DeLorme inReach—two-way satellite communication

UPDATE 6/7/2011: See DeLorme inReach: Question and Answer… for comment response summary and updated details.

After a long winter of forced silence I’ve finally been given the nod to share a sneak peek at our latest development efforts here at DeLorme. We’re very excited about our new partnership with Iridium and we’re even more excited to announce the DeLorme® inReach™! We’ll be bringing this unique two-way satellite GPS communicator to market later this year.

The DeLorme inReach continues our effort to keep people connected when they travel outside of cell phone range. With the inReach, you can send AND RECEIVE text messages with true pole-to-pole global coverage. The inReach can be used by itself, with the DeLorme Earthmate PN-60w GPS, or with smartphones running the Android OS!

One of the invaluable features of the DeLorme inReach is the ability to receive emergency SOS and message delivery confirmation while on your adventure. This removes the need to send the same message multiple times and gives immediate feedback that your communication made it through. Emergency response services will even be able to notify you that help is on the way.

When using the device as a standalone, you will be able to send tracking locations as well as three different messages you’ve created ahead of time. SOS messages can be sent to search and rescue and they’ll be able to respond by triggering a change in the SOS LED on the inReach device to let you know that they heard you and are taking action.

Pairing the DeLorme inReach with either a PN-60w or an Android device allows you to type up to 160 characters and send your message to friends and family using either e-mail or SMS text message addresses. Don’t worry about building your contact list ahead of time anymore, you can send messages to new addresses right in the field. Communicate important information, change your plans, or just check in to let everyone know that you are okay. Send your message to Twitter and Facebook or a shared map to let them watch your progress and send you a message.


The DeLorme inReach has a customizable tracking interval that can be set before you leave if you’re using the device as a standalone or set with the PN-60w or Android application while you are in the field. Set the interval to report every two minutes if you want to share more detail or reduce it to update once an hour if you’re sharing less detail.

Along with the satellite messaging capabilities, both the PN-60w and the inReach Android app will continue to deliver the same top-quality DeLorme Topographic mapping data with roads and trails, detailed contour and land cover information, points of interest and the DeLorme Atlas & Gazetteer descriptions. We are also working to make the DeLorme Map Library available through the Android application allowing users to view aerial imagery, USGS quad sheets, Canadian topographic maps, and NOAA nautical charts, all available when beyond cell phone coverage.


The DeLorme inReach will require a subscription to access the tracking, messaging, and SOS features. Current plans are to offer three levels: Safety, Recreation, and Pro, with prices starting at $9.95 per month for the safety plan and increasing to offer more in-plan message and tracking units. Plan options will include the ability to move between plan level, if, for example, you find yourself very active in the summer months but only needing safety features during the winter months.

A quick recap in case you only looked at the pictures:

  • inReach – A new two-way communicator that works with the PN-60w or an Android OS device.
  • Send and receive text messages outside of cell phone range with friends, family, Facebook/Twitter, or emergency services.
  • Tracking lets friends and family watch you in real time on a map back home.
  • The DeLorme Map Library with topographic, aerial, nautical, and more – all can be downloaded (from within data range) for use outside of cell phone data coverage.
  • The messaging plans start at $9.95/month and can be adjusted between levels.

I was able to send my first messages this week so be sure to keep an eye on the DeLorme blog for more details as we move through the development process. There will be opportunities to see the device in action at trade shows and events this summer so stay tuned for those announcements as well. In the meantime, feel free to post questions here, I’ll be updating with new information and would love to hear your thoughts on this exciting new DeLorme product!

Chip Noble
UI Design

324 Comments on “DeLorme inReach—two-way satellite communication

  1. Another great tool from DeLorme! I cannot wait to get my hands on this. Any estimated release date or price? Thanks so much for the blog post, will be a great device for us all!

  2. Staying connected AND on the map is essential!

    Any thoughts about crossplatform to Apple (iPhone/ietc.)? Most apps for the Android started as App for Apple products.

    Looking good DeLorme🙂

  3. What is included with the basic plan? what are the other plans like? is there a 1 or 2 year contract, or can you cancel at any time?

    any charge for the maps on the phone? can you get maps on the phone, without buying an InReach?

  4. This InReach is doing what I thought my Spot would end up doing. I just called Spot to see if it were possible to fix the Spot to send signals more often than one every ten minutes, they told me no . I also have a GoPro Hero camera. I don’t suppose the inReach will have the capabilities to send photo’s? I’m riding the Utah trails this summer and take a lot of pictures.
    No matter, I’ll take one. I was on the Spot list for a long time so just as well get on the inReach list and be among the first to have one. It sounds like just what I’m looking for.

  5. Wow!! I guess SPOT is going in the drawer!!!

  6. Nick N: We’re shooting for October with a price around $250 for the hardware. You all know how nervous I get when you ask me for dates and prices but that’s where things are at right now.

    Tommweiss: Great question about cross-platform… There’s a lot of interest here in the building for iPhone support. We’ve started with the Android platform and will be watching to see how things go. There are some extra steps to get things squared away for the Apple platform but I’m hopeful that public interest in the DeLorme inReach will justify the business case.

    James Barton: All plans involve a one year contract with monthly billing. The Safety plan was described in the blog post. This will give the user unlimited SOS messages and SOS tracking and will offer a small number of messages to send to friends and family each month. All plans offer “pay as you go” pricing too. The Recreation and Pro plans offer a larger number of messages each month. Topographic maps will be available for free download if you purchase an inReach device. If you don’t buy the inReach you can still get maps, you’ll just need to pay either ala carte or by subscription for them. The Map Library content will also be available ala carte or by subscription as it is now. I’ll write a separate blog post with the details of the billing and Map Library structure once things are finalized.

    Mel Rothlisberger: Good idea about sending photos via satellite but unfortunately that would be a very large amount of data compared to the very small text messages that we are sending with the inReach device. Still, I’m glad to hear that you’re interested in the product. I think you will find the ability to receive confirmation and reply messages to be very exciting!

    Thank you all for your feedback. Keep the questions coming… I’ll get some specific posts out to give a little more detail on some of them.

    Chip Noble
    UI Design

  7. Very nice. I’m one of the zillion people interested in iPhone support. Please keep me in mind if you need beta testers for that.

  8. Looks sweet. What is the switch next to the SOS button on the inReach device? A lockout for the SOS or just a power switch? I’ve always liked the cover on the Spot’s SOS button to prevent accidental activation.

  9. Paul, that looks like the power button in the upper left. I’m gonna guess it is a lock for the SOS button.

    Chip, is that a “life-size” pic, and do you have physical specs for the unit? (size, weight, batteries, etc.)

    External AC/DC power for remote site/vehicle use?

  10. Yeah, I noticed the power button after. I can’t tell if that’s a lock that snaps open and closed or a sliding lever you need to hold while you press the button. Either way it looks a little more complicated than I’d like. I hope it’s something you can do easily with only one hand.

  11. Will this report your altitude?

    Would be very useful to us glider pilots who are currently using the SPOT, might be the reason we would make the transition to your product.

  12. Great to see some competition with SPOT.

    Please include Elevation (or altitude as the case may be) in the message content sent during tracking. Glider pilots have been asking for this from SPOT since the beginning and it would be hugely valuable in winning over SPOT users to the Delorme option.

  13. Why didn’t you make it iPhone compatible?

  14. Paul Ybarrondo: There is a lock slider to the left of the SOS button that prevents it from being accidentally pressed. It was designed to comply with the RTCM SC-128 standard for SENDs (that’s Radio Technical Commission for Maritime Services Subcommittee 128 for Satellite Emergency Notification Devices). The standard calls for two separate physical actions to trigger SOS. It has to be done with one hand and it has to be done while wearing a glove. We’ve designed a lock that you press in and slide to the left freeing the SOS button to be pushed in. It is not spring loaded and will snap in place either open or closed. There’s a bright “red is dead” safety warning when in the unlocked position. It’s quite simple really, I’m pleased with the design.
    DavidC: I don’t have a weight on the device although I was at the mechanical design review for the waterproofing test and was pleased to see that initial tests show the device will float. Physical dimensions are as follows: height: 3.36 inches not including antenna, 4.78 inches including antenna, width: 2.85 inches, depth: 1.73 inches. We’re recommending AA eLithium batteries for longest use but the device will also work with standard AA and NiMH batteries. While the device currently only supports two AA batteries, we’ve designed it to support additional power configurations should the market show interest in that kind of accessory.
    Buzz and Morgan: Absolutely, the device will report altitude/elevation in the GPS data that gets sent with a message. This is very important to us. Speed, Heading, and Elevation will be reported unless you’re sending a reference point directing someone to a location you are not physically occupying. Location is great but a lot can be determined by knowing the other vector information from the GPS device. I’m glad to hear that this will be a valuable piece of information for glider pilots. You should send me an e-mail with more details about how you are using these kind of systems. I don’t have as much experience with flight use case scenarios as I do with hiking, cycling, and driving scenarios.
    Chadd: There were some additional requirements for iPhone compatibility so we started with the Android platform. We’re definitely watching feedback like yours and others to gauge interest in the iPhone market so that we can present a business case to support the effort.

    Again, thank you all for your feedback. We’ll keep working to answer questions as they come in.

    Chip Noble
    UI Design

  15. Thanks for the quick reply, Chip. Single-handed in a glove works for me! This looks sweet! Did I say that already?

  16. Exciting news!!!
    It’s encouraging that you seem to avoid the service mistakes that keep people away from SPOT.
    Can’t wait to get my hands on it! 🙂
    Are you also planning to support the iPhone (I sure hope so)?

  17. I see you are talking Android OS rather than phones. So we should be considering iOS rather than the iPhone. Comparing apples to apples, so to speak, the number of people using iOS far out numbers those who are using Android. Over here they claim 37.9 million using iOS devices (two of which are mine) vs. 23.8 million using Android devices. I’m not much at marketing, but the number of potential users seems like a prime item to consider.

  18. Chip, great that delorme is providing more data around positioning as part of the message. I’d be glad to fill you in on how the soaring community is utilizing Spot as well as the shortcomings that have bugged many of us.

    If you can shoot me an email offline based off my profile in the forum I can send you a number of use cases and some relevant links to a few other integrations being done that we are leveraging in the soaring community.


  19. Agree, need iPhone and iPad support. This would be awesome on the iPad…

  20. Count me in on the need to have iPhone support. Come on Chip, you do not need more incentive to start work on it now….

  21. Count me as one with interest in iOS support, although I’ve been too cheap to spring for smartphone service charges so far (don’t know how long I’ll be able to hold out on that). But I would love it if you could take advantage of the iPod touch’s wifi capabilities to download maps and bluetooth connections for inReach communications (if that’s the protocol you’re employing).

  22. Awesome! count me as an iPhone user for your business case though🙂

  23. Seems there’s significant (customer) support for the Apple platform expressed here.

    While I can see me with my iPad2 in a remote camping scenario accessed by 4X4, I do not see me remote hiking with the iPad! Given that I do, however, see me hiking with my iPod touch.

    Let’s let DeLorme proceed on their wonderful conception, then, in time, they will necessarily yield to market pressures to fulfill the Apple consumer market, eh😉

    From my arm chair, I notice that most professional apps developed for the Apple, was cross-platformed to the Android. Even some amateur apps were quickly ported over. Must not be that complicated.

    Seems to me that the discipline Apple brings to the acceptance process for iTunes has value to the consumer who wants bug free, user-friendly ware. That said, count me in the camp of wishing DeLorme would first develop for Apple … sigh …

    Until then I’ll be happly with my PN-60SEw and my (hope to be) InReach!

  24. Well, I guess that I will have to get one before I see Paul Y, tomw, Chris D, or RNCS again or the envy will be the end of me.

  25. Can you tell us what the release date and the MSRP of the unit will be ?


  26. Chip, since there’s no screen on the inReach per se, will there be some way to read an incoming text message on a PN-60w, or will that require a smartphone?

    I’m very excited by this, but I’m thinking it has to support iOS before I would buy one.

  27. Another great product from Delorme.
    Like the PN-60w, I really wish Delorme provide oversea maps. This is especially invaluable when you are hiking in Tibet, Australia or anywhere round the world.
    It would be a killer product for all adventurer. Regardless this is a great evolution to the everyday GPS !

  28. Chip, I know how Delorme can sell me two inReach and another PN-60w: Just tell me that while both sets are in the field a message can be sent from one inReach/60w to another set through the communications satellite and whatever other hardware/software may be needed.

  29. WWDC today in San Francisco……More good news for Apple fans… Would be great seeing this run on the new iOS software that will be announced today.

  30. I’m pretty excited about the inReach. I’m also well aware of the fact, it cannot do everything we all want it to do.
    If it did, the size would be as big as a 5 gal. gas can and use two twenty lb. die hard batteries.
    I think that is the problem with so many of the devices we use now. They try to make them do just to many things with one unit.
    I guess the old saying, “Keep it simple, stupid” should apply to some things at least.
    If the inReach will do what it’s being advertised to do right now and nothing more, that’s one hell of a job for the little guy.
    The more things that’s added to it, the less rugged it will be. So, the next six months will be pretty tough for DeLorme and Mr. Noble to stave off all of us that want’s only one more little thing attached. So , I’ll just set back and watch the show. Never mind the idea I had for the beer nuts and raisin holder in case you do get lost. With De Lorme’s track record, I don’t think many of us will be disappointed at the end product.

  31. RNCS: That’s a good point about iOS and Android OS, we are supporting the operating system and not just phones. Conversations are already going here in the building based on feedback from this post so thank you all for speaking up.

    Al, Gasport, Max Bramel, Sam D, Tommweiss, Joe L… We’re definitely hearing the feedback for iOS. We’re starting with the Android OS but will be putting together stats based on feedback like that being reported here. Thank you all for chiming in!

    Max Bramel: You’ll be able to download maps using wifi and 3G. Tracking, SOS and Messaging are the only communications that will go through the Iridium satellite system however. If people do their planning before leaving cell range they should be okay with map coverage.

    Ray Harris: We are targeting October and a retail price of $250 for the hardware.

    DavidC: The PN-60w will have an interface very similar to the messaging interface you see in the blog screenshots. I’ll put together shots from the PN for a blog post this week that organizes all of these questions.

    Chpang: We currently offer a World Map in our NetLink Map Library that will work on the PN-60w and the Android platform when it releases. This will give you topographic data and major roads for international use. We also offer a Digital Globe subscription with world coverage for aerial imagery. We’re working through the details to bring that content to the Android platform.

    Marius Coomans: Good question, we haven’t talked about APIs yet but I’ll let the dev team know that there’s interest.

    Mel Armold: I have to thank you, I completely forgot to mention that the system is absolutely designed to let two people talk to each other when they are on a trip together! If you are using the inReach with your PN-60w or Android OS device you can definitely send a message to another inReach user, anywhere in the world, and communicate with them. I’m very excited for bird hunting season because I often get out of sight of my dad and will very much appreciate being able to communicate with him or with my family back at our camp. Two way communication is priceless in that and many other situations I find myself in regularly. Excellent question!

    Mel Rothlisberger: Keep the suggestions coming. While the physical hardware is being locked down, the firmware will continue to be improved even after release. I like to hear good ideas from users like yourself and others. Many of our best features come directly from customer interaction through the blog, forums, and other communications. I can’t promise the snack pouch but you never know…

    Thanks all for the great feedback!

