I had asked about the Inmarsat Isatphone Pro on the advice page, but could not get much feedback. After learning what I could, I took a chance and bought this phone for $645 hoping that it would do the job more affordably than Iridium. It has been a great success.
It uses a geosynchronous satellite near the equator, so I was concerned about using it in Northern Canada due to the need to point the antenna towards the satellite. However, at 63 degrees latitude (north) in the Northwest Territories I used it daily and had perfect connections in about 45 seconds each time. Then I used it in the rocky mountains at about 53 degrees latitude north, and was pleased that even when in a valley and surrounded by ridges it worked fine and connected quickly. The voicemail feature was useful, and I was able to check for messages daily.
Once you understand the phone, know to point the antenna south and not move around, the phone worked flawlessly. My only minor gripe is that it took some time to receive text messages through the Inmarsat network.