There are essentially three flavours of satellite communications. Simplex, or one way devices that are cheap, simple and ideal for asset tracking over continents. There are then more expensive duplex or two way devices that mimic the sort of connectivity provided by a 2G network. Expensive but valuable in far flung corners of the globe. Finally there are the systems that charge based on bandwidth which can really be seen a type of expensive mobile broadband.
The constellations of satellites that provide the connectivity can either be in low earth orbit, typically polar orbits or geostationary over certain areas of the globe. There are good solutions that only work in some regions because of this. NFC can help provide the correct solution for the job in hand.