What happened

Shares of Globalstar (GSAT -1.82%) rocketed 68.6% higher in February, according to data provided by S&P Global Market Intelligence, after the satellite communications company announced a series of developments that might help it to unlock some of the potential value in its assets.

So what

Globalstar operates a constellation of satellites designed for satellite phone and data communications. The company has found it hard to monetize those assets, causing its stock to lose nearly 80% of its value in the three years ending last December.

But so far, 2021 has been a decidedly better story for Globalstar. The stock pushed higher in February after the company announced that Qualcomm (QCOM -1.14%) had included the radio frequencies it owns in its new modems.

A satellite with the Earth behind it.

Image source: Getty Images.

That's important, because it opens up Globalstar's network to a wide range of smartphones, laptops, Internet of Things devices, and other uses.

Or, as Globalstar vice president Kyle Pickens put it in a statement, "Qualcomm's support of Band n53 represents a significant milestone in our efforts to commercialize our spectrum in the U.S. and all other countries where we have or expect to obtain terrestrial authority."

Globalstar followed that later in the month with an announcement of an alliance with wireless-tech company XCOM Labs to make Globalstar's spectrum more powerful.

Now what

These announcements are steps in the right direction, but the company still needs to execute on that potential.

Globalstar shares have spent much of the last three years trading below $1, implying investors had little hope for a recovery. The recent jump is likely more of a reflection that at long last it is at least easier now to make the bull case, but investors should still be cautious as this story continues to play out.