Subscribe by Email

Your email:

Search

Consultation

contact-a-marine-satellite-expert  

Free GMN Guides

   Blue Water Cruising Communications Gu

Follow Me

Browse by Tag

Global Marine Networks Blog

Current Articles | RSS Feed RSS Feed

Inmarsat Announces Free GEOS Emergency SOS Service for IsatPhone 2

  
  
  

Inmarsat IsatPhone 2Inmarsat just announced that new and existing IsatPhone 2 users can have free use of GEOS emergency response (SOS) service as long as they have an active postpaid airtime plan

Not surprisingly, SOS functionality is of big importance to satellite phone users and many satellite phone manufacturers have incorporated a SOS button into the design of the phone itself. Now IsatPhone 2 users can use the handy "one-press assistance button" on the handheld phone to connect directly with GEOS. 

GEOS's IERCC (International Emergency Response Coordination Center) is headquartered in Houston, TX and is staffed 24/7, 365 days a year. 

Once the button is pressed on the IsatPhone 2, a message is automatically triggered that sends the user's GPS coordinates to the GEOS center. GEOS will contact the user directly and establish the nature of the emergency before then contacting the appropriate authorities for help or rescue, depending on the user's region and what type of emergency is at hand. 

GEOS SOS Service FREE for IsatPhone 2 Postpaid Users

All postpaid IsatPhone 2 customers have access to this service for free as a new feature of their postpaid service. Inmarsat will begin including documentation on how to use the service and set it up with all new IsatPhone 2 phones shipped, but any existing IsatPhone 2 customer with an active postpaid account can register for this service now.

Register for free GEOS SOS satellite service here: www.geosalliance.com/inmarsat

What If I Have Prepaid Airtime for My IsatPhone 2 Satellite Phone?

If you have prepaid airtime for your IsatPhone 2 you can still sign up for GEOS service, but there will be an annual fee for the service. 

Need Advice on Satellite Phones?

We're here to help with your satellite communication needs. Request a free satellite communications consultation today to get a custom recommendation for satcomms just for you. 

Free GRIB Software Now Offered As Part of XGate Satellite Data Service

  
  
  

XGate Satellite Data Service Now Offers FREE GRIB Weather Software and An Integrated GRIB Viewer At No Extra Cost

Now, with just a few clicks, XGate users can easily see weather forecast visualizations so they can make critical decisions based on weather patterns, and be confident on the water or in remote areas.


XGate Satellite Weather on iOS, Android, Mac, and Windows

There are many different options for getting weather over satellite, but the easiest is using the brand new built-in weather feature within XGate satellite data service. This compression data service allows you to send and receive email over very narrow bandwidth satellite devices (like a satellite phone).

The new weather feature in XGate has two different functions:

iOS and Android

From within the XGate app in iOS and Android, there is a full-featured weather forecast section that allows you to see the weather forecast and meteorological information about a chosen location. 

Mac and PC

From within the XGate program on Mac and PC, there is a new GRIB file retrieval and viewer built directly into XGate. You can choose your location on a map and request and view weather information for that location (wind direction and speed, primary wave heigh, wave period, and wave direction, and convective precipitation). 

Powerful GRIB File Weather Viewer

XGate GRIB Weather File Downloads

The GRIB file viewer that is now integrated in XGate is based on GRIBPlot - an easy-to-use GRIB viewer that also retrieves GRIB files through XGate's compression email service. GRIBPlot has many features for viewing GRIB files, including:

  • Layers
  • Contour Data
  • Vector Lines
  • Bitmap Data
  • Zoom
  • Animate 

With the built-in GRIB viewer you can retrieve GRIB files by pointing the cursor over the geographical area where you would like weather information for and then clicking the "Email" button. This will send a request to your XGate outbox. When you're ready to download your GRIB file, you do a session in XGate, wait a minute or two, and then do another session to retrieve the GRIB file. 

Learn More

free GRIB filesXGate uses Global Marine Network's popular GRIB retrieval system and can retrieve the following information for GRIB files:

  • Wind
  • Wave
  • Pressure
  • Precipitation

The GRIB robot also has a batch mode to schedule GRIB files to be delivered to you daily. 

You can learn about the GMN GRIB Service here.

XGate is a prepaid subscription service with service lengths from as little as 7 days to up to 2 years. You can learn more about XGate herearn More About XGate


Press Release: RedPort Adds GRIB Weather Software To XGate Satellite Data Services

  
  
  

Windows and Mac software lets XGate users select, download and view marine weather forecasts using the GRIB format over narrow bandwidth satellite and cellular networks.