    Chip Noble
    UI Design

  32. How about a dummy cord hole? I lost my spot cause I didn’t have it dummy corded. I’m totally perplexed as to why so few devices have some what to dummy-cord.

  33. This is an extremely cool product.

    I’d also like to see an API allowing third-party apps to integrate with it (especially on Android).

    Specifically, I’d love to be able to integrate messaging as well as be able to pull tracks out of the inReach on-demand (and efficiently, i.e. “pull all new points since point number X” or since X time, etc). It would also be nice to be able to pull out the GPS time (and maybe a timezone) for when phones aren’t connected to a network (i.e. when traveling to another country).

    If you need any more input regarding design of the API, I’d love to provide input as I have an app in-progress that I’d love to integrate.

  34. It’d also be really cool to have some sort of mechanism that’d allow delivery of messages to a webapp (other than facebook/twitter).

    On a recent trip to the Cook Islands I had a need to tell family of a flight change. Calling was difficult and expensive, and I knew they wouldn’t check email in time. If I could deliver a message to a webapp, I could have that app send a text or make a phone call for me (For example, via Twilio).

    An example implementation might be to connect a webapp via OAuth, and allow the user to set which services messages get posted to.

    Then I could just add something like “!” which my app would watch for and execute. (i.e. “Flight redirected thru NZ, will land LAX at 7:30PM PST Friday !phone” to notify certain people via phone).

  35. Oops, “!” should be “!command”

  36. Chip,

    Aside from providing you with some use cases and feedback for the soaring community, we might also be able to help with an API strategy or at least with some tools to help prospective API consumers. Shoot me an email and I’ll at least fill you in with the use cases that may highlight some of the API needs as well.

  37. Are you also exploring compatibility with the Windows Phone 7 platform? I am very interested in the product for the two-way messaging, but have no interest in an Android phone or the pn-60w GPS unit.

    P.S. A tiny black & white screen and chiclet keyboard can’t be that expensive to add to a future unit🙂.

  38. If a iOS version comes out for this, I will get this item. I’m getting really sick of my family, friends, and girlfriend being all worried about me when I’m out backpacking for days on end. This is also a great item for the times when I go out on the motorcycle cross country.

    I also love the monthly pricing. It is very reasonable.

  39. How about the possibility to activate the satellite subscription for specific months only instead of a whole year. I can imagine myself going on a few interesting hiking trips during the year, say May, July and August and a snowboarding trip in January. The rest of the year, I would be at work or at least in cell phone range.

    It would be nice if you could more easily pay for subscription when you need it and not have to pay when you’re at home for a few months.

  40. Count me in for one when it works with my iPhone.

  41. Any possibility of getting a month to month option instead of a 1 year contract?

    I can see using this for boating instead of a pricy EPIRB when out of cell phone range, but would only have use for it 3 or 4 months out of the year.


  42. I can see this as a nice addition to the tools that offshore yachtsmen have at their disposal. Do you have any plans to publish an API or even an SDK that would allow third party vendors to interface via bluetooth? Being able to interface to existing yacht systems would allow things like automatic reporting of ship status, internal systems, VMG, etc.

  43. Chip, this looks like a fantastic device. Having accidentally triggered my SPOT SOS, I really appreciate the way you describe your device working. I may now finally be able to come back to a Delorme product and your excellent customer service! Great job!

  44. Develop for both Android and iOS, disregard childish (and numerically incorrect) claims of RNCS about targeting iOS as it is the most “popular”, that was nonsense (even at that very day). Submit both apps, Android will be approved first (most likely). Apple glass in phones are remarkably fragile (especially iPhone4) and your product is posed to be used in rather harsh environments, Corning/Gorilla glass is more fit for hard impact and resist quite a beating. Just my too cents.

  45. What will emergency services have to do to respond to an emergency signal?

  46. Please count me in with those who would like to have an iPhone app. Frankly, I can’t imagine why the iPhone app was released simultaneously given how large a segment the iPhone has of the smart phone market (although I do note that DeLorme products are not Mac compatible). I would strongly suggest that you do an iPad app at the same time, it is not that much additional effort. With the excellent star programs, etc., iPads are showing up a lot in at base camps and on hikes, often in areas without cell service. And, not all users will be backpackers who might not want to carry the iPad.

    I shake my head sadly at DeLorme’s obvious anti-Apple stance. Must be nice not to need/want customers.

    – David

  47. I’m thinking about recommending this product for yacht racing. This is now done by specialty providers such as iBoat (

    For that, update intervals might need to be as frequent as one minute. How frequently can updates be sent?

  48. @David – I doubt that DeLorme has an “anti-Apple stance”. The simple truth is that developing for Android is easier because it is an open source platform and Apple isn’t. I’m sure they want to sell to Apple users as much as any other company, it’s just harder to develop for that platform, particularly if you are just starting out with a new product and want to prove that it works with smart phones.

    I’m sure they will eventually come out with an Apple app, it’s just easier and faster to develop for Android as an open platform.

  49. What is the battery life on a charge? How does it charge? USB? Could solar chargers do the trick?

    What mapping would it use for sharing with friends and family? Google maps? Bing? Other?

  50. I’m a scuba diver and when going to new locations, it’s always nice to know where exactly you started and where you finished. I know that GPS doesn’t work underwater, so for me, having this on the boat would be great to track the distance i’ve dived and the location. Was drift diving in Cozumel a few months ago and this info would’ve been great as the currents can carry you pretty far. Great to hear that it’ll float. I agree with the above comment regarding a dummy cord hole as it’s easy to lose something overboard in a boat.

    I also echo the iOS support. I have an iPad and I use it on all my trips. Getting a mapping app on that platform would be great!

    Can’t wait till this hits the market.

  51. Oh, please just give us a one line LCD screen and a thumb stick to type messages. What is this “Android needed” nonsense?

    Note to software people: not everything needs to be powered by Android (I do develop for Android, yes).

  52. Needs iOS support. Pair it with an iPod touch and you don’t even need a device that is tied to a cell/data plan (which makes sense since the point of this inReach device is to get you connected where there is no cell service).

    Android? Non-starter

  53. This would be AWESOME for cruising in my sailboat. I use SPOT now, and have thought about springing for a sat-phone, but could not justify the cost. This would be the sweet spot.

    BUT…. what’s with no iOS support? iPad is now my most used Nav equipment, inReach would be a perfect complement for messaging.

    Android-only is just goofy.

  54. Other companies develop for both platforms simultaneously. If you had to develop for one, you should at least develop for the platform that has arguably the most users (depending on how you count phones). DeLorme products, like it’s software and maps, are not Mac compatible. Why is that? It may not be an anti-Apple bias but DeLorme does not sell products that are Apple compatible. Not going after the HUGE and growing base of iPhones, iPods & iPads is a business model that is well, goofy. I would be a huge DeLorme customer if their software and GPS devices like the PN-60 was Apple compatible. Until then, I will just buy the odd Gazetteer and check in from time to time; however, I buy everything else from DeLorme’s competitors who do not have the same limitations.

  55. Needs IPad and iPod Touch support for sure. And hopefully affordable text messaging at least Twitter length.

  56. When this launches, please make sure the android client .apk installer can be downloaded from your website, and not available though the Marketplace only.

    I can’t download the SPOT Connect client because I’m not in one of the permitted countries at present.

  57. I agree that Delorme needs to consider Apple users. I started using Delorme products on the PC but now have gone to the MAC. I tend to use my old Garmin GPS 60CSX a lot more then the PN 60. I hope they get the message soon and give some consideration to supporting Apple products.

  58. Is there going to be an firmware update to allow the inReach to work with the PN-60Wse or is it only going to work with Andorid for now?

  59. One feature that would make this super attractive (to me) would be a location readout – say a simple lcd, no graphics, just text. Preconfigure using pc for lat/lon or utm.

    I don’t want to carry my cell phone or another gps….

  60. What? If you have to ask how much it costs then you probably can’t afford one. ; )

  61. Sounds like a beginning of a good product line. It’s funny to note the uproar of the Apple zombies. Mariners aside, iPads on “remote expeditions”, really? Do you actually need satellite messaging on trips to the hipster shops? Don’t worry, your market segment will be not be ignored and compatibility with Apples will be rolled out. I’m just really glad that they are releasing a product for people that spend their money on actual outdoor activities rather than trendy pieces of flare first..

  62. Brilliant idea! Any word on potential availability in Australia? Would be very useful when out bush (or sea) here in the land down under. My Android phone usually goes everywhere with me already, so it would be a very welcome addition. Also, any further details on battery life and such? Thanks in advance! =)

  63. You might want to explore the amazing capabilities of this exceptionally light, laptop alternative. It is an amazing device for folks who are in the backcountry doing real work as well as for folks during research in the field.

    Why wouldn’t DeLorme want to be at the cutting edge of backcountry electronics?

  64. Michael Steele: We’ve got an attachment point on the side for a tether or lanyard, good request and as a dropper of expensive technology, something I require in all of our products.

    Pete Doyle and Andy: Thanks for the feedback on the API. We’re pleased to see the interest in integration with the inReach. The system will give you the ability to export data, either through connecting to a computer or pulling the data out of the website where you’ll manage your account. Pete, regarding your comment about web apps, you can send your message to SMS. I’ll pass your ideas about OAuth and Twilio around to see what the dev team thinks might already be possible. Andy, I like your ideas about bluetooth integration, it makes me think of some of the data logging features we’ve built in our XMap professional product line. We’ll keep your ideas in mind as we move forward.

    Tom Alphin: Windows Phone 7, iOS, and Blackberry are all topics of conversation here in the building. We’ve focused on the Android OS as a starting point but we’re excited to see all the interest in broader support for other markets.

    Chris: I’m with you on the “peace of mind” component to this product. The ability to check-in and let people know you’re okay or more importantly get emergency information from home when you’re out for a long hike really sells this product in my mind. We’ll keep the talks going for the iOS and see where the business case takes us.

    Peter and Ron: We’re offering the ability to move between the Pro, Recreation, and Safety plans. It offers flexibility for people who will use the device a lot in the summer or winter months while always giving you that emergency feature should you need it. We’re not offering the ability to activate/deactivate a subscription as there are just too many issues with making sure people can use the device for SOS. We don’t want someone to try to send an emergency message when they’ve disabled their device.

    Glenn Charles: Great to hear that you’re familiar with DeLorme’s customer service. Hopefully the inReach meets your needs and we can work together again!

    Red: Typical emergency services would receive a message from a user in distress and then be able to respond to them either with a change to the SOS LED if they are using the inReach in standalone mode or respond with an actual message if they have a PN-60w or an Android. At the same time they would be contacting the account holder’s emergency contacts to learn more about what the user might be doing. After following the protocol they would then contact the appropriate Search and Rescue organization for the area where the distress message came from and participate in the rescue process until the case is closed with a resolution. There’s a lot of information out there about the SEND (satellite emergency notification device) industry if you wanted to learn more.

    David Dornblaser: I’ll include your feedback in the “please support iOS” list, thank you! Please don’t confuse our company’s need to focus on one platform at a time and build strong business cases for development efforts as being anti-Apple, it takes a lot of effort to develop hardware devices and accompanying software. Users like yourself are providing good evidence to support an iOS effort but we still need to follow our process.

    Andy: Tracking intervals can be set as high as 2 minute intervals. I see that you’re suggesting 1 minute… we avoided that rate because it will use monthly message allocations very quickly. I’ll keep your scenario in mind as we talk through designs though.

    Chris: The inReach will support AA batteries, either Lithium, Alkaline, or NiMH. There’s a range of battery life categories that we’ll be testing against. Battery life in storage, battery life turned on but not transmitting, battery life while tracking, battery life while sending text messages… Early testing has shown that the device will send messages for over 7 days on a single set of batteries. We’ll have more detailed battery tests as we move through development. The website we’ll be using to share maps with friends and family is being designed and developed right now. I don’t have details beyond saying people viewing the site will be able to see DeLorme’s Topographic data. Details on the rest of the site will be available as we move through the project cycle. Last part… the device will meet the IPX7 rating for waterproofing, 3 feet for 30 minutes. It also floats!

    Bryan Chan: That’s a cool use case you’ve described. Having had a chance to drift dive on the wall in Cozumel on two different occasions I can appreciate how far you can travel in that current! There will be a lanyard attachment point for securing the device so you don’t have to worry about losing it overboard. Thanks for the iOS feedback, we’ll add you to the count of people supporting that business case.

    Bill D, Ascagar, and Mikofox: Thank you, iOS request noted!

    Anonymous: Good request to have the .apk installer available from our website. The application will be available for free through the Marketplace but I see the dilemma you’ve described. We wanted to make sure we were in the Marketplace for all the people that can’t side-load applications on their AT&T phones but you’ve hit on a different problem. I’m sure we can find a solution for users in your situation.

    Calvin: The inReach is currently being developed for the PN-60w and the Android, there will be a firmware released at the same time the hardware becomes available.

    TomW: Thanks for the request to have an LCD readout on the inReach. Unfortunately this product will not include such an interface but we’ll keep your suggestion in mind for future projects.

    SamG and David Dornblaser: I appreciate you both posting opinions and keeping it polite for our readers. As I’ve been saying in these replies, while we started with the PN-60w and Android OS support, we’re putting together the business cases for other operating systems like the iOS. All the feedback from passionate Apple users has definitely been noticed in the company and we’ll be giving this strong consideration. We just need to make sure everything stays on course and on schedule for the October release of the inReach with PN-60w and Android support.

    Alex: Thanks for expressing interest in Australia! I’m not sure what our sales distribution will be in your area but I do know that we’ll have DeLorme world maps to give you topographic data and major roads. We’re also working on bringing the Map Library map types to the inReach products so hopefully that goes smoothly for our world coverage aerial imagery products.

    As always, thank you all for your great feedback! This has turned into one of our most productive blog posts and comment interactions to date, keep the questions coming!

    Chip Noble
    UI Design

  65. Looks good! You just swayed me to get a PN-60w. Good move on partnering with Iridium. They are the best, by a mile. I wish you could release them tho before I leave for a 14 day western yukon moose hunt in Sept. My girlfriend would be very happy if you did!

  66. Please consider releasing iOS application together with Android one. I do not want to get rid of my iPhone. I do not want to carry additional device during my trips either. If you add iPhone support this autumn, I’m ready to buy the device right away.

  67. I’m going to go on a bit of a tangent here. In my opinion, texting really drove the market toward an acceptance of non-voice mobile communications that led to smartphones. Texting was cheap in relation to voice and the power requirements meant that you could often text even when you couldn’t do voice. Texting wasn’t really ever intended as the primary feature. It was just a little tag-along side business that happened to boom.

    I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that your device-to-device and device-to-email/SMS/twitter texting will turn out to be the killer feature. All the other stuff is great and people like me might never get the device if not for those other features. Let me be first (at least here) to say that you’ll sell as many or more of these to people who don’t care about the safety features than to those who do. I have one of 100 cabins at a park that has no cell service. When I show up with one of these things, it’ll only take another few weeks for you to sell another 20 and within a year every cabin owner will have at least one and the vast majority of people trying to get some kind of phone service will stop doing that and just use these.

