[aprssig] Commerical APRS Tracker

Scott Miller scott at opentrac.org
Fri Jan 25 01:51:04 EST 2008

Seen that... no word yet on how the real-world performance is.

Geostationary wouldn't be much good for that... they use Globalstar at 
1414 km.

For an emergency device, their design sucks, in my opinion.  With that 
sparse a user interface, you'd better provide some very clear 
instructions.  Look at an EPIRB:


It's vitally important that a device like this be usable in an emergency 
situation by someone who hasn't read the instruction manual in advance.

I wonder how unlimited the unlimited tracking really is, or if there are 
restrictions in the terms of service.  For starters, it looks like the 
rate is fixed at 10 minutes, and you have to reactivate it every 24 
hours.  If it really is unlimited aside from that, they must be getting 
a good rate from Globalstar.  I know Orbcomm's prices per-packet were 
too high to make that practical last time I checked.

I wonder if the units use timeslotting... I suppose they must, and it 
wouldn't be hard to accomplish when they've got GPS and assigned IDs.


Ralph Milnes wrote:
> Here's a commercial tracking device for $169, plus a $150 yr (or so) service
> fee. 
> Uses uploads to a commercial satellites to "Send and save your location and
> allow contacts to track your progress using your password and Google MapsT.
> Request help from friends and family at your exact location. Dispatch
> emergency responders to your exact location."  
> Sound like it might be a great safety device for back-country explorers or
> sailors.
> http://www.findmespot.com/explorespot/spotmessenger.aspx?sid=bn
> Any implications or ideas for hams/APRS?  Too bad we don't have a
> geostationary OSCAR network. :-)
> Ralph KC2RLM
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