DeLorme AG-008449-201 inReach Two-Way Satellite Communicator for Smartphones
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- 2-way interactive SOS worldwide. No fringe or weak signal areas. Communicate the nature of your emergency. Receive instructions from emergency personnel. Have piece of mind knowing you are in touch with someone while waiting for the rescue team
- In standalone mode, the inReach is a versatile 2-way communicator with capabilities unavailable on one-way satellite messengers. The inReach can send out messages and tracking points, and receive confirmation of message delivery
- Tracking can be user-configured to display your progress at intervals ranging from 10 minutes to 4 hours. Tracking is activated from the pushbutton interface or designated followers can “ping” your inReach, to remotely activate tracking
- When paired with an iOS( iPhone,iPad,iTouch) or Android mobile device, inReach has the ability to send & receive text messages, from any place on the globe. The two-way messaging capability applies to both personal and SOS communications
- You can compose free form messages of up to 160 characters on your companion device’s keyboard. Send status updates and revised ETAs to family, get the latest news from home. No matter how far you are from home
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inReach Two-Way Satellite Communicator is an award-winning two way satellite communicator which can be used by itself for 2-way personal and SOS communication with message delivery confirmation, and remote GPS position tracking. Or when paired you get enhanced send-and-receive text messaging, inReach can be paired with an iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Android phones and tablets. The inReach uses the Iridium satellite network, it has 100% global service, with no gaps, no degraded or fringe coverage areas. The inReach is buoyant, waterproof to 3 meters, and impact-resistant to military standards. When used by itself, all inReach functionality is controlled by its pushbutton interface, which is ergonomically designed for one-handed use. In standalone mode inReach can send out messages and tracking points, and receive confirmation. Unlike one-way satellite messengers inReach clearly indicates when your message has been delivered to its recipient. When you’re alone in a remote location, knowing your message was received may be the most reassuring piece of information you can have. When paired with an iOS or Android mobile device, inReach has the ability to both send and receive text messages, to and from any place on the globe. The two-way messaging capability applies to both personal and SOS communications. The Earthmate app, available at no charge for both iOS and Android platforms, installs all inReach function screens on the companion device, allowing users to compose and send personal and SOS messages, receive delivery confirmation, enable tracking, and check message history. Using inReach and your paired device you can describe the nature and location of your distress in detail, so the proper resources can be deployed.
Top Customer Reviews
For me, the question boiled down to whether two-way communication was worth the extra money. The subscriptions for the two products do not match up perfectly (apples and oranges), so a simple price comparison really doesn't make sense.
The inReach "Safety" plan costs $120/yr and gives you 10 messages per month (sent and received) and does not include "tracking" (useless to me because I use my GPS for tracking). When on the trail I used to check in once a day on my Spot, so 10 days per month is adequate for me, and I like having the capability of receiving info in the event someone back home needs to communicate with me (gives me peace of mind). The Spot basic subscription is $100/yr. The extra $20 per year is worth it to me. And if I go over my 10 messages per month, it's only $1.50 per additional message, which will not likely break the bank.
Moving up the subscription ladder, I suppose the next useful comparison would be the inReach "Recreation" plan ($300/yr, which gives you "tracking" and 40 messages per month) and the Spot's basic service, plus tracking, plus "type and send" service--adds up to $180/yr for the Spot services. Here, you need to ask yourself whether two-way communication is worth the extra $120/yr. I think Delorme would do well to reduce the price of their Recreation plan, although I must admit that I doubt I would find it tempting, even at $180/yr.
Another nice feature of the inReach is that it communicates with my Android phone, and I am able to download topo maps to my phone. The maps are of high-quality and are quite detailed for the United States (24k). You can also get maps covering other regions of the world, but these maps are not nearly as detailed. Bottom line, if you want two-way communication at a reasonable price on a satellite network that covers the entire planet, then the inReach is really the only game in town.
The Iridium system is always available, but my understanding about Globalstar is that it is NOT always available because they don't have all their satellites up yet. I think that $120 per year plus $.50 per waypoint and $1.50 per message is an inexpensive way to reliably let your loved ones know where you are when out of cell range. Since SPOT works on Globalstar and can not receive messages, I never gave it serious consideration.
One thing that Delorme does NOT tell you, is that if you DO push the panic button and call for search and rescue, there can be expensive charges for the SAR. GEOS, the company that monitors the emergency calls sells a pre-paid search and rescue plan for $15 per year which will cover up to $100,000 per year in SAR costs. Again, pretty cheap for peace of mind.
It is true that a message takes about 20-25 minutes to reach its destination, or about 45 minutes to receive a reply once you send a message. So its not Instant messaging, but it does allow you to connect using either a text to a cell phone or by e-mail.
Battery life for the Delorme is not bad. One set of disposable lithium batteries will last 24 hours if synced by bluetooth to your iPhone or 125 hours if not. But the iPhone battery would not last that long. i use an Energ4 protective battery case which works great and gives me about 16 hours of continuous iPhone use or about 4 days standby. In addition, i have started carrying an ANKER back up battery, which I have tested, but not actually used in the field. Theoretically, it should triple my iPhone battery time from the above. I also carry a 4-pak of spare AA lithium batteries for the Delorme.
It communicates via the Iridium Network.
On the iPhone, you first download topo maps of your area of interest before you head into the field using Wi-Fi. The GPS portion of the iPhone works quite well even when out of cell phone range and shows your current position as well as previously uploaded waypoints on the topo map. I also use the Trimble Outdoors navigator app on my iPhone which has better navigational capabilities. ( the Trimble compass feature can be set to point at any waypoint, like your car, so you can find your way back if you get lost)
Most Recent Customer Reviews
GPS sensitivity is poor.Read more