[aprssig] Ideal Tracker Spec (Cross country on 6 AA's)

Dave B dave at g8kbv.demon.co.uk
Sun Dec 9 02:35:59 EST 2012

On 6 Dec 2012 at 15:56, Bill Vodall wrote:

> >> starbucks or McD's...   It could even do Facebook updates.   :)
> >>
> >  There might be none of those be available in the receiving
> >  countries.
> >
> > Like in the recent balloon experiment.
> There weren't any digipeaters either...
> Interesting question - are there more Starbucks and/or McDonalds with
> free WiFi or APRS packet digipeaters in the world?
> Bill


I don't know in general about the US, but in the EU/UK and now I find TR 
(Turkey) "Free WiFi" is rarely if ever "Free to connect WiFi".  You need 
the WPA key from the AP owner, or (in public spaces, airports, some 
hotels/resteraunts etc) you have to Fill in a form on a web page, to be 
granted "Free" access.  And of course, those forms are unique to every 
system, so automating that would be a pain to say the least.

Also, though all that might actually get you online for "Free", no $, £, 
EUR, Yen or whatever, the actual connectivity you get is often very 
restricted, and proxied to hell and back, for "market research needs".  
(They skim and monitor your traffic.) 

The only truly "Open" AP's are often porly configured private/domestic 
systems, sometimes with no connectivity to the 'net anyway.  Probably 
some box in a cupboard left powered up and forgotten.

APRS over HF/VHF/UHF RF etc and depending on local Ham licence 
conditions, iGates all over the place, is overall probably the way to go 
even today.   Unless, you have a paid for data connection via mobile 
phone, but then the coverage of that is often less than ideal too, 
sometimes heavily filtered, and often expensive to run.

In the UK however, BT (British Telecom) have their BT-Fon and OpenZone 
systems (currently being rebranded) that if you are a paying BT Internet 
user, you do get "Free WiFi" all over the place, on the back of 
(unsuspecting) other users systems.   It does work, but needs software 
installed on the mobile client to allow and manage the connection, so is 
effectively a "paid for" system anyway.


Dave TR/G0WBX  (for the next few days at least.)

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