Got SPOT!

18 07 2011

SPOT satellite beacon...

I’ve been keeping my eye on the new SPOT Connect satellite beacon that connects to your iPhone so it can send short text msgs via satellite in addition to the normal SPOT SOS & tracking functions. It hasn’t gotten high enough on my To Buy List to fit into my budget yet, but Kurt had a new SPOT beacon he received as a warranty replacement for his older model unit. He is a fulltime student for the next few years so he wasn’t keen on spending the $$$ to activate the SPOT service given his limited free time to get into trouble! So he gave it to me to use. It will come in handy on brevets and road trips so Sharon can keep tabs on me!

Operating instructions...

I’ll use this SPOT for the next year or two and see how the SPOT Connect product develops. Richard left me a comment on a previous SPOT post to let me know DeLorme was working with satellite phone company Iridium to make a satellite messaging unit similar to the SPOT Connect called  inReach. It’s clear basic satellite messaging capabilities are going to be more and more common so holding off a couple years should open up quite a few options.


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6 responses

18 07 2011
AdamDZ

This is the next big thing after GPS for me. Freedom from cellular signal nightmares! They just need to get cheaper and allow for more emails to be sent as well as allow to receive emails.

18 07 2011
Val Garou

I like the simplicity of the units we have now. I don’t really want more communication options, because part of the reason I go places remote enough to warrant a satellite beacon is to go to remote places. I certainly don’t need my email following me around out there–because that means work and day-to-day bullshit will follow with it.

Spot’s “I’m Okay” update button seems about right to me, though I find the subscription rate a little stiff.

18 07 2011
thelazyrando

@Val – I tend to agree with you, but I would like the ability to send/rec short text msgs via satellite as I think that would be very useful to clarify what the problem is and deal with logistical issues like needing an early pick up.

I am hoping products like the SPOT Connect fill that gap.

18 07 2011
AdamDZ

I definitely want more than the pre-canned “I’m OK” message. Nothing fancy, just plain text emails, few sentences long.

19 07 2011
Doug Mayer

Whoa, cool! A SPOT with texting seems to strike a nice balance between wilderness “away from it all” and a full-on sat phone. It was really nice to be able to text my parents from Mali but cell service in rural west Africa is spotty at best.

5 08 2011
Free SPOT Mount… « The Lazy Randonneur

[…] bought the wrong RAM mount for my SPOT satellite beacon. As you can see my SPOT is too small to fit the RAM mount. If you have the older style SPOT shown […]

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