    If I was in charge of marketing, I’d be trying to figure out how to reach the ‘lake crowd’, not just the adventuring crowd. In light of that, you might want to accelerate whatever plans you have for iOS (for the record, I’m die-hard Android).

  68. Hi Chip,

    What is DeLorme’s position about continuing to sell and/or support the Spot device once inReach reaches the market? This has been the subject of discussion on a backpacking forum.

    I know that you don’t yet have inReach to market yet but I would like to throw an item on my wish list for the next generation. That is to have weather updates pushed to you based on your GPS location. At the very least, the NOAA warnings and watches. It would be nice to know what is coming at you when you are out of cell range.

    – David

    P.S. – I have the Spot Connect but I would love to have the features in the inReach.

  69. This is the first comment thread I have ever seen with no spelling mistakes!
    Makes me wonder if all those comments are a bit of sneaky advertising by DeLorme…

  70. Add me to the list of iOS requesters. I’m sending my SPOT Connect back after a month and a half of fruitless troubleshooting. If my experience is at all indicative of the Connect’s shortcomings, you have a golden opportunity here. But I will not be switching to Android.

    If you contract with an iOS developer now, you can bring out both platforms simultaneously, and I have no doubt that you will make your money back very quickly.

    You say that you’re not anti-Apple, and yet you call iOS users “passionate.” That’s sort of tipping your hand about what you really think about us and Apple, because all of us buy Apple gear because we’re irrational, brainwashed fanbois, not because their closed ecosystem allows them to create gear and software that simply works right out of the box, right? /sarcasm.

    Seriously, you want to make the InReach an immediate success? Bring it to market on the iOS platform for the start. Get your bean counters involved in this decision, the numbers are there.

  71. Now really….. They are quite ethical and did you ever hear of a spell checker?

  72. This looks like a very exciting product. I for one am glad you are going to release the Android App first, not everyone on the planet has an iThingy!!! We actually don’t have and Android phone, but a tablet (Notion Ink Adam – daylight viewable screen!!!)

  73. @tommweiss: Interesting you mention the iQue. On a similar note, my backpack buddies love their Garmin Rhinos. The ability to send each other location information has gotten the guys out of scrapes more than once. Unfortunately, Garmin doesn’t seem to have the same warm spot in their hearts for the Rhino – the pricing for the latest version of the product seems to indicate they really don’t want to sell any.

    Now, if DeLorme were to come out with a competitor to that, perhaps competition might work it’s magic…

  74. Ron Porter: Thanks for describing how you’d use the system. We recognize the how powerful word of mouth endorsements can be. I’m glad to see that you’ve found our blog post and that you’re an Android user. Hopefully the information you’ll read on our blog will make you curious enough to try out the system and then recommend it to others in your lake community!

    David Dornblaser: The DeLorme PN-60w & SPOT Communicator are still being sold and supported by our company. The new DeLorme inReach is the answer to all of the requests out there for two-way satellite communication. I like your suggestion to include NOAA weather information, it has come up several times since our blog post and I’ll be sure to add your idea to our feature request list.

    Hass: My secret for clean spelling… Firefox! It does an active spell check as I write my posts and replies. As for advertising… I manage the UI Design department here at DeLorme, I’m not in marketing. I’m definitely trying to spark interest in our new release but I’m not being sneaky about it. These blog posts are intended as a first look at what we’ve been working on for a while and a chance for us to hear what the public thinks of our effort. Keep an eye out for updates and you’ll see that everything’s open and honest.

    David Wood: Thank you for expressing your interest in iOS support. I can tell you that all of the Apple enthusiasm on the blog is definitely being monitored within the building. I’m afraid you’ve misinterpreted my use of the word “passionate.” I’m actually an iPhone user along with many of the employees here at DeLorme. Granted, I’m using an Android during this project for development but we’re in no way anti-Apple here.

    Andy: Don’t forget that you can send messages between DeLorme inReach devices from anywhere in the world. Think of it as the message and location information you’re describing from our competitor without any range restrictions. If I didn’t mention it in the blog, when your friend’s message comes in it will also be carrying your friend’s location and showing it on the map with your current location.

    More great comments, thanks everyone!

    Chip Noble
    UI Design

  75. So, the inReach monthly plans include a certain mount of free messages per month. Do these messages mean the pre-programmed SPOT-messages, SOS-messages and tracking messages? And to sent up to 160 character SMS you pay per message? What about receiving SMSs? Will the prices be along the usual Iridium pricing i.e. $0,40 per sent message or something completely different?

    I think you have most of the things right with this one: IPX7, compatible with Lithium AA batteries, can be used single handed while wearing gloves, etc. From my point of view it’s trivial which OS or phone it supports as long as there is a reasonably priced gadget available. Preferably a rugged gadget but rugged smartphones seem very, very rare at the moment. It’s cool that some people have passion for phones and stuff but in the end gear should be about means to an end, way to accomplish things.

  76. I and many of my friends who live in S Florida are avid boaters and spend a lot of time in the Bahamas well away from cell phone coverage. Almost to the person we all have iphones and/or ipads. We all would purchase an inReach if….need I say more?

  77. And few more things popped into my mind:
    – Are the pre-programmed messages plotted on a map and viewable online for all (like they are in SPOT)? This would be very nice thing so that you could only send your location only once or twice a day instead of constant tracking.This would be usefull for sharing backpacking trips and expeditions with public. And the messages and locations should stay viewable for a long period. SPOTs messages disappear after a week and that’s a big downside, many trips and expeditions lasta from two weeks to months and it would be cool to see all the progress at a glance.
    – Are the plans personal or per device? Per device would be good as it would enable borrowing the unit for friend or buying one in group and sharing it. If pland would be personal, that would be technically prohibbeted.

  78. Another strong vote for an iOS app; I would buy this product if it is on iOS (no use to me on Android).

  79. Hi there

    Can we use it in the UK. If so what maps can we use it with? I too would look forward to a. iPhone version

    Good development

  80. Yes i would also like to know if there will be a web service. xml feed, API or something so an external application could consume the tracking data. Also will the service be available in europe?

  81. I called DeLorme a while back, with the hopes they had a way of sending video with the PN/60. I would like a larger LED to mount in my ATV Rhino. It would be easier with a little larger map to watch my trail when traveling. They said No soap. So now I’m wondering, If I buy a Samsung Droid Charge, mount it in my Rhino, will this accomplish the same thing? I do not expect or want to replace my PN/60 with the Charge. I just would like a larger screen. Now, if this is the case. Do we flip a coin to see which unit I pay the monthly fee? Are do I go into bondage with DeLorme? This also brings up the old duplicate map question. Will it cost me twice for two sets of the same maps, or will the great Mr. DeLorme and his good looking, wonderful, happy go lucky, great and personable employee Mr. Noble only skin me once? I’m probably a bit late now for this information but, I will be running a lot of the ATV Trails in Utah all summer. If DeLorme would like me to test the inReach, I would be more than willing to do so. As bad as I need the money, I’ll go out on a limb and offer my services for free and throw in the use of my Rhino and new Droid Charge.

  82. One of the big limitations with the Spot Connect is that it requires a phone to activate the tracking feature, send OK messages, etc. While the phone can then be turned off, tracking will be stopped after 24 hours–requiring reactivation by turning the phone back on. Unlike the Spot 1 and Spot 2, the phone must also be turned on in order to send OK messages. The only feature that doesn’t require a phone is activating 911, which has a dedicated button.

    So, does the InReach have dedicated buttons to activate tracking, OK messages, 911, etc.–so that it still performs most of its functions even if the paired phone dies?


  83. Announce iPhone support and you’ve got my $250!

  84. Map Questions: Is the Android OS capable of using any of DeLorme’s maps right now?
    I was thinking in terms of practicing, if that is the right word, with the map & GPS systems, between now and when the inReach hits the market.

  85. PS: On the maps. How about adding an ATV on the Tracking Cursor icons?

  86. I am very interested in this product. I am getting back into backpacking and i am looking for a GPS device. Backpacker Magazine drew my attention to the DeLorme Earthmate PN-60w . However I have a Mac and your software is not compatible . Also I have read that the PN-60w may be too complex for the novice. Any chance you will have an upgrade to the PN-60w ? Would you recommend this to a beginner?

  87. another question will the same inreach work both on the PN-60w and andorid phone or will be a unit for each?

  88. Firstly, there’s another Australian that is very interested in this idea (and it has only been your understandable lack of detailed Australian maps in the past that has made me shop elsewhere for a handheld hiking/geocaching GPSr)

    To the iPhone users out there I’m going to have a stab at why they’ve gone for the Android first. I’m guessing the connectivity between the two devices is via bluetooth. Working in a photo lab, our photo kiosks allow the download of photos from people’s phones via bluetooth. With a few “minor” phone exceptions- the biggest being the iPhone. The number of people we have to send away without nice hardcopy prints because they have an iPhone is enormous! Is this the fault of the photo kiosks (of which we changed brands recently, and still have the same “problem”)? No. Even with the abuse I’ve copped because “You should be able to print MY photos!” It isn’t actually the fault of the kiosks.

    I have three children who each have an iPod Touch, a sister with a 3G iphone and a brother with an iphone4; all with bluetooth and a camera. Can we send photos to the kiosks via bluetooth with them? No, the kiosks are not a “recognized” device on the Apples. Can I transfer photos via bluetooth to/from the two different nokia phones (which send to each other quite happily) to the Apples? Nope, not a recognized device. Fault of the Nokias? No. The Nokias are quite happy bluetoothing to the kiosks, and to/from eachother, and to an android phone, which also happily sends photos to the kiosk. Android to/from Apple though? You guessed it. Not a recognized device! I s this the Android’s fault? I hate to say it, but no it’s not! I can pair them but as soon as I try to send from the android… photo not sent! How about transferring images, via bluetooth, touch to touch? They don’t even detect one another (I believe there is an app available to allow ipod to ipod photo transfers, but some require jailbreaking your phone. Are you beginning to see a picture here?

    If you know your iphone well, you’d know that Apple has very tightly locked down the iphone/ipod’s bluetooth capability to just two uses: multiplayer games (so one ipod can play against another within bluetooth range) and some bluetooth headsets/music players and car hands-free devices. To everything else it is bluetooth mute. And from what I’ve read, iOS5 doesn’t change this incommunicado condition.

    This is my guess as to why Android was the first OS of choice; it actually talks to other devices, ands listens back. Via Bluetooth. Am I right?

    (Full Disclosure: I own an Android phone, the above being one of the reasons why. The other is that I got it cost me very little, so isn’t going to break the bank if I loose it bush-walking or geocaching, or whatever. I absolutely love the kid’s ipods; they look great, are incredibly responsive, the touch screen and retina display is to die for, and the Apple apps are certainly, as a general rule, still well ahead in terms of quality. But I’ve never had to send an Android user away at the photo kiosk, and there are (like it or not) now a lot of them out there!)

  89. @ESSGEETHREE. The bluetooth profile is very limited on the iPhone. I have been an iPhone user since they have come out. It has always been a bit behind other phones. I know my old Sony Ericcson flip phone has a more extensive profile than the iPhone. There has been some talks that the iOS 5 might change this though.

  90. This is exactly what I have been waiting for. A GPS messenger that sends and receives messages while I am out of the cell phone coverage areas. I want one! I hike a lot and this could be a lifesaver.

    Does it track bread crumb GPS coordinates by itself? I would like to connect my smart phone only to it to send custom messages and or receive them on my rest stops (to save the phones battery life while hiking).

  91. I’m a sailor and this device is really exciting to me. I also have several iDevices and would appreciate support for that platform.

  92. Chip,

    The sailplane (full-size gliders), hang-gliding and para-sailing communities use SPOT devices extensively for cross-country soaring contests (for an example, please take a look at Events). However, we are a bit frustrated by SPOT’s fixed 10-minute update rate and the lack of altitude reporting, so your device would be a much better fit for our needs.

    We in the saiplane community would love to help DeLorme showcase this product in our World Gliding Championships to be held in Uvalde, Tx July/Aug 2012 ( At the moment, we plan to use SPOT devices for contestant tracking, but this would be a perfect way for DeLorme to gain traction in the sailplane, hang-gliding, and para-sailing markets.

    Please drop me an email if you (or your marketing people) are at all interested in this opportunity.



  93. Sailplane pilots have a special need for a device like this, as it will produce a real time, externally stored, log of the flight. In the unfortunate event of an accident, this would allow first responders to home in on the crash site. Consider that Steve Fossett was missing for over a year.

    Unlike the typical airplane flight that has a planned course and ETA, a sailplane pilot may have a planned destination, but the course traveled is almost never direct. We glide from one source of lift to the next. And if conditions ahead deteriorate, and a different direction looks better, the original task might be dropped completely in favor of the better looking conditions. In the California / Nevada desert areas, we very often fly courses of various shapes of over 500 miles in a single day.

    I currently fly with a SPOT and ELT (Emergency Locator Transmitter), with a ham radio APRS tracking device “in the mail”. The ELT has a terrible track record of activating and being found. So I’m relying on the other technology to help me if I have a problem.

    I also live in “the middle of nowhere”, so a typical weekend drive to a picnic, hike, etc., can easily turn into an adventure.


  94. Chip,

    It just occurred to me that you might be referring to ‘Altitude Reporting’ in the same way that SPOT does – i.e. a ‘pseudo altitude’ equal to the terrain elevation at the reported lat/lon position. Is this what InReach does, or does it actually report GPS 3-D altitude?



  95. Hi, as a Volentear SAR member I am curious How the cordanats are given to Emergency responce, do thay go to a central dispach? forwareded to the nearest 911 dispach? or is thare a way to acess them from the field? Ie. someones missing with no destress call, can Emerency Serveses [police] quickly acess the data?

  96. I would also be interested in iPhone service. And would also be willing to help beta test. I’m a paraglider pilot and have worked as a mountain guide in the past. I may have some contacts to put this through some good testing.

  97. I had quit going into the woods for fear I would not be able send/receive texts. I can no longer function without being connected to some kind of network/monthly service plan.

    What a godsend!

  98. iOS please. I would also like the weather info option as previously suggested. Can’t wait for this.

  99. I too am a sailplane pilot who flies large 700-1000km triangles in the SW U.S. Currently my SPOT’s 10 minute update is just not frequent enough to be very specific about location if I should have to land in remote locations.

    Looking forward to this new product with 2 min updates, GPS altitude … and reasonable pricing.

    Frank Paynter’s idea of “show casing” this for the World Soaring Championships summer of 2012 is an excellent idea.

