I’ve just ordered a DeLorme inReach satellite messenger that should come in very handy for the 2014 expedition. It has some nice features that will provide some peace of mind, allowing family and friends to monitor our travels and to stay in touch whilst also providing us with a communication option for those times when we are out of cell-phone range.
I initially researched the Spot Messenger and Spot Connect devices several months ago but was delaying the purchase until closer to this year’s summer trip. I was preparing to order the Spot Connect this week when, fortunately, I checked the reviews on the REI website. The Spot devices have received some poor reviews that caused me to re-think my plans to purchase one.
I then found information on the inReach device, which has received a lot of very positive reviews on the REI site. It was an easy decision to purchase the inReach rather than the Spot Connect!
The inReach has some very useful features:
- It will relay our GPS location every 10 minutes so that family and friends can monitor our progress via online mapping software
- We can use the device to send and receive SMS texts, via the Iridium satellite system, from anywhere in the world.
- The SOS feature allows us to send an emergency message to rescue services, along with our current GPS location.
- It pairs with iPhone and iPad via Bluetooth which will allow us to navigate via downloaded maps.
- Messages can be posted directly to FaceBook
We’ll take the unit with us to Europe this summer to test it and to get familiar with it. Should be fun!
I bought the unit from REI. I’ve been a member for a few years and really like the store and its products. As a member, you get an annual dividend (refund) based on the purchases you make during the year and they have great customer service.