Maryville, TN (PRWEB) March 02, 2015

RedPort Global, the leader in advancing satellite data and VoIP services, today announced the addition of integrated GRIB software with its XGate suite of satellite data services. XGate is the world’s leading independent satellite data acceleration service letting people easily and affordably access accelerated email, web, weather software, social media and blogging wherever they go. This announcement follows on the heels of the addition of NOAA weather forecasts to the iOS and Android versions of XGate.

“GRIB weather files are the standard for downloading weather forecasts over a satellite link, but until now satellite users have been using multiple applications to get and view weather forecasts.” said Dr. Luis Soltero, CTO of RedPort Global. “Now, with just a few clicks, XGate users can easily see weather forecast visualizations so they can make critical decisions based on weather patterns, and be confident on the water or in remote areas.”

XGate GRIB Software is a basic weather program, included at no additional cost, that has the features many boaters will need to get started with GRIB weather forecasts. Users can select, download and view GRIB files including wind, wave, surface pressure and precipitation. Additionally, the software can display other GRIB data the user has obtained from other sources. XGate weather software is designed as an excellent entry point into using GRIB files.

xgate weather integration

Other XGate services include: 

Accelerated Email – Email service offers up to 20 times acceleration versus uncompressed speeds, saving up to 85% on satellite airtime

Accelerated Web Browsing – Compression uses a web proxy service to provide users with 3-5 times average web acceleration, while also blocking ads, checking for malicious sites and compressing images.

Mobile Weather Forecasts – XGate mobile weather forecasts delivery up to 7 days of a variety of text-based weather forecasts for iOS and Android users.

Social media – Users can post text and photos to Facebook and Twitter over satellite and cellular narrowband devices

Blogging – Users get free access to a Sailblogs premium basic account to help them share their adventures while travelling with their satphone

XGate Mobile Apps Compatible Operating Systems: 

  • Apple iOS devices (iPhone, iPad & iPod Touch)
  • Google Android smartphones and tablets

RedPort XGate is also offered by leading satellite service providers as a white-label solution under other brand names, including: OCENS Mail, Network Innovations Speedmail, Satphonestore.com Satphone.Me, MVS MVSMail, SatLink from BlueCosmo/SatWorx, and XGate for Telecom Italia.

About RedPort Global 
RedPort Global, the leader in advancing satellite data speeds and services, helps Fixed and Mobile Satellite Services providers and their customers by offering the industry’s fastest, most reliable and easy-to-use email, web, and other hardware and software services to maritime, oil and gas, first responder and business continuity users. The company’s products include XGate high-speed satellite email, WeatherNet weather and oceanographic data software, and vessel tracking systems. Ship to shore marine satellite solutions are offered as branded or white-label solutions for the world’s premier satellite data service providers. RedPort Global is a Global Marine Networks brand.

For more information on how RedPort Global is Making Airtime Count™ – whether ship to shore, or in remote or emergency communications environments visit http://www.redportglobal.com 

See the original press release at PRWeb here



Learn More

You can learn more about GRIB files here and you can learn about XGate here.

Iridium Re-Epoch Will Change Time on Handheld Satellite Phones

  
  
  

Iridium will be changing the system time on its satellites on March 3rd, 2015. Iridium calls this "re-epoching." After that point, Iridium handsets (like the Iridium Extreme, Iridium 9555, Iridium 9505a, Iridium 9505, and the Iridium 9500) will display the incorrect system time until users enter in a string of numbers. 

You can reset the system time on your satellite phone to reflect the correct time by entering a quick string of numbers into your handset. 

  • If you are reading this and it is not yet March 3rd, 2015, don't do anything to your handset. You won't see an incorrect time until after March 3rd. 
  • If you are reading this and it is already past March 3rd, 2015, please follow the instructions below. 

Note: There will be no impact to handset functionality other than system time display. 

Iridium 9555 System Time ChangeHow to Reset the System Time on Your Iridium Handheld Satellite Phone

At this time, the following instructions only apply to Iridium 9555 and Iridium 9575: 

1) After the Iridium Time Re-Epoch Occurs (March 3, 2015) you can reset the time on your Iridium 9555 or Iridium 9575. 

2) Dial *#99#2014051114235500# on an Iridium 9555 or Iridium Extreme (9575) satellite phone

3) Press the green key

4) Then power off/on.