    Walt Rogers, WX

  100. I’m a Driod X and Asus Transformer Tablet Android user as well as an iPad. Android has a growing base of users over a diverse number of platforms / manufactures. From what I have heard, Android is a much friendlier and open platform to develop and sell or deploy apps on than the Apple app store. A great place to iron out and quickly deploy updates I believe as well. Seems I’m always reading excuses on my iTunes store about how the latest updates is awaiting approval, done, but stuck in approval… I personally like both the iOS and Android platform so my hope is also to see it come out on the iOS. I gave up my AT&T iPhone due to poor coverage and switched to Verizon and have had great coverage. Alas, they did not have the iPhone back when I switched. BTW: so far, I’ve been putting more use into my Asus Transformer with the Android Honeycomb operating system at work than my iPad…

    About time I mention…. GREAT PRODUCT!!! Wish I had one already. As an Assistant Scoutmaster with two boys in a BSA Troop I’ll definitely be taking this along on our outings. Wish they had it now with them while they are at the New Mexico Philmont Scout Ranch. It would be great to watch their progress as they progress through their two weeks…. It would be a great addition to the Troops supplies and a communication tool that could be used by the Troop during outings in a remote location. As a High Adventure Troop, we have had a few incidences were by which we could have used the system to summon help. Philmont Scout Ranch could use it as a communications tool in the back country. Or Rangers in the middle of nowhere with limited radio coverage, it would be a great reporting tool for with quick short updates etc…
    Don’t forget to advertise in the BSA Scouting Magazine that leaders read. The Boy’s Life Magazine is geared to the boys, but the Scouting magazine towards the leaders… Of course, they do a gadget thing I believe in the Boy’s Life Magazine as well….

    Is it out yet, can I pick one up, where… Oh… darn… October… Hmmmm I guess I’ll have to wait… If you need Beta Tester’s I have a Troop full of leaders that would love to share and put one through use and provide feedback… Ok… just dreaming😉

    Feature questions … It would be great if the unit stored track information and the user could simply turn on their cell phone and download the track information and update their phone’s app. This would help conserve phone battery power. Using the phone as the control device, one could manage stored tracks on the device, access them, download them, erase them etc… Might even be great to save batter to be able to tell the device to store the track for a given amount of time and burst the data at intervals via satellite. This should use less power than constantly trying to communicate with the satellites. How about user defined parameters such as if there was a sudden loss of altitude it would immediately send location information and messages to a defined contact until you shut down the messages via the phone app or power cycle the unit. Maybe the user defines a rout, uploads it and if you deviate from rout by a user defined amount it again starts sending messages more often to your phone and/or defined contact until you adjust your rout or access the system via your control device and adjust your rout or cancel the alert. None of these would be SOS calls, just alerts to a contact you designate that should be aware of your activities and changes from planned routs or a possible sudden change in altitude that may cause them need to find you and make sure everything is fine or help you pick up the pieces…

    So with all these ideas people are throwing out there…Will the system support Firmware updates?

    Is it October yet? Thanks for a great idea. Can’t wait to get one!


  101. Count me as another interested sailplane/glider pilot! SPOT devices have gained a lot of traction over the last 2 years in our community. I finally bowed to pressure from my fellow contest pilots and bought a SPOT; but its shortcomings are really noticeable for us. And so far the SPOT folks haven’t really been responsive to requests for changing the reporting interval or including altitude information (3D GPS fix information).

    This proposed device could quickly overtake SPOT’s market share in the glider-pilot community: cheaper than SpiderTracks, better than the SPOT, and more “real-time” tracking for both safety and for monitoring things like contests.

    Chip – Frank’s right, if DeLorme got ~50 of these units in the cockpits at the 2012 World Championships in Uvalde, TX it would be a big marketing / sales opportunity! The sport of soaring is not a huge one (~20,000 pilots in the US and maybe 200,000 worldwide), but its a solid potential market, with a real need for this kind of device.


    –Noel Wade

  102. Yes, finally, Delorme learned what they needed from SPOT and are gonna make their own , better product. Whew saved me from buying a Spot, and it’s ridicolous pricing. Even though Delorme is still looking at $100 / year for basic services wether it’s used or not, at least the InReach is an all-in-one product.
    I would really like to see a short term pricing plan for part-time adventurers. 1, 3,& 6 month terms, where tracking, & pre-arranged messages are included, w 2 way communications charged per use.
    When I’m in the wild I don’t need more stupid no-stop texting, telling me about all the pretty things. It’s for survival and the re-assurance to know that help is actually on the way.
    Cmon Delorme, I’ll wait for your product, but don’t get greedy like Spot and overcharge for everything. Volume sales win everytime and u can then put Spot outta business. Thanks….

  103. @Gregg – I agree, short term contracts are essential to me when deciding if I’m going to buy something like this. 1 year contract does not make sense for me as I live in a country where a device like this would only be used 4-6 months of the year.

  104. Regarding inReach and iOS:

    Our household has 3 iPhones, 2 iPads and 2 iPods. 0 Android devices. We’ll probably get an Android device when Apple buys Google (LOL).

    So….hope DeLorme recognizes that there is a big (missed?) opportunity in getting inReach to work with iOS

  105. Sorry for the delay in replying to these posts… I’ve started traveling more for summer events. Went to GeoWoodstock for the 4th of July. I’ll see if I can do a better job of keeping up.

    Korpijaakko: We’ll talk more about the plans once things finalize at DeLorme. We’re very close. The monthly plans all include some number of full 160 character text messages along with the SOS messages. Users will need to pay to send and receive messages. I’ll release full pricing details soon.

    David Weston: Thanks for the feedback, I’ll add you to the list of iOS users.

    Korpijaakko Part 2: There will be a shared map displaying messages and locations on the map. The map locations will be visible for a longer period of time. Subscription plans are per device.

    Chas: DeLorme offers a world map with major roads and topographic data. We also offer an aerial imagery subscription through Digital Globe. These maps are available for the PN-60w already and are being scheduled for our smartphone application. While we don’t currently have UK distribution I know that it is something we are looking into.

    Frank: Our development group is aware of the interest in an API. We have not published anything as of yet but the request has been noted. Thanks for the feedback on this issue.

    Mel Rothlisberger: We’re going to be in Salt Lake for the Outdoor Retailer Show the first week in August! If you’re in the area send me a note and you can check out the inReach. We are focusing our efforts on two-way communication right now so I don’t have any information on larger screens for handheld GPS devices. I can tell you that the maps we’re using with the Android are the same maps that we’re using with the PN so there’s no need to pay twice for them. I hope that answers your question. Thanks for the offer to test too. You should check out the DeLorme forum and fill out a beta testing application. While they’ve already begun selections for this beta, you can throw your hat in the ring for a future product.

    TobyGadd: The inReach has full standalone functionality for tracking, sending SOS and picking between three possible pre-defined messages that can be set up on the account website before heading into the woods. You can use the device with a PN-60w or an Android but they aren’t required.

    Mel Rothlisberger: The Android application from DeLorme will be able to use all of the maps that the PN can use. When the mapping application is available you could use it with your existing maps while you wait for your inReach to be delivered!

    John: I’m glad you’re giving the inReach and the PN-60w a look. I manage the design department so I’m hopeful that most users find the icon based interface and standard GPS features user friendly. We do have some advanced features that are best understood by walking through the Quick Start Guide. The device is capable of managing multiple waypoint and track files allowing you to load multiple trips and keep things organized. We also offer different ways to set up the device. As a Mac user I’d direct you to the pre-cut data discs for the PN that will allow you to copy your state or region’s maps onto the PN internal memory or an SD card. From there I’d direct you to to load any imagery, USGS quads, or nautical charts you’re interested in. After that you can use any number of freely available on-line map tools to generate your waypoints and tracks. Just save them as GPX files and you can copy them onto the internal or SD card memory and be on your way with a full configured device. While I do wish we had a Mac solution for people looking to use Topo North America, not having that application doesn’t mean that we don’t have anything to offer the Mac user. Once you get your GPS device configured you’ll be in the woods exploring away from your desktop machine anyway. Shorter answer: I’d recommend this to a beginner and advise them to walk through the Quick Start Guide, like you would for any new product. This will give you a great introduction to handheld GPS devices and the PN. Remember that DeLorme has a great 30 day money back guarantee so if you don’t find the device usable just return it. We want you to be happy with your purchase.

    Calvin: Good question! There are actually two different models, one with the 802.15.4 wireless chip for the Earthmate PN-60w, the other with Bluetooth for the Android. There was just too much RF in one device with the GPS, Iridium, and wireless antennas. It also helped us keep the cost down on both units.

    Brandon: The inReach will not store the GPS breadcrumbs. It can send your track information to a website for you to view later. You can also store your track with the PN-60w but not with the inReach by itself.

    Frank Paynter: Thanks for the feedback on soaring. I’m pretty sure I’ve heard talk of your inquiry inside the building so I’ll check there.

    Tom Serkowski: Thanks for the soaring feedback as well. We’re listening to these requests and hope that you’ll be pleased with the ability to see your altitude and use two-way communications while flying.

    Frank Paynter: The inReach is going to report the GPS elevation as reported by the device. We don’t have a digital elevation model on the unit to read from. I hope this is what you’re looking for. Let me know if there’s more to what is needed by the soaring community.

    John: Good questions about SAR services. When an emergency SOS is triggered the coordinates are sent along with the message to a search and rescue service that then reaches out to the user and their emergency contacts. If it is determined that a real emergency is in progress they will then contact local SAR to begin a search. If someone is missing without triggering an SOS message it would still be possible for friends and family to log into a shared map page and see the last reported location of the user to coordinate searching.

    Walter Rogers: Thanks for the feedback and recommendation about the World Soaring Championships. We’ll take a look.

    Rich: Glad you’re interested in the new product! We spent some time at the Boyscout Jamboree last year. I taught a Geocaching merit badge and we had a booth in the Boys Life area. It was amazing to see. I’m glad your sons are getting a chance to experience Philmont. Check out our forum to fill out a beta questionnaire. While the inReach testers have been picked you can always enter to test a future product. Unfortunately the device will not store track data internally. You could use the PN-60w to store your track data or work with the available tracking intervals and website interface. Your other suggestions are interesting, we’ll have to give some thought to automatically generated messages. I like your examples but we’d have to really nail down the corner cases to make sure there aren’t any accidental emergencies reported. Last one… yes, the system will support firmware updates via USB.

    Noel Wade: Thanks for the soaring feedback. We’ll be sure to check out the 2012 World Championships, given yours and other feedback about the sport I think it would be an important thing for us to keep in mind during our design efforts.

    Gregg: Thanks for your feedback on pricing. We’ll be announcing our final plans soon and you’ll be able to provide more direct comments. Thanks for giving the new product a look.

    Brad: Consider the ability to run with the Safety plan in the off season and a plan with more messaging options for the active season. We’ll share more details on the plans coming up soon.

    Thank you all for your great comments. I’ll work to keep the blog up to speed as we move through the development process.

    Chip Noble
    UI Design

  106. This new device does look very cool… though I’m not too thrilled about having two-way communications when I’m off trying to experience the wilderness (heh heh)🙂. But, seriously, I’d love to see this device compatible with both my iPhone and my PN-60w (all in one device, not two separate devices as is required with the present generation).

  107. Still not getting any fuzzy feeling that Delorme wants to support the ios (Appple) market. I hope they do as I have been a big Delorme supporter and purchaser over the years but I am not giving up the iPhone… Unless Delorme wants to pay off my contract with ATT…

  108. Chip:

    Looking at the comments by Frank Paynter and other glider pilots wrt altitude and elevation reporting, and your replies thereto, it’s not clear to me whether your intention is to report the **terrain elevation** (which would of course come from a digital terrain elevation database), or the GPS **altitude** (iow, a 3D fix, as opposed to SPOT’s 2D fix).

    Most glider pilots, by way of modern navigation systems, already have ground elevation data; these systems are used for displaying maps that include terrain, and for calculating glide through/around higher terrain.

    Needless to say, what we (glider pilots) need is the 3D GPS fix, with the altitude; don’t waste too much time on our behalf with terrain elevation as the altitude is a far greater priority.

    This looks like an exciting development; I tried very hard to get the folks at SPOT to add the third dimension but they failed to do so.

    Ted Wagner
    ASG-29 “2NO”

  109. As another glider and power pilot, I strongly second Ted’s and other’s comments. 3D GPS fix info is top priority for pilots of all kind (power, gliders, ballons, ultralights, …). The other major issue for us using SPOT is frequency of update. 10 min is great when you are hiking, but if you are flying and something happens, 10 min could potentially result is a very large search area for SAR. A more frequent update interval will be very valuable and could mean the difference between finding an injured pilot vs. a body.

    This is looking like a great option for a number of use cases. I can’t wait to get some hands on time.

  110. Yes! Yes! Yes! I just had to drop you a note to tell you that the inReach is exactly the product I have been waiting for. Once you get it to work with an iTouch, I’ll definitely buy it.

    While I have used the Spot before on a backpack trip (Wyoming Wind River Range), and it seemed to work fine, it was frustrating not to know whether your message got through (my unit only had the canned message also). On a later backpack trip, I rented an Iridium phone and thought that it worked really well. As we were camping in a steep valley (high up in Colorado’s Chicago Basin surrounded by a wall of three fourteeners), I appreciated Iridium’s LEO constellation because only a high sat pass worked reliably well for a phone call. I knew that I could count on an Iridium high sat pass sooner or later, while I don’t know whether a geostationary bird would have cleared the ridge. As it turned out, I had an iTouch sat tracking app (generally used for my ham radio hobby) that I used to time calls to use a high sat pass that I knew would clear the canyon walls. Also, as it turned out, I preferred the SMS messaging for a quick “I’m not dead dear” message home and reply to a data hogging and pricier phone call.

    The downsides of the Iridium phone handset, however, are its cost – over $1k for the handset and $30-$40 a month plus airtime for a service that I may use only several times per year – and its size (while the Immarsat Isatphone pro is about half the cost of Iridium, I do not want to mess with a fidgety geostationary bird). I wondered why no one ever thought to come up with a much smaller and more cost effective Iridium SMS-only device. Finally, I noticed that Iridium announced its 9602 SMS modem and a number of development agreements, so I regularly checked in at like a kid at Christmas to see what was brewing.

    I noticed that while several other companies came up with some 9602 products, none were completely satisfying. The Solara looked like it weighed a ton and cost a small fortune. The GeoPro did not have any reviews or write-ups anywhere. The NAL Shout Nano was as expensive as an Iridium handset. All of them had awkward trackwheels to compose messages. The Satcourrier was the most intriguing of the bunch. However, none of these struck me as ready for prime time nor were sold by a well known company. Finally, to my great delight, I saw a write-up of your product and it looks like exactly what I have been waiting for: an Iridium SMS device that is light weight, low priced, and most importantly, has a low price data plan. I have to confess that I thought that ACR would beat you to it. 🙂

    I have a few suggestions for this unit or for future versions. (1) I just want to add to the chorus of people requesting compatibility with an iTouch/iPhone system. I’m sure that dealing with Apple’s tight approval process is more difficult that writing open-source Android code. (2) You may consider an integrated unit with a Blackberry style key pad and small screen. Being able to carry only a single unit rather than two would cut down on complexity, weight, and possibility of failure in the field. (3) Add a satellite tracking app that shows the footprint of the Iridium constellation on your location. While a high pass may not be as critical for SMS as it is for an open voice circuit, there may be applications where one may want to be sure that the signal gets through without a lot of tries (and it is also cool to use it to spot Iridium flares). (4) Have a more advanced version that also incorporates a 406 MHz emergency beacon (although if your emergency protocol is just as robust that may not be necessary).

    Anyway, . . . congratulations and good luck on the introduction of your inReach. I expect it to be the killer app (assuming that it works, of course) for out-of-touch communications. While it won’t be ready for my September Maroon Bells backpack, hopefully it will be good to go for a February Grand Canyon adventure.

