Send Text Messages from (Almost) Anywhere on Earth

10:52 a.m. on January 7, 2010 (EST)
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This thread is for comments on the article "Send Text Messages from (Almost) Anywhere on Earth"

Outdoor Retailer is still two weeks away, but one of the potentially more interesting new 2010 products has just been announced, a Delorme PN-Series GPS device that will use the SPOT satellite system to communicate text messages.

Full article at http://www.trailspace.com/articles/2010/01/07/send-text-messages-from-almost-anywhere-on-earth.html

1:41 p.m. on January 7, 2010 (EST)
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Bill, for some reason, all I can see is the headline and not the article. Any idea what is going on?

2:21 p.m. on January 7, 2010 (EST)
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I'm not having any trouble loading the page from my end.

Bill: a pal of mine asks if these aren't similar to two-way satellite pagers that have supposedly been around for a decade.

Also, what do you think of the significant cost issue of having to buy a GPSR and a Spot and pay the Spot subscriber fee? You could rent a damn fine satphone for that kinda money, I suspect.

4:18 p.m. on January 7, 2010 (EST)
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Works for me, Tom D. Please let us know if it's still not working at your end.

Tom M, I haven't seen the combo price mentioned yet. Did you? I was wondering how the math would work out, but figured they hadn't set the price(s) yet.

5:46 p.m. on January 7, 2010 (EST)
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The combination price is a bit of a reduction from the separate items. The subscription fee, it works out to about $17/month, according to Chip, much less than renting either a Globalstar or an Iridium phone for the same time period. The PN-60 is a much more capable unit than the predecessors (20, 30, and 40), and is in the same price range as other companies' GPSRs with similar capabilities - it is far from a low-end unit. But it will not give you voice capability, only text, and one-way at that. Remember that satphones run $2-5/minute, depending on several things, although the digital transmissions are a lot cheaper.

Tom M, the Communicator is just one-way, as I understand it. One thing I suggested when I did a review of the original SPOT was some kind of confirmation that the signal was received by the satellite, but I have seen no indication that this was implemented. The Communicator, as I understand it, is only a transmitter to the satellites. I will see if I can get an answer to this, but Chip is rather busy at the CES right now.

7:41 p.m. on January 7, 2010 (EST)
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Still not working. I even turned off my pop up blocker and my firewall. Sometimes my security software goes a bit haywire, so that is probably it.

7:48 p.m. on January 7, 2010 (EST)
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We'll look into it asap, Tom.

9:10 p.m. on January 7, 2010 (EST)
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Sometimes I wish ALL texting was one way!

Nifty idea though.

12:09 p.m. on January 8, 2010 (EST)
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Methinks someone's mother came up with this idea.

1:39 p.m. on January 8, 2010 (EST)
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Thanks Dave, whatever you did, it works now for me.

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