Resetting the System Time on an Older Iridium Handheld Satellite Phone

Iridium 9500, 9505, and 9505A customers will need to set the updated time and date from their phone menu. The extended phone set-up menu must be set to "On" (see page 137 of Iridium 9505A user guide, page 149 of the Iridium 9500 user guide, or page 139 of the Iridium 9505 user guide), then follow these instructions to set time and date: 

1. Follow the steps in "Getting to Phone Setup..." to get to "Set Time and Date," and then press OK to select. 

2. Press MENU to choose "Set Home Time + Date" or "Set Away Time + Date," and then press OK. You will see "Enter Home Time or Enter Away Time" and the time currently set.

3. Press OK to accept the displayed time.

or

Enter the time in 24-hour format, and then press OK. You will see "Enter Home Date or Enter Away Time" and the date currently set.

4. Press OK to accept the displayed date. You will see "Completed."

or

Enter the date in day(dd)-month(mm)-year(yy) form and then press OK. You will see "Completed."

5. Press and hold C to exit the menu. 

Still Need Help?

We'd be happy to recommend the perfect satellite communications equipment and airtime for your needs. You can get a free satellite communications consultation or just give us a ring at +1.877.379.8723 (US/CA) or +1.865.379.8723 (Intl) - we're here to help!


iridium satellite phones blog ctaIridium Satellite Phone AirtimeAurora Iridium Satellite WiFi Terminal

Trade in AxcessPoint and Upgrade to Optimizer for 50% Off

  
  
  

 Optimizer 50% Off Rebate

For a limited time, trade-in your Iridium AxcessPoint device and get Optimizer for 50% off the retail price. 

Iridium is discontinuing their Iridium AxcessPoint device. While this won't immediately affect AxcessPoint and AxcessPoint Mail & Web users, it does mean that in the future there won't be software updates or hardware service for AxcessPoint. If you upgrade your satellite phone or upgrade your computer or mobile device, the service may not work at all for you. 

RedPort Optimizer vs AxcessPoint - Is it Worth Upgrading?

Optimizer WiFi HotspotAside from the fact that Optimizer is a rapidly growing, Iridium-certified product with no end in sight and excellent support to back it up, there are some tangible benefits to using Optimizer over the AxcessPoint. 

  • When using its external battery, the Optimizer's battery lasts more than 10 times longer than AxcessPoint's. 
  • Optimizer has a faster processor, which speeds up connections, updates, and bootup. 
  • Optimizer has a longer WiFi range.
  • Optimizer has much better cross-platform integration. 

And that's just the hardware. What about the software? 

XGate or Iridium Mail & Web

XGate Satellite Email ServiceOptimizer has traditionally only worked with XGate satellite email service (or one of the RedPort Optimizer-compatible services like Satphone.me, SpeedMail, and OCENS Mail, among others). Now, Iridium AxcessPoint Mail & Web users can use Iridium's free email program - now called Iridium Mail & Web - with the Optimizer. 

Keep in mind, however, that Iridium Mail & Web only works with smartphones and tablets. Iridium's version that works with laptops and computers (called AxcessPoint Mail & Web) will be discontinued along with the AxcessPoint device.

XGate may be a better choice for many users because Iridium Mail & Web, along with only working on smartphones and tablets, will only work while using Iridium satellite airtime. XGate allows you to use any internet connection you may have, saving time and money. 

Regardless of whether you use XGate or Iridium Mail & Web, you have the flexibility to use the compression email program that works best for you, all in tandem with Optimizer's world-class firewall.  

50% Off Optimizer?

Here's how it works: you purchase RedPort Optimizer for full retail price and then send us back your AxcessPoint device. When we receive your AxcessPoint (along with this form) we will refund $75 back to the credit card you used to purchase Optimizer. (If you purchased Optimizer from another certified RedPort dealer, please contact them for instructions). 

That's it! Easy peasy.

This promotion isn't going to last long, so make sure to upgrade now. 

XGate Satellite Email Named One of Best Satellite Communications Apps

  
  
  

XGate Satellite EmailXGate satellite email service was named by Global Telesat Communications as one of the best apps for satellite communications. 

XGate is state-of-the-art data compression software that delivers email, weather, web, and social media - right over your satellite phone. XGate is carrier-independent which means that you can use it with any satellite carrier using an IP-based satellite device (ie: the vast majority of them). 

Global Telesat Communications said this about XGate:

"XGate is the easy way to access email through a satellite connection.  The app compresses the data sent and received offering up to 85% savings on satellite airtime expenses.  It also blocks out other unnecessary data use by the phone to avoid a large bill at the end of your trip!"

