Gsat Micro – portable – Iridium
The Spot Gen 3 provides an impressive battery life – I carried it around for over a month set to transmit every five minutes when moving and did not deplete the batteries.
The device will send alerts and a selection of five one-way messages to email or via SMS, but you pay extra for SMS messages. The entire unit is managed via an online portal where transmission frequencies, alerting and preloaded messages are set up. The Spot must be plugged into a computer connected to the internet to change configuration. Editing the standard preloaded message text is a must – one of them simply says ‘Help’.
Each Spot has its own mapping page that
Annual fee – basic – including messages to email £125 Enhanced tracking (more than 24hrs) +£30 per year
SOS support +£15 per year
Messages to SMS + 10p per message This is the cutting-edge of tracker technology. It is the smallest Iridium tracker going, fitting comfortably in the palm of a hand. It also has incredibly advanced functionality, including the ability to receive and carry out advanced commands via satellite.
Its current uses are mainly commercial and military, but this is the space we should be watching to imagine what standard tracker technology will be offering us in years to come. The bad news is that you need to be a bit of a nerd to control the Gsat micro. But with the right programmer you would be able to invent, write and test commands that could be carried out anywhere in the world – cutting
engine or turning instruments on or off would only be the start of its functionality.
Charges are monthly and relate to bytes and should be discussed with the provider – I’ve given prices for an entry-level package with the GTC track mapping portal.
Entry level package, for 12,000 bytes £28 per month Activation fee £37