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ACR PLB Vs. SPOT

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Re: ACR PLB Vs. SPOT

Postby Duffus Kentucky Climber » Wed Oct 09, 2013 10:22 am

R-A-F, and Co-native are right about the networks. I think I settled on Iridium as my sat phone carrier because their system works at sea and in most countries, whereas there was an issue (back when I was making the decision) with the amount of coverage Globalstar provided. That may have changed.
It looks like the ridge is just right up there!

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Re: ACR PLB Vs. SPOT

Postby martinleroux » Wed Oct 09, 2013 12:01 pm

I'll put in a plug for the Inreach SE. I bought one last month and so far haven't had any issues. If you only have a partial view of the sky it come sometimes take a few minutes to connect to the Iridium satellite network, but all my messages have (eventually) got through.

I have a few minor complaints, such as an on/off button that could be activated accidentally. Also they don't assign an email address or unique phone number for incoming messages (messages have to be sent from DeLorme's web site or as a reply to an outgoing SMS). But overall it's hard to beat for the price.

Here are a couple of images that illustrate the difference between Globalstar and Iridium coverage. Iridium is truly 100% global.

spot_phone_map.jpg
spot_phone_map.jpg (64.83 KiB) Viewed 137 times

iridium.jpg
iridium.jpg (167.3 KiB) Viewed 137 times

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Re: ACR PLB Vs. SPOT

Postby smoove » Wed Oct 09, 2013 12:10 pm

martinleroux wrote:Also they don't assign an email address or unique phone number for incoming messages (messages have to be sent from DeLorme's web site or as a reply to an outgoing SMS).


I've taken this thing on several outings and I love it so far. I've been able to send and receive texts from anywhere on the hike (which is super easy when you have it paired to your phone).

And folks have been able to reply by text or email without going to the DeLorme website. I also like that it gives you an indicator to let you know your message has gone out. Are you sure people aren't able to reply to your messages conventionally?

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Re: ACR PLB Vs. SPOT

Postby oldschoolczar » Wed Oct 09, 2013 1:14 pm

jrs1965 wrote:
oldschoolczar wrote:If you are subscribing to 406link you get more "messages" with the SARLink. The "messages" are really just a test of transmission functionality but they can be used to communicate "I'm OK". I haven't pulled the trigger on buying one of these yet but I will soon. 406link seems like a good way to have some limited transmission of I'm ok messages and still having the best chance of rescue if the shite hits the an!


I did the research and ended up buying the ResQLink 406 PLB. I was impressed with the redundancy of the dual SAR satellite constellations and the lightweight of the device. This gave me a lot of confidence in my purchase vs. systems that use what I had read to be as unreliable commercial satellites.

However, I looked into message subscription service and decided not to subscribe. One drawback of the small size and weight is limited battery life. The device is factory sealed and would probably not last long with multiple "I'm OK" messages going out.

Regardless, love having it and hope I never have to push the button...


I just picked up the same. Was looking at the SARLink but when I saw them both in person, the small size of the ResQLink was way more appealing to me than being able to send a few more messages. Not sure if I will sign up for the message subscription service either. I might. I've seen some documentation that says you get 220 messages on the ResQLink and others saying 60 messages. However, they limit the messages so it will still function for 24 hours in an emergency, so even if you send 60, your PLB will still work as it's supposed to an emergency. I might try it out because 60 "I'm OK" messages over 5 years is basically one every month. I only would send these in situations where I'm running significantly later than I said I would... that probably won't happen 60 times for me in 5 years, definitely not 220 times.
I looked at the Delorme Inreach SE and it seems like a solid device, but too expensive for me when you consider the plans. There is one for $10/month but you don't get much
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Re: ACR PLB Vs. SPOT

Postby martinleroux » Wed Oct 09, 2013 1:47 pm

smoove wrote:
martinleroux wrote:Also they don't assign an email address or unique phone number for incoming messages (messages have to be sent from DeLorme's web site or as a reply to an outgoing SMS).


And folks have been able to reply by text or email without going to the DeLorme website. Are you sure people aren't able to reply to your messages conventionally?


Yes, I'm sure. Outgoing email messages from the InReach are delivered with a sender address of no.reply@delorme.com. Outgoing SMSs have a phone number that the recipient can reply to, but it's a generic number and messages don't get through if they're not a reply to an outgoing SMS.

I spent a couple hours trying to see if I could subscribe to automated weather forecasts and deliver to them to my Inreach by email by SMS. But it turns out DeLorme doesn't allow this.

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Re: ACR PLB Vs. SPOT

Postby smoove » Wed Oct 09, 2013 1:53 pm

martinleroux wrote:
smoove wrote:
martinleroux wrote:Also they don't assign an email address or unique phone number for incoming messages (messages have to be sent from DeLorme's web site or as a reply to an outgoing SMS).


And folks have been able to reply by text or email without going to the DeLorme website. Are you sure people aren't able to reply to your messages conventionally?


Yes, I'm sure. Outgoing email messages from the InReach are delivered with a sender address of no.reply@delorme.com. Outgoing SMSs have a phone number that the recipient can reply to, but it's a generic number and messages don't get through if they're not a reply to an outgoing SMS.

I spent a couple hours trying to see if I could subscribe to automated weather forecasts and deliver to them to my Inreach by email by SMS. But it turns out DeLorme doesn't allow this.


Ok, I'm probably wrong about the email then. But once you've texted somebody, they've got the number. So no big deal there, right? That generic number doesn't change, does it? My girlfriend sent me a proactive text last weekend by replying to the number she received from the previous hike a week before.

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Re: ACR PLB Vs. SPOT

Postby GregMiller » Wed Oct 09, 2013 1:57 pm

smoove wrote:Ok, I'm probably wrong about the email then. But once you've texted somebody, they've got the number. So no big deal there, right? That generic number doesn't change, does it? My girlfriend sent me a proactive text last weekend by replying to the number she received from the previous hike a week before.


The generic number doesn't change, until you go onto their site and delete the message thread (that way, you can keep a spiteful ex from running through your message total, or something like that). But, as said, you can't subscribe to a weather forecast sort of service. I wouldn't be surprised if someone ends up with a fix for this though - provide a number on their site you can send an inreach message to, so they'd effectively just be replying to your text (SMS). Or, Delorme could get smart, and allow emails from a whitelist to your inreach address.
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Re: ACR PLB Vs. SPOT

Postby smoove » Wed Oct 09, 2013 2:02 pm

GregMiller wrote:
smoove wrote:Ok, I'm probably wrong about the email then. But once you've texted somebody, they've got the number. So no big deal there, right? That generic number doesn't change, does it? My girlfriend sent me a proactive text last weekend by replying to the number she received from the previous hike a week before.


The generic number doesn't change, until you go onto their site and delete the message thread (that way, you can keep a spiteful ex from running through your message total, or something like that). But, as said, you can't subscribe to a weather forecast sort of service. I wouldn't be surprised if someone ends up with a fix for this though - provide a number on their site you can send an inreach message to, so they'd effectively just be replying to your text (SMS). Or, Delorme could get smart, and allow emails from a whitelist to your inreach address.


Ha, good to know! I haven't deleted any of the message threads yet. I'll have to remember that if she becomes spiteful.

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