XGate is the leading independent satellite data service with thousands of people all over the world currently using XGate to keep connected over satellite. 

Although Global Telesat Communications specifically mentions the iOS and Android versions of XGate, XGate is also available for PC and Mac. Once you have an XGate account you can use XGate on any device you have - no need to pay more to use different or multiple devices. 

You can read the whole article from Global Telesat Communications here: Our Pick of the Best Satellite Communications Apps

XGate Satellite Email Service

You can read more about XGate here. If you have any questions about XGate or would like advice on the right satellite communications setup for your needs, please get in contact. We're here to help. 

 

 

Vessel Tracking Over Satellite

  
  
  

Satellite GPS Vessel Tracking

Vessel tracking is a huge priority in the marine world. Whether you’re a single sailor who wants to make sure his family can follow his route or a large fleet operator needing real-time position reports from your entire fleet, satellite GPS vessel tracking is integral to knowing where you - and your assets - are in the world. 

There are three satellite GPS trackers that Global Marine Networks offers. Each of these units comes in a marinized, extremely hardy dome with water resistance up to 1 meter. They are mounted on standard threaded 1" antenna mounts although you will need to purchase the antenna mounts separately from a marine supply store. 

All prices quoted here are up to date as of publication, but please check with us to make sure that prices have not been changed. 

XTracker IR

XTracker IRXTracker IR (Iridium) is a robust, dependable and extremely compact tracking device that sends out GPS position reports at pre-programmed intervals from anywhere in the world using proven Iridium satellite technology. Position reports contain date, time, latitude, longitude, and average course and speed over the ground. GPS position reports are recorded, transmitted, and posted on the web in 20 seconds, on average. XTracker’s modest power requirements make it ideal for remote locations where solar panels or batteries are the only source of electricity.

Because the XTracker IR operates on the Iridium satellite network, this tracker offers truly global pole-to-pole coverage. 

MSRP: $1,799
Learn more about the XTracker IR here
Get a quote for XTracker IR by contacting us here

XTracker BR

XTracker BRThis tracker only works if there is a satellite broadband unit on board (VSAT, Fleetbroadband, Iridium Pilot, BGAN, Thuraya IP, and others) and provides position reports from anywhere on the planet. Unit can be connected to a long-life battery to keep the unit self-contained. Because the XTracker BR routes the position reports through your satellite broadband device, the frequency of the position reports can be whatever you want. Hourly? Sure. Every 10 minutes? No problem. Every 30 seconds? Done.

There is no additional charge for XTracker services for increased frequency, although you may incur additional charges on  your satellite airtime bill for the airtime required to send the GPS pings.

MSRP: $329
Learn more about the XTracker BR here
Get a quote for XTracker BR by contacting us here.

XTracker GS

XTracker GSThe RedPort XTracker GS allows you to track your assets and vessels anywhere within the expansive Globalstar Simplex coverage area without even relying on powering cables (although you can power over Ethernet, as well). Tracking can be set to every 5, 10, 30, or 60 minutes. Faster tracking is available (every 2.5 minutes), but it increases the monthly price. The tracking duration on these units has to be set on the tracker itself. It cannot be changed remotely.  

Depending on the type of battery being used, the XTracker GS can last as long as 10 years without changing the battery or needing any kind of upkeep.

MSRP: $299
Learn more about the XTracker GS here
Get a quote for XTracker GS by contacting us here.

How The GPS Vessel Tracking Works

Tracking for all units is provided through RedPort Tracking and consists of a detailed, robust online tracking interface that provides:

  • Real-time Position and Tracking
  • Longitude and latitude info
  • Emergency alarm/ SOS/Movement alarm/ Overspeed alarm/ Border crossing alert.
  • Geo-fence alarm
  • Course and Speed (on web-based tracking site) 
  • Web-based tracking or mobile-phone-based tracking
  • Central Monitoring system (web-base)
  • History of tracking movements
  • Ability to track hundreds of vessels or assets on one web-based monitoring system

Tracking is a monthly charge that encompasses the airtime required to send the satellite pings as well as a small fee for the dedicated web-portal and continuing tracking services.

We recommend going to tracking.redportglobal.com and clicking on the "Live Demo" option. This will give you a view of how the web interface works and what information can be derived from it.

redport tracking screenshots 2 resized 600 

Get a Custom Vessel Tracking Quote

We often work with large vessel operators and would be happy to provide you with a custom quote for tracking solutions needing a volume price. You can contact us here

Satellite Internet At Sea: Hardware, Airtime, and Pricing

  
  
  

We often get asked what is the most affordable option for satellite internet while at sea. As the satellite industry matures, more and more options are becoming available for internet connectivity on your boat and some of them can be very affordable. The options we've detailed here are intended for single users or small crew situations. (For large satellite internet options at sea, please contact us). 