    Best regards,
    John Geracimos
    Alexandria, VA

  111. Another vote for altitude reporting from a paraglider pilot. Just checked in on a friend who is flying, and having no alt data tells me a lot less about whats happening for their flight.
    Also a plan that is cheap or off in winter is key for me. Don’t mind paying a bit when I’m using it but sometimes you know there are no adventures for awhile.
    2 way texts while out of cell coverage, hope to see it soon.

  112. Two weeks ago we lost a paragliding pilot in the Andes. He was spotted without life 6 days after his disappearance from a search plane at 4.700m altitude (about 15.000ft). His 2m radio was out of range and there was no cellphone coverage. Deeply touched, the Peruvian Paragliding Association considers not allowing flying cross country in the Andes without any spotting equipment.

    For paragliding here, most important is an emergency device to spot pilots in case of accidents. Lat and Long, as well as (GPS) altitude is the information we need in such a case. Other services, such as two way messaging is useful, but for example online tracking is secondary. Sadly enough, a plan that triggers local rescue services is of little use since there is no reliable standby service available, we must organize it by ourselves.

    Flights in the high mountains are not frequent and occur at only three to four occasions per year (usually one competition and two to three adventure events) with 15-25 pilots. For about half of the pilots, purchasing a device plus the annual fee represents a major expense many would forgo considering the little use of only few days per year.

    Therefore the Peruvian Paragliding Association (APVL) is considering purchasing about ten devices and rent them to the pilots on a daily basis. We therefore hope that DeLorme includes a purchasing plan that allows for emergency use on a rental basis.

    All the best for your inReach,


  113. +1 for iOS, love the iPhone.

    Sorry, not going to use an iClone phone, I mean android.

  114. With the upcoming fall hunting season, I would buy this product immediately if it had iPhone support. Without it, I will move on to the SPOT connect for this fall.

  115. The iPhone communicates with the SPOT connect via Bluetooth just fine

  116. Chip, its great to see a company use the internet as a way to both talk to and LISTEN to its customers. I am a spot owner and really want the 2way functionality that your device provides.

    Have you seen the site? It is a free site that lets people store there spot tracks, but allows some increased functionality. For example it lets me set a trip up that lasts for certain dates and only shows tracks received during that time. It also lets me set up privacy zones that blocks tracks when I’m in that zone. Take a look at the site its free. Anyway I’m hoping you have an API that spotwalla will be able to use to retrieve data from Delorme.

    Will the device work with Andriod tablets? I’m an iPhone user but might get a cheap tablet to work with this. Course Motorcycle season ends in November so I can wait till next spring for the iOS version😉

    Will you be having a spot trade in program?

  117. Would like to see a spot trade in program and support for the iPhone. I hope Delorme is not taking the Intuit approach to its customers who happen to like Apple IOS products.

  118. I am very excited about this device and its integration with the Android platform. But there is a potential failure point that I believe needs to be addressed. I recently purchased an Android phone using the latest (2.2) software. I can find no way to turn off all wireless connections except for bluetooth. You can turn wi-fi off separately, but no way to turn off the 3G connection and leave bluetooth on. The phone will extinguish its battery very quickly away from cell towers if the 3G connection is not turned off. As the inReach is designed to be used off the cellular grid and supposedly uses a bluetooth connection to communicate with the Android phone. I do not know if this is a limitation in the Android platform, but if possible, I would suggest that Delorme’s app include a bluetooth only switch to avoid inevitable complaints.

  119. Craig,

    Some Android phones can do what you’re asking natively. It involves activating Airplane Mode (which turns off all antennas) and then re-activating Bluetooth. If your phone cannot do this, there are some free utilities available that will do it. I won’t name names but there’s one I like that puts a nice widget on the launcher screen. Just tap to turn antennas on and off.

    We did look into this for our app but with a lot of native support and existing utilities that work well, we chose not to include it.

  120. what is the Date to start pre-orders if the release date is now 10/1/2011?

  121. We start pre-orders no sooner than 30 days before our shipping date. We’ll post here on the blog when we start taking orders. Thanks for the interest and question!

  122. I can confirm that the Casio G’Zone Commando does indeed operate as you state. Thanks for the info. I really would not have thought to do it this way. I mention the Commando as it is mil-spec and waterproof to 3 feet. It would seem like a perfect mate to the In Reach.

  123. I noticed in a post on the REI forum that stated re-chargeable batteries would not work in the device? Is this correct, and if so, what is the usage scenario for extended trips in the wilderness for powering the device?

  124. Hi,

    Looks like you are creating a great and very useful product. I’m a humanitarian telecommunications fellow working on and giving away a variety of open-source remote communications capabilities that might well be complementary to what you are doing, e.g., the ability to automatically transfer map data between phones in the field without reference to infrastructure. Would love to have a chat if you are interested.

  125. I am very excited about using this in the mission field to keep in contact with our missionaries who have no other form of communication. We go months at times without hearing from them. Please update me when it’s released!

  126. I am not sure if I am reading this correctly or not, but are you saying that I can use my PN 60W with the inReach and have all the functionality of an Android device? I do not own an Android but do have the iPhone and would much prefer that to having to type messages out using the PN 60W if that is how it works. I still do not get the fuzzy feeling that Delorme has committed to IOS yet. I hope you do as there is a large potential customer base out there.

  127. Chip,

    Just a quick question. I have posted in the Delorme forums about the Android App that is currently available on the Android Market.

    If you are a current Delorme customer should you be able to access the map servers with the app or is it currently just available for the Beta Testers.

    Thank You

  128. When will we be able to buy the inReach as a bundle package with the pn60w. We wouldn’t need the spot communicator right?

  129. I will gladly trade in my 3 Spots for 3 InReach’s as soon as you support the iPhone! Hurry, please!

  130. Hi Chip…referring to your response to Calvin:
    So we will have to choose which model of the inReach we want to get? Either for the PN-60w, or to be equipped for an android smartphone? If this is true, that we would have to choose which model we wanted, then that means I would have to buy two different inReach models to work with the PN-60w and one to work with the Android phone.
    My next question would be…If our android phones have the ability to connect via wi-fi, wouldn’t you still be able to connect your inReach that was equipped for the PN-60w ?

  131. Charging in the wilderness capabilities? What is the estimated battery life for AA and nIMH optoins? Is it possible to ever have solar charging options for each device that is standard – without having to carry more and more chords or adapters? Carrying extra batteries is getting heavy, expensive, and wasteful !

  132. I prefer to use lithium batteries for my potential life-saving devices. Rechargeables are not reliable for this type of service and the litihium batteries are extremely light to boot. You can always use your own AA rechargeable batteries and I separate charger. I, for one, do not want to see this device made bigger or less fuctional by trying to strap a solar panel to it. If you are that far off the grid for that length of time, you are likely already carrying a solar charger for other devices anyway. YMMV.

  133. +1 for iOS. A non starter until then. I would consider other Delorme products as well if there was Mac software to support them.

  134. Chip, still waiting to hear some confirmation that you are going to support iOS. Sprint may be selling the iPhone shortly which should further increase the number iOS users…..

  135. Yet another PN60 & iphone/iOS user. I know you have limited development resources, but it will be a critical mistake to not develop on iOS application. There are simply way too many users of that platform out there and way too much marketshare at stake.

  136. Also just to clarify my above post… I do not feel like you need to spend a lot of development resources on supporting OSX as a platform. Sure, what it help extend marketshare… absolutely, but it really is a drop in the bucket compared to the Windows platform. iOS though is a VERY different story. Lots of cross polination going on there… lots and lots of folks with iOS devices like iPhones and iPads who are primarily PC users.

    In addition, very different development tools used. Developing for iOS will definitely extend marketshare in a very substantial way. Also, developing for Windows Phone 7 should be a snap since you are already developing for Windows and most likely utilizing Visual Studio in some flavor. Visual Studio 2010 makes mobile platform development a real breeze.

    I manage a number of developers and systems engineers at work and know all about the challenges of working towards targeting multiple mobile platforms. Ultimately at the end of the day, it is your customer base that makes this decision for you.

  137. Another vote for the iOS version. I have been a Garmin user for 15+ years both personally and professionally (SAR/LE). This device right here is making me take a serious look at Delorme, but not until it is available for iPhone/iPad use.

  138. Chip,

    Count me in with IOS support. I also like the idea of Blackberry support for disaster recovery communication.

  139. The price for the device seems OK. But, anyone heard any service pricing details? The price of Sat Phones and service options are getting really cheap. I was looking at a ISatPhone Pro but was then offered a new Globalstar phone for $250 and $20 a month unlimited text/data/voice with a one year contract. If the InReach service is $5 a month with unlimited messaging. Then I would probably go with it. Anything over $10 a month and a Satellite Phone starts looking more attractive as a function of total usability.

    Anyone heard anything on service pricing?

  140. Will it send altitude in the tracking stream, or will it assume you are on the ground and only send elevation at that point on the ground? Will it offer iPhone support as well?

  141. Using Globalstar prices is really not a fair comparison at this point. Globalstar has had really serious problems with their satellite constellation that they are just now starting to resolve. The $20 per month unlimited is not really unlimited because you will only have sporadic service maybe three to four hours total per day. Thus, although still a good deal and convenient, Globalstar is really not an option for emergency communication until they fix these problems.

  142. Well, I might gave been interested if you had supported iPhone.

  143. I feel like I’m stuck in some cyber-purgatory with the mac guy and the pc guy (from the TV commercial) constantly bickering, but this time the pc guy stayed home, but the mac guy just keeps bickering to the wall. Delorme has made its decision and I and many other Android users will welcome this product with open arms. I really don’t think clogging this blog with 10,000 I’m an Apple guy and I’m miffed that I won’t get this product first is going to change a corporate decision at Delorme that has already been made.

  144. We appreciate everyone’s opinion and have encouraged people to post their support for any platform or any feature they’d like to see. We ask that everyone try to speak positively towards their own preferences and ideas rather than negatively towards someone else’s.

    For the iOS, Windows Phone 7, or other platform/feature supporters who are interested in the inReach, please subscribe to the blog or our twitter feed (@DeLormeGPS). If we have news, you’ll hear it there first.

  145. Criag: The dealer did tell me that service was impaired, and that full time phone/SMS/data service would not be available until December or January. So they were forthright in their representation. Likewise, it appears that the service is currently available about 13 hours a day, using the service calculator on their web site, versus your three to four hour a day guess. So you are 100% correct in your statements on full-time service availability, which may be 3 or 4 months away from “unlimited” according to the local dealer. So I think that brings us back around to “service pricing” on the InReach. I am trying to do a “fair comparison” since it may be near the same time period when the InReach becomes available. In other words, right now, the phone service is 12 hours a day, on a commercial basis, and InReach’s is zero.

    So it all comes down to the service pricing for me? Unless, I have missed it all I have seen is the $249 product pricing. But, haven’t seen anything on service pricing, except for the $9.95 a month “safety plan”, with no explanation how many messages are included. So I will ask again. Anyone heard anything on detailed service pricing?


  146. My Globalstar service estimate was not a guess. I have been a Globalstar customer since 2003 and have stayed with them during their constellation issues. If you go to their site and use the availability tool, you will notice that it asks for your location. That is because they are moving their birds around to attempt meet demand. I really doubt that anyone is getting 12 hours of service per day at this point, but I can tell you that down in South Florida, I checked my equipment and coverage just before Irene past us by and 4 hours was being generous. Coverage should be improving very soon (see below). The point is that coverage times differ by location. I would also ask if the data/SMS service is going to be available via the older and much less expensive GSP-1600 handset. The newer GSP-1700 will probably set you back $800 which makes InReach’s pricing very competitive for what you get. Also ask them how long these preferred rate service plans are going to be available. Globalstar put up two or three birds in July and they are planning another two or three in October. As soon as their constellation is back up to snuff, I will bet you dollars against donuts that the nice rate plans will disappear. My rates were much higher before the constellation issues. Good luck with your decision.

  147. I’m sorry for not including this point earlier, but I wanted to research the issue before I made the assertion. I have received text (SMS) messages on my Globalstar GSP-1600, but I have never sent one. Upon referring to the user manual, there does not appear to be any ability to send a text message from this phone. I do not know if the GSP-1700 has this capability. But it would appear that the InReach has yet another leg up.

  148. OK! I really don’t know that much about all the technical stuff.

    Not sure which model phone it was, but the dealer offered to let me use next week for a day. 10 minutes free calling and unlimited texting..

    As far as the phone goes, it was Gold in color, and smaller than I expected for a satellite phone, you probably know the model numbers, etc. The dealer sent it a Text Msg. from his cell phone. He put the satellite phone outside on a table. He looked up on the web site, and we waited about 4 minutes to send the message. Went right thru. The kid was like Mr. Techie type, I think it was his Dad’s shop. I then called his cell phone from the Quallcom phone. In hind sight, I think it sounded pretty good, considering that the satellites are in their optimum locations. I was expecting walkie-talkie with static.

    In all fairness, he did say the phone was “re-furbished” by the manufacture, but still carried a full warranty at $250.

    I have an Android phone (G2X) and want to see the InReach, will you have a dealer that can show how it works? I’m in Oregon? However, ultimately service pricing for texting” is going to be one of the main factors in my decision.

    I take it that since there has been no response, that service pricing is still unknown for the InReach? Anyone know when pricing will become available?

    Thank you for your time. It is appreciated.

  149. Sounds like the GSP-1700. Ask him to send a message FROM the GSP-1700 to any cell phone. I’ll bet it can’t do that.

    There is some information down near the bottom of this blog ( ) concerning the pricing plans you were asking about. I am not associated with Delorme so I cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information contained there.

  150. One thing I would like, on both the InReach and DeLorme GPS, is the ability to charge batteries on the go, by keeping units plugged into 12 volt outlets on my UTV Rhino. This would insure they stay fully charged at all times. One less thing to worry about while on long rides.Plus a very easy daytime readable charge indicator icon.

  151. The original SPOT tracker device (popularly called SPOT1) had excellent battery life, to the point where with 1-2days/week usage from March to September, I normally only had to replace the AA alkalilnes once or twice per year.

    If the InReach has comparable battery life, then constant recharging should not be an issue – just take along a spare set of batteries and you’ll be all set

  152. Obviously, less that 30 days from the originally announced release date, the power decision has already been made. As long as the InReach is marketed primarily as an emergency locator beacon, I believe you will see primary (non-rechargeable) lithium batteries as the power source. This is because of their light weight, long shelf life, and long power life which would be a priority in the emergency mode. I suspect it will be able to use NiMH which you will need to charge yourself, but I would not recommend using anything other than the low self-discharge version to avoid nasty surprises. Of course, all this is supposition on my part, but other manufacturers have had good experience with the lithium primaries, so Delorme will likely build on that experience.

  153. This sounds superb! Very keen on a “docking station” idea / concept so it can be left in a vehicle, and charged on the go, ready to grab and go if you have to hike out.

  154. Cool but…
    Seems kinda lame that I have to carry multiple devices (that I am not using backcountry) to text messeges. I am not going out to buy a new GPS, or smart, I, android,pad or other junk.
    Why cant you just make it a stand-alone Sat-texting device?

  155. Bill, There’s a lot of information here, but I captured this from the post above:

    “he inReach can be used by itself, with the DeLorme Earthmate PN-60w GPS, or with smartphones running the Android OS!”

