goTenna is an upcoming device designed to allow you to text your friends without requiring any type of central connectivity (cell towers, satellites, Wi-Fi, etc.). Originally designed as a gadget that will help you communicate with the members of your party in places that don't have cell reception or during emergency situations, the device is recently getting a lot of attention from the anti-surveillance community due to its end-to-end encryption system.
goTenna connects through Bluetooth to your smartphone, so it doesn't require any kind of cables. As long as the device is closer than 20 feet (6 meters) from your phone, the two will be able to function together. The communication system is a bit similar to the walkie-talkie's one: the texting device sends messages through long range radio waves to its pair or to an entire group of receivers. The maximum range where you can both send and receive signals strongly depends on your geographical area and elevation.
You can easily send your texts or share your current location (on an offline map) from your phone with the help of the goTenna free app. Your phone passes the information to the connected device, which in its turn transmits the message to the recipient. At the other end things happen in reverse: the gadget receives the message, then sends it to your smartphone so that you can read it. Additional functionality includes automatic message pushing in case of initial failure and confirmation upon delivery, emergency chat, shout (transmit to anyone in range), proximal friend map and location pinging.
Initially created as a helpful device for hiking and unforeseen disasters, goTenna is enjoying a massive positive reaction from the pro privacy community. Besides the fact that the messages sent through goTenna are very hard to intercept because they don't go trough any kind of central location, the gadget also features a 224-bit elliptic curve end-to-end encryption system and a function that allows the user to send self-destructing messages.
For more information visit goTenna's website.