Spot Messenger Satellite Personal Tracker
Spot Messenger Satellite Personal Tracker

Spot Messenger Satellite Personal Tracker

Manufacturer:
Spot

UPC:
893049001059

Retail Price:
$169.99

Avg. Rating:

Features:
  • SpotChecking feature alerts friends and family of your precise location
  • SpotCasting function lets friends and family follow your progress in real time
  • Sends GPS coordinates and distress message to Emergency Response Center
  • Satellite technology works around the world; measures 2.75 x 4.38 x 1.5 inches (W x H x D)
Editorial Review
Give your loved ones full peace of mind when you're on the mountain with the Spot Satellite Messenger. Whether you're just checking in, allowing others to track your progress, or calling for help, Spot gives you a vital line of communication with friends and family when you want it, and emergency assistance when and where you need it. Spot employs a GPS satellite network to acquire its coordinates, then sends its location to the recipient of your choice, complete with a link to Google Maps and a pre-programmed message. Unlike personal locator beacons, however, Spot does more than just call for help. The SpotChecking feature, for example, lets you notify your SpotTeam--the friends and family you've chosen as your contacts--and tell them all is well, notify them of your location, or save waypoints so you can review your route at a later date. You can also activate the SpotCasting feature to let friends and family follow your progress in real time (every 10 minutes). Anyone with access to your account information can log on and view your route, complete with virtual views provided by Google Maps. SpotCasting is a terrific feature for mountain climbers looking to celebrate their accomplishments with their loved ones.

The most important feature, however, is Spot's ability to call 911 in the event of a life-threatening or other critical emergency. Once activated, Spot will acquire your exact coordinates from the GPS network, and then send that location along with a distress message to a GEOS International Emergency Response Center every five minutes until cancelled. The Emergency Response Center will then notify the appropriate emergency responders based on your location and personal information. Responders may include local police, the highway patrol, the Coast Guard, an embassy or consulate, or other emergency response and search-and-rescue teams. Even if Spot can't acquire its location from the GPS network, it will still attempt to send a distress signal--without your exact location--to the Emergency Response Center, which will still notify your emergency contacts of the signal and continue to monitor the network for further messages.

Spot works around the world, including in virtually all of the continental United States, Canada, Mexico, Europe, and Australia, and portions of South America, Northern Africa, and Northeastern Asia. And provided you're in a good coverage area, Spot offers a 99 percent probability of sending a successful message within 20 minutes. As a result, Spot is ideal for anyone with a taste for outdoor adventures, including boaters, kayakers, sailboarders, archaeologists, skiers, climbers, pilots, business travelers, snowshoers, and just about anyone else.

Spot requires two AA lithium batteries, with a battery life of up to one year in standby mode, 14 days in SpotCasting mode, or 7 days in 911 mode. And thanks to the water-resistant housing (safe in 1 meter of water for up to 30 minutes), you needn't worry about using Spot in adverse conditions. Spot measures a compact 2.75 by 4.38 by 1.5 inches (W x H x D), weighs 7.37 ounces, and carries a one-year limited warranty.

Communication Functions:


    Spot employs a GPS satellite network to acquire its coordinates, then sends its location to the recipient of your choice, complete with a link to Google Maps and a pre-programmed message.
  • Alert 9-1-1 dispatches emergency responders to an exact location
  • Ask for Help sends a request for help to friends and family with your location
  • Check In lets contacts know where you are and that you are okay
  • Track Progress sends and saves your location and allows others to track your progress using Google Maps

Battery Life:
  • Power ON, unused: Approximately 1 year
  • SPOT casting continuous tracking mode: Approximately 14 days
  • 9-1-1 mode: Up to 7 consecutive days
  • HELP mode: up to 1900 messages
  • SPOT check OK up to 1900 messages

Specifications:
  • Weight: 7 ounces
  • Waterproof to a depth of 1 meter for up to 30 minutes
  • Operating Temperature: -40ºF to 185ºF
  • Operating Altitude: -300 feet to 21,300 feet
  • Humidity and Salt Fog Rated



Product Description
Stay in touch via satellite technology – whether you're just checking in, allowing others to check your progress, or calling for help.
  • 100satellite technology works where cell phones don't
  • Vital line of communication with friends and family
  • Emergency service when you need it
  • 4 key functions for sending messages to friends, family or emergency responders
  • Works around the world
  • Satellite service subscription required
  • Waterproof to a depth of 1 meter
  • Floats in water
Communicate with friends and family and get emergency assistance where and when you need it.
The Spot Messenger Satellite Personal Tracker is no longer in stock at any of the 70,000 stores listed on GoSale.
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Spot Messenger Satellite Personal Tracker Specs:
Product NameSpot Messenger Satellite Personal Tracker
ManufacturerSpot
Product Number MPNSPOT-1
Retail Price $169.99
EAN-130893049001059
EAN-1400893049001059
UPC893049001059
Weight1 lbs.
Last Updated:29-August-2014
Deal first added on:9-September-2008