    Yes, InReach is expected to stand-alone! NEAT, NEAT!

  156. Yes, the inReach can be used by itself but it will send one of three messages you set up ahead of time. It doesn’t have the freeform text messages the PN-60w or Androids provide. Also, when paired with one of the handhelds, you get two-way texting.

  157. True, but then if we could have anything we wanted, then I want a camera (HD), Iridium phone, full GPS capabilities, etc. … oh … and low cost!

    Yeah, cost is likely the reason for no display – or – maybe DeLorme is wanting you and I to upgrade to the next version w./ display?

    They are about to offer something no else offers “and I want it, now”

  158. So I see we can now pre-order one at the DeLorme website. There are two options, one for Android and the other for PN-60w. Since I have neither, but am anticipating iPhone iOS support, which unit do I buy?

    Actually, why 2 versions? Isn’t it using a Bluetooth connections? Or is it just a different software / firmware CD depending on the paired device?


  159. This was mentioned earlier in this thread:

    “There are actually two different models, one with the 802.15.4 wireless chip for the Earthmate PN-60w, the other with Bluetooth for the Android. There was just too much RF in one device with the GPS, Iridium, and wireless antennas. It also helped us keep the cost down on both units.”

    So I guess for future iPhone usage you would need the bluetooth/android version.

  160. I would be very careful about making assumptions about iOS. My understanding is that the iOS bluetooth is somehow different. For example, PLX makes an ODB II connector. The Android version uses bluetooth, but the iOS version uses wifi. Delorme can provide a better answer, obviously, but I certainly wouldn’t jump the gun.

  161. Checking out the Subscription Plans. “InReach Saftey vs. SPOT” What your $10 will get you.

    $10 a month with InReach every tracking point costs 25¢. (unlimited with SPOT). SPOT also includes unlimited “preloaded” outgoing messages for the $10 per month. It appears that InReach considers pre-loaded messages as Text Messages and are charged at $1.50 Text Message Rate, after the first 10 which are included in the base price.

    Outgoing Free form Text messages costs 50¢ flat “al la carte” with SPOT (10¢ per message in a bundle of 500 good for one year), and $1.50 per message with InReach, (10 Messages Included with InReach good for one month) InReach considers “pre-loaded” messages as a Text Message while SPOT for $10 provides unlimited “preloaded messages” and tracking points.

    Also SPOT pre-loaded messages include tracking points. So it sounds like Tracking points and Text Messages (pre-loaded/Free form) are considered separate messages and billed separately on the InReach.

    So after the initial 10 messages have been exhausted. To send a Pre-loaded message and a tracking point on InReach, it costs $1.75. This same functionality would be “unlimited” for the $10 per month SPOT subscription. Free-Form Text Message with a Tracking point would cost 50¢ “al la carte” on SPOT,vs $1.75 on InReach. However, the InReach text message can be about 5 times bigger than the SPOT message. The SPOT text message includes the tracking data. Long/Lat, etc. Which eats away at the free-form message length.

    Incoming Text Messages $1.50 per message with InReach, NOT AVAILABLE with SPOT. (Big Plus for InReach).

    At $1.50 per message, I am not sure how many friends I want texting me though.

    It doesn’t appear that the InReach Unused Text message allowance “rolls over” to the next months billing cycle?

    Sounds like using a combination of both products might provide the best financial result. Also gives you a backup SOS device in case batteries in one goes flat.

    At the higher rate plans, you might as well get a Satellite Phone. IMO.

  162. Wow! Super informative post. Thank you! I am also a SPOT owner deciding what to do when the InReach hits the market. I do not want to carry two separate devices, but you sure make a good case for it from a cost-benefit point of view. It seems a bit strange that Delorme decided to price the service in such a way that it would not pull away a greater number of SPOT users. I would think that current SPOT owners would be their target market, but the service pricing structure will definitely not make it an easy decision to switch. Add the equipment price and SPOT owners may not be tempted.

  163. On a separate issue, I’m still worried about the battery life on the tethered Android phone. I know the InReach can operate independently to some extent, but I do not know details. Would it be possible to leave the InReach device on and NOT connected to the Android phone and still receive incoming text messages.

    In other words, will the InReach notify you of incoming messages via a light or audible notification when not connected to the phone? Presumably, then you could connect the phone and read the message and reply if desired. This would require the InReach to have some level of internal memory storage for incoming messages.

    It would be very nice if it would operate this way.

  164. Yes, like a message waiting light or something like that?

    BTW, you were correct about the Globalstar phone NOT SENDING text messages, only receiving them as per an earlier conversation between us on this blog.

    I picked up the Globalstar phone anyway for $250 and pay $20 a month unlimited access (voice/text), (for the first year at least), and use it to receive text messages and use the Connect to send text messages. My friends can send all the text messages they want and it doesn’t rack up a big bill. The call quality is quite remarkable. I can’t even tell it is a satellite phone. Even compared to Iridium phones I have used in the past. Still dead zones, but I find that it is available for at least 50% of the time.

    So that combo costs me $30 per month, and I have a full satellite phone with unlimited incoming texts and SPOT Connect (IPhone) for outgoing. Still seems like something like an Iridium/Globalstar phone with unlimited 2-way text/voice for $30 a month would be a big seller. Given that I can tether some SLOW data off of the Globalstar Phone is another plus I have not tried yet.

  165. A message waiting light is exactly what I was thinking about. I’m glad you like your Globalstar phone. Yes, the call quality when the birds are in range is quite good. I’m still not happy with the coverage yet, but it is supposedly getting better by the end of the year. With your text messaging via Globalstar, note that the messages must be sent either through Globalstar’s web portal or via email. SMS via a cell phone is not available. Also you are limited to 35 characters per text. Finally, the GSP-1600 will not receive texts without an active satellite connection (not surprising), but it will not connect without the antenna rotated to the deployed mode. It is cumbersome to carry around this way. As most of my off the grid work is spent near a vehicle, I elected to get the car mount bag (GPDK-1410). When the government dropped Globalstar a couple of years ago, they dumped a boatload of these on surplus sources. They show up quite often on Ebay at great prices. They work very well, again, when you have a bird overhead..

  166. Good point about EBAY. I browsed the SPOT “completed items” on EBAY and almost everything sold is in the “under $50 range” for the equipment. I know I paid $150 for my SPOT Connect paired to my Iphone. But, if that price point on EBAY is any indication of the overall marketplace. Then it appears many are quite cost aware, shall I say, by electing for the sub $50 market for equipment. I guess time will tell what the overall market for the InReach will be, given the subscription/equipment pricing as you pointed out.

  167. I fly a sailplane (glider) and currently use SPOT as well as APRS to track my position over southwestern US deserts and mountains. A typical flight will be 300 – 600 miles with no particular plan other than Tomas far as possible. If I were to crash, the onboard ELT will likely fail, so bread crumbs are important. APRS is unreliable at low altitude, but does provide altitude and speed, while SPOT only provides position.
    So for me, the $500 initial cost followed by $300/yr is reasonable for the worst case scenario. And the track information will give my wife and friends a much better idea of my current status

  168. Whereas I’m in a plane or vehicle or whatever, the external power supply is a must as 7 days of tracking is not long enough.
    If the external power supply can recharge batteries at the same time that would be great, but not a must.

    – >Basically, I’m expecting the InReach to function a bit like a walkie-talkie: when you put it in its cradlle, it works on external power and charge batteries. When you take it out of its craddle, it switch automatically to external power.
    If you could build something like this I think you would have a killer product.

    I’m an apple user, but with the craddle/external power thing I would buy the inreach as standalone device in an heartbeat,

  169. I have to respectfully disagree with the whole let’s charge it all the time / cradle crowd and agree with Delorme’s power selection. Rechargeable batteries and their chemistry simply are not designed for this mission critical device. Most people are going to leave this thing in their pack and forget about it until they need it. Then they are going to find that the standard nickle metal hydride battery pack has self-discharged and the device is useless. A proprietary charger is also one more thing to lose that also makes the device useless. Lithium ion primaries are the way to go. If you want to use your own rechargeables and end up like the Washington state trooper who found his SPOT died within a few short hours after he activated it during his hour of need, that is your choice.

  170. I found this site that has a photo of the inside of the InReach. They seem to think that there is a difference in the orientation of the Satellite and the GPS antennas and it may have some bearing on stand-alone performance? When you are using a Android Phone, I assume the GPS data comes from the GPS on the phone, and off the InReach when it is in Stand Alone operation? Does that sound right?

  171. I actually hope that the InReach uses its own GPS chip all the time and does not depend on the GPS chip in the Android phone. For one, this is one more failure point for the device to switch back and forth between GPS chips. Secondly,, Delorme has no control over the quality of the GPS chip in the Andriod phone which means that it should rely upon its own. And third, I would prefer to turn the GPS chip on the Anroid phone off in order to preserve the phone’s battery life. Which, raises a forth issue, what it the user turns off the GPS chip on the Andriod phone? Will the InReach default back to its own internal chip?

    I would not place much credence in the article that asserted that the GPS chip on the inReach is somehow handicapped by not pointing straight up. The new GPS chips are extremely sensitive, most working well inside cars, and one of my handlheld devices has no problem establishing a lock indoors.

  172. The inReach uses a Patch antenna (look it up in wikipedia). These are commonly used in portable equipment. It isn’t particularly sensitive to its orientation and should work well. I can’t find the quote, but I seem to remember that Chip mentioned that when used together with a phone, that it would use the inTouch GPS position.

  173. It would be interesting if we could get some confirmation on how this will work. If the InReach used it’s internal GPS chip for Android Phones/Maps. Then I tend to think the InReach would discharge at a more rapid rate as the GPS portion would be active all the time to send tracking data via Bluetooth to the phone. You opine that you would prefer turning off the GPS in the phone to save power, but then the InReach would lose power faster. Better for your phone to lose power than your SOS device.

  174. Not really. If we use the battery life of the competing SPOT device using lithium ion batteries as a guide, the battery life of the InReach would be many times that of an Android phone. Thus, the increased battery life of not using the GPS chip would not be significant. Regardless, you would always be carrying an extra set of lithium batteries with you (right?) so that your tracking usage would not create an issue with your emergency usage.

  175. When it comes to inReach power, sending messages is by far the biggest power drain. Using the inReach to get location information when sending a message or a tracking point once every ten minutes or less isn’t a big deal.

    When the Android is being used to type messages or control the tracking, the Android GPS is used. For anyone looking to save Android power, use the inReach autonomously for tracking and just fire up the Android occasionally for messages. The PN-60w has a big advantage here, as it can run a long time actively tracking and also takes AA batteries. One of those external power supplies (and a good case) would be a good investment for anyone looking for extended outdoor use from an Android.

    Mike McKenney
    Team DeLorme

  176. Is there a message waiting light for the “autonomous mode”?


  177. So just to be clear. Will the InReach, or the Iridium system, cache incoming messages until the Bluetooth is connected and then ultimately delivered to the Android phone? I occasionally receive SPAM SMS messages which I assume I would not have to pay for, is there a way to only allow SMS messages from certain numbers/people to be forwarded to the InReach? Can you approve which messages you will receive and those that you don’t want to receive and be billed for? If we dispute the message charge, who do we contact? Delorme or Iridium?

    At $1.50 a message, I will want to keep my allowed incoming list pretty short. SPOT at 10¢ a message is hardly worth a telephone call to debate. But, at $1.50 a message on InReach. That is worth a phone call to debate.

  178. Another question. I obviously don’t want SMS delivered to my InReach, which I would be billed for, when my Android phone is on terrestrial networks. How does transferring incoming SMS from Terrestrial to Satellite work? If this is something I have to access a web site to change? Then I am concerned that I will be hiking at a trailhead that has terrestrial coverage, and then find I have passed off the terrestrial network, and realize a mile or so later that I am off the terrestrial grid, but no way to transfer SMS to satellite due to being off the grid without hiking back to the point of terrestrial coverage? Even if I have to forward the SMS from my Android phone, I have to have terrestrial coverage to set this up. Never thought about these things since I assumed that the message pricing would be similar to SPOT i.e. bundled with only an annual expiration on a basket of messages at around 10¢ ea., so no one would really care about some stray SMS messages? This seems like this could turn into a real customer service nightmare? Perhaps Iridium is used to Government/Corporate users who won’t balk at $30 worth of stray message charges, but the consumer market like InReach probably would.

  179. Richard,

    The SMS capabilities don’t operate using your cell phone number. So anyone messages you normally receive wouldn’t just transfer to come through the inReach. If you have ever used a service like twitter on your phone, you’ve seen one of these numbers. Or one of the ‘Text “Donate” to 49294’ charitable donation options. They use these other numbers.

    With the inReach, when you send a message to someone’s phone, they’ll receive it from one of the numbers and can simply reply to send you a message. You’ll still want to let anyone you share this with know that it costs you messages/money when they do reply.

    Mike McKenney
    Team DeLorme

  180. Richard,

    I replied to your later question first as the admin panel puts newer comments on the top.

    Anyway, like I said in my other reply, you will not receive spam messages as it isn’t tied to your phone. However, definitely let your friends and family know not to go overboard with messages unless necessary.

    As far as who to contact, that will be DeLorme. The web site that handles the billing and accounts that you will log into will have the complete information.

    Mike McKenney
    Team DeLorme

  181. Craig,

    I just wanted to let you know that I haven’t ignored this question. There’s still some work being done in this area and I want to have the full details before I reply. When I do, I’ll let you know.

    Mike McKenney
    Team DeLorme

  182. What about the first part of the question concerning message caching while not connected to the Android phone?

  183. Craig,

    Questions around caching and indicators for autonomous mode are still not fully answered. We’re making some changes in this area and I don’t want to say one thing to have to retract it later. I’ll post another comment when I know for sure. Thanks.

    Mike McKenney
    Team DeLorme

  184. Thank you. I hope that some level of caching is available. Still more concerned with the battery life of the Android phone than I am the InReach. It should have wonderful battery life with the lithium primaries.

  185. Some caching for sure. We’ve got that, it’s how much and other specific details that are coming. Android battery life is certainly much worse than the inReach and we’re trying to develop ways to make it last for people on multi-day trips away from a recharge.

    Mike McKenney
    Team DeLorme

  186. Well, I do have the inReach ordered. So that part is over with. I’ve been going back and forth with this since word about the inReach leaked out. From that time till now, I never had a doubt in my mind I would not buy it.
    I have an ATV Yamaha Rhino and ride the trails in Arizona and Utah. To be truthful there are not to many areas my cell phone will not work right now. So it really comes down to a couple of reasons I bought the inReach.
    Number one, It will be treated like any other form of insurance I have. You hope you do not have to use it except for an emergency. It should give me & my family a little more peace of mind when I’m out there. My kids will love to know I can be reached at any time. Just not to send a text every minute. I’m also sure I will not figure that out for myself until I’m almost broke sending a text to all I know to brag about where the text is coming from.
    Number two. I think the PN/60 is beyond a doubt the best GPS on the market. The only thing I dislike is the small screen. But, you can’t have a small pocket device with a 32 inch LED screen. OK? Now, along comes the inReach. I read all the information about the inReach. Then bought a Samsung Droid Charge cell phone, which has a good sized screen. Now, I can mount the Charge on the dash of my Rhino, download the maps and sync. it with the inReach and wala, I’m in business. I can check where I’m going without stopping to look at a small screen plus use the Droid Charge as a keyboard to text with. If my kids, friends and relatives try to text me to much, no problem, I just cut the birthday and Christmas presents down in proportion to their text messages. If they don’t learn , so be it. I might be the only happy one in the whole bunch? Right?, right.

