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Old 04-08-2016, 08:19   #1
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SPOT Gen3 GPS Tracker

Hello everyone,
Does anyone out there use SPOT GPS tracking devices? Am curious to know if the offered service is as good as advertised and hearing of other's experiences using the SPOT devices, reliability of service, etc. Thanks in advance!
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Old 04-08-2016, 15:55   #2
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Re: SPOT Gen3 GPS Tracker

I am happy with my spot. It worked well on my trip from they Seychelles to mozambique in July last year


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Old 04-08-2016, 17:02   #3
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Re: SPOT Gen3 GPS Tracker

Members of my family use them for recreation and work activities while in wilderness areas of northern and western Canada. We'll be using one for our daily check-in for a backpacking trip next week.

No complaints - it does what it's supposed to do.
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Old 04-08-2016, 17:06   #4
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Re: SPOT Gen3 GPS Tracker

Google some.

Spot is more patchy compared to yellowbrick or inreach (which are both Iridium based).

The above may count in some offshore areas but is insignificant if you are within the stronger area of Spot sats beam.

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Old 04-08-2016, 17:06   #5
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Re: SPOT Gen3 GPS Tracker

we have been using one for 6 years, Eastern Seaboard and Caribbean, works great and as advertised. Great entry level sat comm device. We used it to keep family aware of where we were and all was good.
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Old 04-08-2016, 17:16   #6
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Re: SPOT Gen3 GPS Tracker

Thank you all for the replies.

And yes, as bvander stated: "Great entry level Sat Comm device" Think I'll pick one up as a back up to a back up.

Thanks for the feedback ya'll!
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Old 04-08-2016, 23:01   #7
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Re: SPOT Gen3 GPS Tracker

If you are wanting to use the SPOT to show family, friends and stalkers a bread crumb trail of where you have been then forget it. SPOTs tracking website is total rubbish, not at all suitable for cruisers.

Spend a bit more on a YBtracker or a Delorme
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Old 05-08-2016, 00:09   #8
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Re: SPOT Gen3 GPS Tracker

Hoppy,
I have heard the same thing in a few instances. However, I have also read and been told that SPOT works great for those that have it. That was the reason for my original post. Asking for real life exeriences using it. Trying to seperate the wheat from the chaff, so-to-speak.
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Old 05-08-2016, 01:29   #9
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Re: SPOT Gen3 GPS Tracker

Quote:
Originally Posted by Teknishn View Post
Hoppy,
I have heard the same thing in a few instances. However, I have also read and been told that SPOT works great for those that have it. That was the reason for my original post. Asking for real life exeriences using it. Trying to seperate the wheat from the chaff, so-to-speak.
But what are you trying to achieve by getting a SPOT?

It may be fine for sending messages and showing where you are now, but I've never seen a spot tracking page that shows any more than the last 50 or 100 position reports.

To me, the inability to see the whole journey on a single page loses some important benefits from a post-trip review. When I follow someone cross the atlantic or whatever, I'd like to see the "big picture" and the same applies to when I have finished a trip, I want to look back and see where I've been.

Also... SPOT does not show your speed or heading which I think is important if you have a friend "watching over you" when you do a trip.

If you only want it for "now" then spot is fine, but for me the other intangible benefits of a YBtracker and I guess Delorme Inreach make them worth the extra money.

I was going to comment on battery life but it seems that with Gen3 they have fixed that.
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Old 05-08-2016, 01:47   #10
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Re: SPOT Gen3 GPS Tracker

I have just been looking at a few blogs with "find me" using spot and some of the links don't find a location, including one CF member who finished his journey only a few weeks ago. I suspect that SPOTs tracking site will not show old positions even if they were the last reports. So it's possible, that if you decide to chill out at anchor too long, not using Spot, then your last known position is lost.

A couple of Spot trackers, not showing much of the cruisers journey

Where Are We? – SV Dulcinea
SPOT Shared Page

My YB tracking site https://my.yb.tl/Jessabbe/ I've set it for all of 2016 but viewers can select other date ranges I have preset. My "all time" tracking would be more impressive if I ventured out of Greece

If you only want now, Spot is fine, for historical tracking, its
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Old 05-08-2016, 02:58   #11
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pirate Re: SPOT Gen3 GPS Tracker

Hoppy... I think you'll find that's set up by the owner of the Spot device.. mine is set at 7 day history for any trips I do.. don't see any point in longer.. I've no interest in looking back at my track.. I lived it.
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Old 05-08-2016, 03:23   #12
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Re: SPOT Gen3 GPS Tracker

Can you display any more than 50 or 100 position reports at a time?

The thing I'm trying to highlight is that with trackers there are two sides to the user experience, the cruiser who has the spot on board and the people online following.

If part of the reason for the tracker is to show where you have been and how you got the, then from what I've seen, Spot fails.

For a delivery skipper who wants to share the location with the client, then the position now is all that is important and then it's fine.


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Old 05-08-2016, 03:53   #13
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Re: SPOT Gen3 GPS Tracker

All,
Thank you for the feedback. I am not a cruiser. I'm repatriating to the States after being gone for 20 years and will be moving aboard my little pocket cruiser in April of next year. The plan is to gunkhole up and down he East Coast of the States until I grow up (ain't gonna happen) or figure where I want to live. No living family and no place I have to be, so a pocket-cruiser suits the purpose. Was enquiring about the SPOT Gen3, and like devices so that I can tell friends (all 2 of them...anymore is too much maintenance) that I have reached my destination and can transmit back that all is ok. I have a tendency to disappear for weeks/months at a time without telling anyone, last time into the Eastern Desert of Egypt for nearly 3 months (just me and the dog). As age catches up to me and I will be reaquainting with old friends that have always been there, I was looking for a way to let them know where I am, and that I am safely anchored somewhere. Something basic....don't need anything exotic here.
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Old 05-08-2016, 03:56   #14
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Re: SPOT Gen3 GPS Tracker

FWIW I have both a Spot and the deLorme InReach. The InReach is a much more versatile and reliable unit in my opinion.

However, I am not a big fan of either of their tracking websites, so I set up a fee account at https://spotwalla.com/ and have the tacking messages displayed there. Super easy to setup and a much better interface and map.
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Old 05-08-2016, 05:17   #15
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Re: SPOT Gen3 GPS Tracker

The key is to assess what are your comms requirement. SPOT is a good basic tool for letting friends and families know where you are and your OK. For us, worked great on Eastern Seaboard and Bahamas, where cell coverage is adequate for more detailed texting or calling.
Delorme is great too, and has txting and weather downloading capability.
Price is also greater.
Acquisition for SPOT ~ $100, Delorme $250
Annual cost for SPOT $100, Delorme ~$250 depending on plan.
We were very happy with SPOT for the past 7 years in Eastern Seaboard and Bahamas. Recently bought Delorme because we are now contemplating heading further afield, meaning less cell coverage and so no want increased capability. The key here is our decision is based on requirement, not trying to build requirement to a piece of electronics.
Am never a believer of buy tech just because its there. Decide on your requirement and then buy devices that fill that requirement. Unfortunately todays land lubber trends are the need to have the greatest newest bit of tech, that's why you see people line up overnight for a stupid cell phone release with capabilities that half the people will never use.
The other aspect on a boat should look at it from a systems point of view not a single piece of equipment, which means look at all the devices (Cell (voice and data), Sat, VHF, HF, wifi, calling card) and select the items which best meet your needs and budget.
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