Tags

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Electronics video Systems Satellite Home Accessories Automation Tracking Surveillance with GPS messanger Black Friday
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Latest 6 Reviews
Here is what people are saying about the Spot Messenger Satellite Personal Tracker
5 Star Rating  "Great service in 7 countries." 
- Reviewed By An Amazon User
I've used the SPOT device in 7 different countries. USA, Mexico, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, UAE, Turkey and Australia and have never had a problem at any time. I'm living in Australia at the moment and have taken it right out in the bush hundreds of miles from any civilization. I've taken it on ocean cruises where it has tracked accurately, in the middle of deserts, major cities and take it out when I go fishing on the boat so really never a problem. It really surprises me to see negative reviews. The first lock onto satellites can take up to 10 minutes depending on where you are but after that it's always worked for me. I let my friend use it on a motorbike ride trip of about 1100 miles in track mode and without fail a position update to the website every 10 minutes. I don't use it all the time, perhaps once a month but I have total confidence that should I need to use the 911 button, even here in Australia where the service centre would have to contact the local Police in the very small outback town I live in, that the cavalry will come if needed.
 
1 Star Rating  "Absolute Waste of Money and Unreliable at Best" 
- Reviewed By An Amazon User
I've never written a bad review of an item but this one warrants it. This "tracker" (I specifically put it in quotes to convey my feelings on it being called a tracking device) does not work as advertised. We bought the device for a trekking trip through Peru; we paid the $100 to activate the service. So, all in all we're about $200 into the device. The unit arrived at my house in the US and I tested the device before we left. It worked perfectly. Then comes using it internationally...wow is all I can say. Long story short -and I won't bore you with the details- it didn't work as advertised. We attempted to send 17 messages and 2 actually made it. Yes, '2' as in only 2, and these were sent from Lima (meaning that it didn't work anywhere else in the country). I thought to myself "maybe GPS reception is just terrible here" so I checked my handheld GPS. Sure enough, I had full strength. At this point I'm pretty upset that we're relying on a device that doesn't work in a place where we've been told it would, but what am I going to do since I'm in Peru in the middle of nothing.

We got back to the US and I contacted SPOT about the problem. This is their response:

"We appreciate your feedback as every customer is important to us. It is unfortunate that your unit didn't perform as you expected and the only thing we can do at this point is provide detailed instructions on the ok message...If you are still unable to successfully transmit after following the instructions it may be that your unit is defective and you can submit a warranty claim at [...]."

So, in all, the unit doesn't work as advertised and their customer service is...well..terrible. The message above took about a week to get. This device may be perfect for the US, but if you plan on traveling internationally then I wouldn't recommend SPOT at all. Realistically, an international cell phone is a)cheaper and b)more reliable than this device. The money spent on this device ($200) is more than enough to call from anywhere in the world. More so, if you are hurt and do send an emergency message from the device and a team is sent to find you, you're responsible for that bill NOT SPOT. Think of how expensive an ambulance ride is and multiply that times 20. That being said, if you do buy it then expect a bad customer services experience. I hope this wards you off of wasting $200, but if you do buy it then good luck to you.
 
2 Star Rating  "Unreliable" 
- Reviewed By An Amazon User
I have had my Spot for about a year, and I do a lot of motorcycle riding in the mountains. It seems to have really hard time getting a message out if you are not in wide open spaces. I just went on a 7 hour motorcycle ride in the mountains, covering 150 miles. I sent 5 OK check-in messages druing the ride, and only 1 got through. That doesn't realy fill me with confidence that an emergency message will get out if needed, or let my friends know my location when I vary from my planned track. A good choice if you are in wide open spaces, but maybe not in the mountains, and definitely not in the forest.
 