  187. Roger that, Mel. I’ll be using mine next year up on the Arizona Strip, somewhere south of the Utah line. east of Kanab Creek and north of the Grand Canyon….no cell in there whatsoever.

  188. Hey Stu, Sounds great. I’m really anxious to my inReach . I just joined the Riding Arizona club. Get in touch. I think a lot of them will be amazed at the DeLorme GPS and inReach also.

  189. I just ordered one of these for use here in Afghanistan. Any word on a ship date? Also, where do i go to set up my plan?

  190. I wish there were some plans in between the Safety Plan and the Recreation Plan, with unlimited OK messages like a spot and unlimited tracking. I pay $150 year or $12.50 / month for a spot that includes (unlimited SOS, unlimited OK, unlimited tracking) in comparison to Delome’s plans as quoted below:

    Monthly Service Plans
    Safety Plan – Unlimited SOS, 10 Messages per month, No Tracking, $9.95 per Month.
    Overage – $1.50 per message and $0.25 per Track.
    Recreation Plan – Unlimited SOS, 40 Messages per month, Unlimited Tracking, $24.95 per Month.
    Overage – $0.50 per message.
    Expedition Plan – Unlimited SOS, 120 Messages per month, Unlimited Tracking, $49.95 per Month.
    Overage – $0.25 per message.
    There is a one-time $11.95 activation charge.

    Delorme would be of interest to me at say $14.95 / month with unlimited SOS, 10 messages a month (not including 5 characters or less “I am OK”), unlimited tracking, each additional message is $0.25 and no activation fee

    If this plan was in place I would sell my satellite phone and spot amd go with Delorme.

  191. Why dont Delorme customer support ever respond to a support request? What are they doing all day if not “Customer Support”? I have left 3 messages over the past month and they have not had the decency to respond once. Not good enough guys!

  192. I checked with Customer Service and they only have a record of your email from yesterday to which they replied today. If you left phone messages on another line here and they weren’t forwarded to the proper people, I apologize.

    I hope the email support has resolved your issue.

    Mike McKenney
    Team DeLorme

  193. Hi,

    I came across the website and am very impressed with this device. However, we had very bad Iridium signal here in Malaysia. Is there any other options or suggestion?


  194. Genevieve,

    I see from your other comment that you used a satellite phone previously. The inReach is much less susceptible to changing positions of the satellites which may be the problem with the phone. The inReach knows when a text message didn’t make it through and will send when it can. Equatorial regions have longer times between satellite fly-overs than more northern (or southern) areas but the inReach should still be able to send within several minutes. Here at DeLorme headquarters, it’s consistently under one minute.

    I hope that helps. Let me know if you have any other questions.

    Mike McKenney
    Team DeLorme

  195. We are considering the inReach as the telemetry link for an oceanographic data logger application. Our datalogger will read sensor data (e.g. ocean telemetry or salinity), which we’d like to transfer to the inReach via Bluetooth. Could DeLorme publish the bluetooth protocol details?


  196. I’ll buy one right away as soon as iOS/iPhone is supported. Thanks for innovating a great idea.

  197. I’m another +1 for Iphone support. If you need any testers, i’m your man🙂

  198. I’ll be buying one as well the minute you have iPhone support.

  199. I would buy this if it had iphone/ipad support. Currently I have an iridium sat phone, for the “just in case” and I would drop it in a second if this product worked with my iphone.

  200. No App for that?

    I know between 20 and 30 people who would buy this if it worked with an iPhone/iPad.

    Lets get it together DeLorme.

    I hear there are politics with Iridium and Motorola because Motorola makes Android. I guess that is the reason for DeLorme’s dropping the ball on this.

    Your really hurting yourself, DeLorme. I thought most of the Android people left them for iPhone.

    Don’t shoot yourself in the foot here.

    Make an iPhone App.

  201. Thanks for creating a solid product that uses the Iridium network. I’ll add my vote for an iPhone app.

  202. Pricing seems to be high… Really need to allow tracking plots included with the $9.95 a month plan. $24.95 is way too high, not sure if you can change plans other than once per year, slightly better if I could do 4 months at $24.95 and 8 at $9.95, but still seems way to high for me.

    And the iPhone app is critical, will not change my phone to use this device, and it seems the phone is important link. I could by another GPS I guess, but my GPS works great, and that adds to the overall cost. No I am not particular Apple fan at all, just that the phone is solid, and without the app, no purchase of the device for me

  203. + 1 for iPhone. Don’t need a new GPS and don’t want an Android since I (along with millions of other potential customers) already have an iPhone.

  204. Okay, here’s a question for you Delorme: today is Cyber Monday and there’s an extension of a 20% off sale over at EMS. If I go ahead and buy an inReach now, and you do end up releasing iPhone capability, will it be a simple/free firmware/software update? Or would the inReach unit I purchase be “out of reach?” I’m on the fence about whether to get an android phone, but don’t want to miss a great sale on this device.

  205. traildawg: Apple’s Bluetooth implementation requires DeLorme to incorporate a special “Apple Authentication” chip in the inReach. If the Android model doesn’t have that chip, my reading of the matter is that it will never be compatible with iOS.

    So Chip: does it it have “The Chip”?

  206. Tack on another +1 for ios compatibility. I spend a lot of time with outdoors and mountaineering clubs as well as search&rescue folks. iPhones are very popular with members of all these groups (androids are not common at all in Canada, nearly everyone I know uses iPhone). I can think of a dozen friends off the top of my head that would ditch their current sat/PLB/spot devices in favour of this product if it worked with iPhone.

  207. Flexibility with batteries and what sounds like a very well thought out design, I’m impressed! Now just make it iOS compatible and you’ll sell them quicker than you can build them🙂

  208. Until this is IOS compatible I will not being purchasing one of these. Briartek just came out with their two-way text Cerberus unit that also uses the Iridium network and they developed it for the iPhone first.

  209. I think its pretty bad form to hawk a competitor’s product on Delorme’s blog, but since you brought it up, the other product is about twice as expensive for the unit only as the InReach and three times as expensive on the monthly charge. Once you are in that price range, you might was well buy a satellite phone. But that seems to be the standard pricing model for all i-this and i-that products. Finally, according to their website, the product is only available for pre-order, so who knows when you will ever see it.

  210. Briartek has no shipping product with iPhone connectivity, neither has Yellowbrick, the other announced player. It’s easy to promise, much harder to deliver Bluetooth connectivity for iOS (iPhone etc)

  211. I’m not hawing anyone’s product. Just pointing out a competitor that went with iPhone first. I was offered a test unit from Briartek and turned it down as I did like the tracking feature being sent as text that had to be paid for or went against your subscrption allotment. Seems most everyone went with iOS first except Delorme. I completely understand the issue with Apple’s controls, but it seems that an awful lot of folks that enjoy activities where an inReach is needed have iOS devices.

    I had not heard of Yellow brick and will check them out.

  212. Wow, I cannot type. “I did not like the tracking feature”

  213. Chris,
    I don’t want to be seen as taking any particular side here (I specifically follow Satellite Emergency Devices for But when I talked to Yellowbrick last week, they were getting ready to ship an android version first. Like a few others, they talk the iOS talk, but are not actually shipping yet. Their iPhone app is not a companion to their YB3 tracker, it is a Yacht Race “player”.

  214. Perhaps they recently updated the site. Tech specs say it is Apple approved. And I do not mean the Yacht Race player- lol. 😉.

    Out of respect to DeLorme, I won’t link to it here.

  215. Well, thank you for the information. I am an Android user and took advantage of the super deal. I appreciate it.

  216. I saw an Inreach yesterday. It was sitting beside a Spot Connect in an REI store.

    I was impressed with the build quality of the Inreach, but not so much on the Connect.

    I would have bought the Inreach on the spot (pun unintended) if it supported iOS (my phone of choice).

    Several of my tech-savvy, outdoor adventure type friends likely would purchase one, too (they are all iPhone types).

    For what it’s worth, I don’t even know anyone with an Android OS phone / tablet / etc. The iPhone / iPad market clearly dominates over Android in the region I live in (Vancouver, Canada).

    So, please add mine to the growing list of iOS compatibility requests.

  217. How do you charge the Li-Io AA batteries of the inReach? Can any brand Li-Io AA batteries be used? Your choice of Android OS is a wise one as Android is open (modifiable) and not closed as the propietary iOS. Moreover, Android is a much better OS than the iOS. Android is the future of mobile devices!🙂

  218. Lithium Ion batteries such as those that come with the InReach (Eveready Ultimate Lithium AA) batteries are NOT rechargeable. What you give up in the ability to recharge is gained by very light weight, extremely long shelf life, and long power life.

  219. +2 for iPhone support. Allow me to explain: We fly mission aircraft in the jungle of Papua New Guinea. The mountains mix with tropical atmosphere to give us horrible flying weather. And, our home base often clouds up quickly. The current solution is someone standing around by the HF radio (and timing up a radio sked time with the aircraft’s HF radio). And…the HF base is expensive and very hard to move from one location to another.
    We are looking for a better solution than 2 sat phones, which are quite pricey. There is no cellphone coverage in our area, and the ability of sending/receiving a text message that says “The weather is good-go ahead and fly this way” or “Stay away–the clouds have set in” would be a life saver.
    BUT we will not go Android for this. We use our iPhones for too many other things.

  220. Please add my family and company to the list for IOS support. collectively we would buy over 20 units once IOS support is available. I did buy an inreach already to keep me in touch on the boat, but it required an additional purchase of an android device. While I have no real issues with android based devices, it would be great not having to carry an extra device just to use the the inreach. Once IOS support is available I will add the inreach units to all our employees travel kits that are frequently out of cell phone range.



  221. While IOS may be the first to release simple apps and games (gimicky stuff) it is NOT realistic to develop real apps for IOS fisrt. IOS has very little support for externally connected devices (bluetooth connected devices like keyboards or a Delorme inReach) Android is far easier and open to integrating 3rd party hardware. It’s Apples closed developemnet practice that tries to prevent 3rd party hardware integration and their need to control and approve every peice of software released for them that makes it a hard (costly and timely) platform to develope support for when you are trying to interface with external hardware.

    Delorme isn’t anti Apple apple is more anti 3rd party hardware support so the delay in IOS support is caused by Apple not Delorme. Blame apple for the lack of immediate IOS support.

    I’m sure once Delorme developers find a way to overcome IOS lack of support for 3rd party hardware they will release a version for IOS.

  222. How does the inReach function with an Android wifi based device (not an Android-based phone) such as the Samsung Galaxy S Wifi 4.0 or 5.0? These device have blue tooth so they will be able will pair with inReach, but am I understanding correctly that because the Android device is tethered to the inReach it will then (along when used with downloaded app from Android app store) be able to function as regular GPS? According to Samsung product page their Galaxy wifi devices have GPS, but reading their user forums they are usable for GPS as long as they are connected to a network via wifi. Users on some Samsung forums complain that ‘built-in’ GPS does not work unconnected to wifi. However, most folks are not pairing with an inReach. So, to summarize will I be able to leave bread crumbs, navigate, etc, on a wifi-based Android device used in conjunction with inReach, inReach app, and inReach data plan? Is this is doable, what would be advantage in buying inReach in conjunction with PN-60 instead? I ask as know in the iphone universe the functionality of the ipod Touch (wifi) vs iphone is such, that iphone users can use a GPS app, whileTouch users cannot, as the Touch relies on different functionality that prevents GPS use. Finally, planning trip to South America . Reading through the maps/functionality at top of this page, is it still correct that Android in Reach only has N America maps? Thank you, John

  223. Just to add a timeframe for my need of an iPhone version of inReach, I’m doing an offroad motorcycle rally in July and we’re required to have satellite tracking on our bikes. Most of the course is outside network range. The organisers have recommended Spot trackers in the past, but my mate and I would each like to take an inReach instead. It would be great if there was an iPhone version by then.

  224. How ’bout if we don’t blame Delorme OR Apple. Apple creates hurdles and hoops for developers to jump through, yes, mostly to assure its users have a great experience while using its products (if you dispute this, take a close look at Apple’s rise over the past ten years). So Delorme has certainly heard from it’s Apple user fans; I’m pretty sure their working on those “hoops and hurdles” as we scribble on this forum. Time to be patient.

  225. “According to Samsung product page their Galaxy wifi devices have GPS, but reading their user forums they are usable for GPS as long as they are connected to a network via wifi. Users on some Samsung forums complain that ‘built-in’ GPS does not work unconnected to wifi. However”
    I have a Samsung Galaxy S II Skyrocket cellphone with the Android OS and GPS functionality. I do use it for geocaching where I am not within range of a Wi-Fi hotspot. I assume that the Google maps on which the geocache icons are superimposed are transmitted via the AT&T 4G cellular service.

  226. iPhone app = my money in Delorme’s hands! Count me in for an iOS request.

  227. iPhone/iPad app!! Another hand up for Apple support….that said this might be a good excuse for me to get my first Andriod phone!

  228. I have seen this question posted here already, but I have not seen a definitive answer yet(?) Has any one been able to determine whether a wifi only android device, or an unlocked android phone without a phone plan will work with InReach? If yes, could you share the make and model? Thanks in advance!

  229. I’m another person who would purchase the device if you had iPhone support. In fact, I’d probably buy 2 or 3 for our business if you had iphone support. So PLEASE build us an app and watch as your sale skyrocket!.

  230. +1 for iOS support. I’d buy it in a minute, but it’s a total non-starter for me until then.

  231. +1 for iOS support. If only I had known this product existed earlier! I bought an Iphone 4s and a spot connect a month ago and getting the two to pair via bluetooth has been an extremely rare event. It would have been unfortunate for Delorme to start with iOS support only to receive bad reviews due to iphone bluetooth issues. Too bad for me but still a wise decision to start with Android.

  232. Vote for iOS. The iPad and Iphone market is too big to ignore.

  233. (Forgive me if this has all ready been said…)

    Subscription – If you could pay a months minimum subscription, surely people would buy it simply because you DON’T have to pay for a whole years subs (like all the other offerings in this market), especially as the very people who might want it are almost certainly only going to need it for a fairly short time, but regularly – like once or twice a year.

    And why isn’t there an iPhone app – why only nasty android? It seems odd that you have written of the very segment of the market – and a BIG one – that might be interested in (and be able to pay for) the inReach – ie the iPhone crowd. We all know that android is the poor mans iPhone (!).


  234. I really hate to break up all the Appleboy iOS worship, but for those of you using the inReach, have you come up with a good pouch for backpack strap (preferred) or belt carry. I’m wondering if RipOffs makes something compatible. The inReach is a little on the fat side for most cell phone cases. Also, does anyone know of Ram Mount or similar windshield mount for using the in Reach in a vehicle or boat. Thanks in advance.

  235. I have not found a pouch yet for the inreach. what i am currently doing is using the clip on the inreach to attach to the pack and using a neck strap that came with the delorme to tether the inreach to the pack incase it get dislodged. the inreach will not go crashing to the ground.

  236. Thanks. I did some searching last night and, believe it or not, Ram Mounts already has a mount designed specifically for the inReach. Looks like its scheduled to deliver sometime in mid-February. It would appear Ram is adding its vote of support to the inReach.

  237. Would totally buy this if it worked with the iPhone. It doesn’t make sense — from a customer or business perspective — to not have iPhone compatibility as iPhone recently passed Android in terms of units sold.

    (Some company out there is going to come out with an iPhone version and clean up! Why not you, since you’ve got a head start?)

    Are you working on an iPhone setup at all? If so, will it be ready soon… what month/year?

    Would love to hear your answer so I know whether I should write your product off as an option altogether.


  238. This is what every contractor needs who travel overseas. It should be standard issue for all military forward deployed.

  239. Wow! I’m the owner of Alaska Statewide Guides and use multiple devices for communicating and and tracking guides and clients in the field. I have been waiting for something to come along that will take the place of everything we have patched together over the years. The ability to tack the location of guides and clients in the field is a plus. The ability to send SOS messages is a wonderful safety item also but the ability to communicate via text message two ways with the same device will save our company allot of money. I was reading about the inreach and how it can send locations between devices when connected to your pn-60 now that is WOW! The safety applications to this are mind blowing.. We can have multiple trips out at one time in extreme locations and I can find them and check on them on foot or with a small airplane without clumsy radio traffic… be sure you email me when I can purchase one.

  240. Another vote for iPhone app. I would drop SPOT in a heartbeat. Its bluetooth connectivity sucks.

  241. Going on a trip into the wilderness of Canada and am really interested in purchasing the InReach device vs the SPOT. If Delorme will provide an upgrade path discount or Trade-in/swap from the Android version to the future iPhone version, I woudl literally purchase the InReach the same day.

  242. I have been monitoring this page since it’s creation. I am with everyone else. 9 months later and still no Iphone app. Apparently there isn’t enough demand for it…

  243. It would be cool if it could boost your cell service.

  244. I’m getting tired of this blog. Everybody is saying they want InReach for iPhone and the company hasn’t even responded to our suggestion. Are they going to make it or not? Should I keep subscribing to this blog or should I find something else that IS compatible with iPhone?

  245. Yep could really do with this if ONLY it went with an iphone. We are about to travel Australia and feel the Spot Connect not receiving communication isn’t good enough in an emergency. Hoping this one comes out to use with iphone VERY SOON!!!

  246. I think the fact that DeLorme does not even acknowledge the iOS issue and either confirm they are working on integration or not going to proceed is very telling. As a customer this sends a strong signal that they are not interested in the overall best interest of the user. I am no longer holding any hope that DeLorme will update this to work with the iPhone any time soon. I will most like go with the spot. Not only does it work with iOS, but it is much smaller. After having the Android inReach in my hands, I don’t think I can except the size difference, for the benefit of just receiving text. When I go into the backcountry every square inch and ounce counts.

  247. Read through all the early posts; you’ll see they HAVE in fact responded to the iPhone hue and cry [read whines]—they are working on it, or will be working on it no doubt. As an iphone owner I’m not holding my breath as to exactly when it will come, but have no doubt it will.

  248. Have pn60 and spot now. PN60 has option for inReach now, if I buy inReach for PN60, can I also use it with android phone in furture? I ask because inReach has part number for PN60, and another part number for android phone.
    Have good experience with spot, look forward to upgrade with inReach.

  249. Jerry–you will not be able to do that. I believe the same Q/A was asked/answered above. The two use different wireless technology/chips and as such are not interchangeable.

    I had a similar question and spoke to support. I wanted to know if I bought the Android version if it would later work with IOS/Apple–they cannot confirm nor deny at this time.

  250. I started reading the blog, saw the iOS discussion early on and was hopeful that DeLorme was going to get an iOS version out within a reasonable time. Nothing yet so I guess I’ll keep my eyes open for competitors. Android isn’t an option for me as I’ve been disappointed too many times by Android devices and don’t want to waste my money on any more Android junk.

  251. Well, my “Android junk” Casio Commando is working perfectly with the inReach receiver. I’m sorry that some are finding out for the first time that the world does not revolve around the Iphone. And good luck finding those “competitors.” No one has anything like this (two way communication) that will work with the Iphone. You can thank your friends at Apple for throwing technological hurdles at developers like Delorme to prevent integration.

  252. I would very likely buy one of these if iPhone and PN-60w support could be integrated into a single unit no larger or heavier than the current one. From what I read this isn’t going to happen, but this would certainly be ideal if it could.

  253. IPhone for sure, would never use an android and don’t have one friend that does. I have a spot because it works with Iphone and would loike to recieve text messages, if it worked for iphone you would have one more sale with me !!!! Please listen to your users, I’d say your cornering yourself with android, take a look at how many iphones are out there vs. android, its a no brainer.

  254. I never thought I’d be on the iPhone side of the bandwagon – but my company – a global Fortune 500 corporation with over 8500+ employees just banned all Android devices from connecting to our networks for email. We have our choice of using either an iPhone or a BlackBerry (a dying product line). I have no choice now to wait for the IOS version.

  255. I agree.

    And I hereby BEG DeLorme to at least tell us again that they are working on this?

    Why haven’t we heard ANYTHING from Chip Noble and DeLorme on this topic since July 2011?

    The customers are speaking. Please listen, DeLorme!

  256. Just saw the inreach in an ad, was ready to go buy it until I realized no iphone support.
    Needs iphone app no question about that. Hurry up and get it done, you will sell more inreach.

  257. I have an idea… let’s let Delorme update us on it’s Apple ios development. Unless you’re a psychic.

    If Delorme is having issue with Apple, then let Apple users take Apple to task. Instead of having to listen to Android users blather on a blog. You’re merely getting in the way of other customers trying to get product support.

    And honestly, no one cares if you don’t like/or get the iPhones. Step into the year 2012 dinosaurous maximus. Not sure what you use your phone for. There’s no perfect phone out there. But Android currently fails to perform well in our corporate environment, so I’m well aware of the limitations of Android phones. And until someone decides to engineer it to work for us, we’ll still be using our iPhones. And, you are out of your depth while attempting to address all users.

    So everyone please spare us the ridiculous lectures. We are here to speak to Delorme.

  258. Let me know when you guys have an iPad /iPhone app and then i’ll be sold and get one immediately. Our aircraft fly with 3 iPads and an 1 iPhone and use a host of apps to do everything from view charts to perform takeoff and landing calcs.

    iPads are quickly becoming the device of choice for aviators around the globe wishing to replace the tons of paper charts carried in the cockpit with electronic flight bags (EFBs) and being able to connect one of these units to an iPad would be like finding the holy grail.

    We spoke to Spot about adding two-way messaging to their unit last year and i’m betting now they wished they had done it.

  259. I live in the UAE and do lots of trekking to Oman, Nepal, and Africa with groups of people. I need to know if this will work 1) with the topo maps here and 2)for emergency services here.

    current EMS sometimes means calling contractors that can reach you faster, but still is important for me to have something that will work on the side of a mountain and in a canyon or valley, a far distance from mobile range.



  261. Just ordered my new InReach today, been using spot paired with PN60. Thanks to DeLorme last week I bought a unlocked HTC Nexus One Ardroid phone to use with InReach. Android phones sales just whent over 50% of market.

    Since Android is open market, it will be like the Mac and Windows PC market, with new software applications for free, it will be hard for iphone to have more than a small share of market. Dont need to feel sorry for Apple as their stock is doing very good.

  262. If you do not have your phone on, how will the message get to the phone. Does the inReach store the messages?

  263. Just learned of your product. I have a SPOT Connect sitting on my desk, still in the box. If you could say when iPhone compatibility will be available for the InReach, the SPOT Connect is going right back to the store. Are we talking weeks, months, years?
    Please move to the iPhone (IOS) platform soon. You have a great product, but I’m not buying it unless it is iPhone friendly.
    Thanks for listening!

  264. Delorme’s silence is deafening. No iOS support = no sale for me. I’m not going to buy an Android phone to attach to something I’ll use a couple times a year if that. I’ve been hiking for thirty years without one and can go a few more years or more until someone else comes along!

  265. Bought a Google Nexus One Android phone to use with inReach. Love Android software, so bought Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus at Costco. Both units worked on bluetooth with inReach with no problems. Am using T-Mobil for low priced data plan, but has bad coverage in Mojave Reserve where I like to explore.
    Ordered new AT&T Andriod prepaid phone, AT&T has best coverage along with Verizon in the outback. Saw in news that Andriod phone sales reached over 50% of market share. You can buy a good andriod cell phone for just over $125.00 and use it with inReach.
    Love how the DeLorme TOPO maps look on the 7 inch screen! I can tether the Samsung from the unlocked HTC Nexus One and have unlimited data for free.

  266. 10-4, Jerry, and if you get stuck out there use it to call me and I’ll come. I’ve travelled almost all dirt roads west of US 95, east of Afton Canyon, south of I15 and north of US 66.

  267. I just checked with Yellowbrick today. They promised to release the iphone app in the near future. The app is still under approval process at Apple. Its not very nice of Yellowbrick to promote Bluetooth connectivity with iphone without having a solution. Are all tracker companies the same?

  268. Thanks Chris! I didn’t know there were options other than Spot but Yellow brick looks like a good one – even if they do advertise vaporware. At least they seem to be trying unlike some.

  269. I purchased a Spot Connect this week Foti use with my iPhone. Just returned it (unopened) today. I’m waiting for the inReach to become iOS compatible. Hurry up! ;-)))

  270. Just received a new catalog from The dated 2012. On page 23 they show the DeLorme inReach as “NEW for IOS/Android”. Price is $249.95 and is item #DE8449. However, when you go to their site, no such item. I wonder what’s up with this? Perhaps the IOS compatibile inReach is soon to release? As another writer stated, DeLorme’s silence on this is deafening!

  271. +1 for iPhone compatibility! Anxiously awaiting the IOS version before I reach for my credit card!

  272. Can someone from Delorme at least reply that there will be an iPhone option in the future.

    SPOT Connect – one alternative for iPhone
    Yellowbrick – still a big question
    IsatPhone Pro – an alternative with significant differences from the above but useable

  273. Where is the iPhone app? Its been almost a year! Maybe this is why Delorme is not 1st place in GPS tech – their sales choices don’t go for the greatest potential!
    Before all the Android fanboys get all uptight, here is what I mean. The sport-ute started life as a truck. Then quickly it became THE vehicle to have for people that never get further off road than the supermarket parking lot.
    There are a TON of ipone/ipad users who would buy this device up in a heartbeat if it had an iOS app – and most of them would never take it to a mountain top or cave. Most would just like to have relatives be able to follow their progress on a drive out of town or send the occasional message when ATT has no signal.
    You make a product for the Jeep crowed and are completely forgetting about the OTHER 95% of sport-ute drivers whou COULD be buying your product… if only you had an iOS client!

  274. Any chance of mapping systems outside North America? An in-reach paired with Oziexplorer maps for Australia would be the holy grail for every 4WD, Hiker, Sea kayaker in Australia.

  275. Thanks for the iPhone app! I’ll be ordering one this weekend. It’s exactly what I have been waiting for.

    I have several questions about the billing plan. Is the ten-message pre-overage figure on the Safety Plan ten messages per month or ten per year? The chart is a ambiguous on that point (also, with respect to the similar allotment for the other plans as well). If it is per-month, do unused messages carry over?

    I notice that you have different billing plans for US and Canada. With the US plan, can one use it anywhere in the world (except for the rare places where Iridium may be blocked such as North Korea) or only in the US? I’m planning to do the Tour Mount Blanc next year (through three countries) and would want to know if I can use the US plan or if I need to activate some sort of European plan(s) as well.

    Thanks again!!

  276. John,

    The plans are all monthly, so the Safety plan has 10 free messages per month. There is no carry over. All of the billing is monthly as well.

    The US (and Canadian) plans are for worldwide use. The difference is where you live. If your billing address is in the US, you would choose from the US plans. Once you’ve activated your inReach on a plan, you can take it anywhere.

    I hope that helps. Let me know if you have any other questions.

    Mike McKenney
    Team DeLorme

  277. Have some billing questions Mike: On my first bill, was $1.50 for a text a message, is a text messages not part of 10 messages per month? If you send an email message, and receive a reply, does that count as one message or two? How can I keep track of the ten free messages a month? Thanks to your inReach for Android, We now have, one Andriod Smartphone, 4 Andriod tablets in our household.

  278. The subscriptions may be monthly but what you don’t mention is that the minimum subscription period is ONE YEAR, according to your web site – so not much use for the infrequent user and a deal breaker for me, sadly. MW

  279. Thanks for the info – it was very helpful. The web page is clear that the subscription is on an annual basis. For me, that still is a very good deal: for less than the cost of renting and using an Iridium phone for a week (that I used to do for extended backpack trips), I get access for an entire year! After researching satellite time packages, I have come to the conclusion that the Safety Plan is a great price for a two-way data plan for occasional messaging. My InReach is scheduled to arrive on Friday!

  280. John, that’s great news that you are going to use the inReach! Be sure to let us know what you think of the system after your first trip. I would encourage you to give a look at the recreation plan because it gives you two very important features – unlimited tracking and unlimited pre-defined inReach messages. That means that you can start tracking when you hit the trail and send as many “stopping here for the night” messages as you’d like and save your custom text messages for really important communications like “I made it to the summit!” There’s a seasonal version that will save you money if you only need the device for four seasons. The Safety plan will definitely give you all of the safety features and the ability to send 10 custom text messages each month, I’m just throwing it out there because the tracking feature is an important part of my use and how people see what I’m up to when I’m in the woods. Safe travels when you get out there! -Chip

  281. Check out earthmate in your apps. It’s free. It will download to your IPhone and IPad. I have already downloaded it. Now just waiting till I can get the InReach for 249.00 plus the 9.00 a month for service.

  282. I live in Terrace,British Columbia ,I would like to know where can I purchase one of these.I travel alot to work on the northern hiways and sometimes I come across accidents and no way to communicate to get help.Thank you

  283. In addition to the official list posted, I’ve also seen it at London Drugs.

  284. If this product works as advertised, it will
    be an awesome alternative to the very costly sat phone for people in remote areas.

  285. Has there been any movement on support for Windows Phone (7 or 8). I want to buy an InReach, but won’t do so without that.

  286. Can’t get the firmware update.I have the send to gps plugin installed and the inReach in program mode. I just get an error.

  287. Couldn’t a basic rescue version, that simply with connects with the GEOS emergency service be made available ? I mean a unit that simply gives rescue access to the Iridium satellites. A unit without Bluetooth, or pairing facilities with laptops, or to social media accounts etc. A unit where a text message from inReach will need to tell you to go to the dealer to update ones firmware ?

  288. @Luther – I have no idea why Delorme would want to do that. You are essentially describing a PLB. There are many versions out there and they have access to their own satellite constellation. If that is all you want, then simply purchase a PLB. The InReach does so much more (two way communication) and in a form factor that is small enough to take wherever you go. If you don’t like the social media add-ons, simply ignore them, they are not really adding to the cost of the unit or the service. And I, for one, am having no problems with doing firmware updates. Why would I want to be required to go to a distant dealer and waste my time and gasoline having someone do updates that I can do myself.

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