1 Star Rating  "Basically worthless...so much so that it's maddening." 
- Reviewed By An Amazon User
Let me avoid generalities and provide instead a very specific anecdote about my experience with this product: I purchased the Spot before a trip to Venezuela to see Angel Falls (which is deep in the backcountry). I frequently go places that are off the grid, and this seemed like a great way to give my wife peace of mind. She gets a message a couple times a day saying I'm okay and I'm located at X-location...great right? Here's the problem, the Spot only worked when I was in urban areas. As soon as I got into the backcountry, no dice. I followed the instructions explicitly and yet zero messages got through. I'm no novice at GPS communication--and the Spot could not get messages out in many situations when a normal GPS navigation device would have had no problem getting satellite signals. I could have just used my cell phone to keep in touch with my wife and it would have been equally effective to the Spot. The Spot actually created a very bad situation in which I thought my wife was getting frequent "All Okay" messages, when in fact she was hearing nothing. The only feedback you get that your transmission is working is the blinking green lights, but you never know for sure that your transmission goes through. So there I was with false peace of mind thinking my messages were going through, when my wife was worried sick. I would have been better off without the Spot entirely--then I could have at least told her to not expect any communication from me for 4 days. I firmly believe that the Spot is more of a liability than an asset.
 
4 Star Rating  "SPOT2 - Generally Pleased With This Device" 
- Reviewed By An Amazon User from Los Angeles, USA
I have a SPOT 2 tracker that I recently purchased from an REI outdoors store. I use the device mainly to provide added safety when I am doing long motorcycle trips. We also use it for our family vehicle during vacations, and I would cetainly take it if I was going hiking into remote country.

The SPOT2 design was modified by the manufacturer so that the keys that activate the SOS signal and the Roadside Assistance signal are protected by small covers. You have to open a small plastic cover and push these buttons - in order for the emergency services to work. That's probably a good design idea ... I can see where this device could generate false alarms if these buttons were not protected. It follows that you must be alert and conscious - in order to send an emergency request for help with the SPOT2. The device won't do it by itself - there is no auotmatic timeout system.

I decided to subscribe to the "tracking service", which allows the SPOT2 device to send updated signals with your position. You do pay extra $$ in order to have this service available from SPOT. But the charges seem reasonable. Basically, the SPOT2 sends a new location signal (with GPS info) through the satellite system every 10 minutes, and these automatic updates are recorded at the main Web page for SPOT. It would be helpful if the user could vary the time delay between these automatic tracking updates, but right now it's fixed at 10 minutes. I have tried the tracking out during some long motorcycle rides, and it seems to work pretty well. It's possible for a third party to log onto your SPOT page if you give them your username and password (Web page at [...]), then view all the updated coordinates, and plot them out on an online map (similar to Yahoo maps). So the online map display shows a series of points that are separated in time by 10 mins along your route. I have NOT had any problems with satellite coverage, nor any dropouts from the SPOT2 device. I have been using it in California. I think the tracking system is a very handy emergency system - because it does allow someone to check on your recent progress. Presumably if your course shows that you've come to a complete standstill for a long period of time, then eventually someone will wonder why. Of course, you need to BRIEF that person on what they are supposed to expect, and then what to do.

The only real disadvantage of the SPOT system right now - is with their Web page at [...] . The layout of the Web page is fine, but the response time for this Web page to actually come up on your PC is increibly slow. When you first log on, in order to record details for your SPOT user information, it may literally take a few minutes before the network computers at their site get back to you. Really slow!! Naturally, this does not inspire a lot of confidence in their overall system - given that the people running SPOT are supposedly operating a modern worldwide system for emergency messaging. They seriously need to update their Web services to a much faster response time! However, if you are patient then you will succeed in getting your device registered, and then in getting things working. I have noticed that the main problem seems to be the initial response from the SPOT service, but once they do come up on your computer then subsequent communications are a bit faster.

Personally, I think the SPOT2 device is pretty good and worth having as a valuable messaging tool in an emergency. Keep in mind that you must be alert and conscious to activate the SOS or Roadside Assistance buttons. However, if you subscribe to the tracking fature, and you provide a detailed briefing to someone you trust on how to monitor your progress, then the updated map of your progress would be a very useful emergency tool (NOTE: this feature does not require you to be conscious or alive in order to work - it just requires that the SPOT2 device can send receivable signals to the open sky).

Finally - none of this technology should ever be a substitute for good judgment and common sense. Those are the most important ingredients to staying alive ... any time you are venturing into some remote part of this planet.

Good luck!
And hopefully you won't ever need the real thing.
 
5 Star Rating  "First Time I Used a Spot I Had to Use it - And Was Rescued!" 
- Reviewed By An Amazon User from Corvallis, OR USA
I was on a motorcycle trip in a remote area of Oregon and the owner of the BearCat Lodge lent me a Spot "just in case" when I headed out on a daytrip. I ended up hitting a deer and totalling my motorcycle. Fortunately I was not seriously injured, but it was a remote location. I hit the help button and the service called the lodge and gave them my location. I was rescued within the hour.

This isn't just for mountain climbers, its also for anyone who travels to remote locations where cell phone signals don't reach. I am buying one for myself and one for my Dad for father's day. When my kid starts school next year, one is going in his backpack.
 
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