Satellite internet is still more expensive than any land-based internet you will find. How affordable (or not) it can be depends almost exclusively on how you use it. 

Low-data usage (low cost)

Email
Downloading weather files
Very small webpages (like NOAA, etc) 

Note: if this is the kind of data you'll exclusively be doing, you will also be very well-served by a handheld satellite phone, as most of them can do this for you for a much smaller up front hardware cost. Popular options are the Iridium 9555, Iridium GO!, and RedPort Aurora

High-data usage (higher costs)

Web-browsing, especially without compression
Any kind of streaming service (Youtube, Skype, Spotify, etc)
Certain VoIP services
Large and frequent file downloads

Satellite Terminals for Marine Satellite Internet

Now that we know what kind of internet activities will most affect your satellite airtime bill, let's talk about the equipment. 

Iridium Pilot

Iridium PilotThe Iridium Pilot is a fixed installation antenna that provides broadband capability. It is one of the least-expensive hardware options for marine satellite internet. Although it runs slow by land speeds (up to 128kbps - about twice the speed of dial-up) it is significantly faster than a handheld satellite phone (which runs at 2.4 kbps - 25 times slower than dial-up).

Because of this and other operational features of the unit, doing basic activities like email, weather, and voice calling becomes incredibly inexpensive. Downloading a GRIB file over a handheld satellite phone will cost somewhere around $2.15 in airtime. Downloading the same GRIB file over the Pilot would cost about 2 cents in airtime. While the upfront costs of the unit are more than a handheld, the ongoing costs are significantly less. Adding in the ability to web-browse (which, while expensive and slow, is possible and a very nice feature to have in an emergency!) means that you get a much higher quality of service than with a handheld satellite phone. 

Hardware cost: $4,793 for the Iridium Pilot Savings Bundle
Airtime cost: From as low as $39 a month, with seasonal contracts available.
Estimated low-usage cost: Around $50 - $100 a month will cover you for email, downloading weather GRIB files, and doing emergency web-browsing.
Estimated high-usage cost: Committing to bundle with 1,000 MB per month will cost you just over $1,000 a month, with per-MB overage from $0.56 each.
Coverage: Worldwide, pole-to-pole 

More info: we have a great (free!) guide to affordable satellite broadband that specifically looks at usage cases for the Iridium Pilot. You can check that out here

Inmarsat FleetBroadband

Sailor FleetBroadbandFleetBroadband is one of the oldest marine satellite broadband options and certainly one of the most reliable. FleetBroadband comes in 3 different terminals: the 150, 250, and 500. Each terminal reflects the max download speed of the unit (the 150 goes up to 150 kbps). FleetBroadband works most places on the planet, provides smooth connectivity for downloads, and remains a popular choice for everyone from cruisers to commercial vessels. 

Hardware cost: Around $6,000 for a Sailor 150, around $11,000 for a Sailor 250, and around $16,000 for a Sailor 500
Airtime cost: While prepaid options are available, be sure to read the fine print. We recommend a postpaid plan. These start at $106 a month (includes 5 MB of data).  
Estimated low-usage cost: Around $100 a month will cover you for email, downloading weather GRIB files, and doing emergency web-browsing.
Estimated high-usage cost: FleetBroadband postpaid options for high usage jump from 200 MB per month to 2 GB (with nothing in-between). 200 MB per month will cost you around $1,000 and 2 GB per month will cost you around $2,000. 
Coverage: Excellent coverage up to 70 degrees latitude. For worldwide coverage, consider adding an Iridium Pilot as backup. 

Inmarsat Fleet One

cobham fleet oneInmarsat Fleet One is the newest satellite broadband option from Inmarsat. It is basically a lean version of a FleetBroadband 150. It runs at a max speed of 100 kbps and offers very inexpensive airtime options...with a catch. Inmarsat has created a special coverage map for the Fleet One. If you're within the "home zone" you get fantastic airtime rates of around $6 a MB. But if you go outside of the home zone you get dinged at $33 a MB. 

Hardware cost: $3,295 for the AddValue Fleet One and $4,154 for the Sailor Fleet One
Airtime cost: Prepaid and postpaid available. For $60 a month you get 10 MB a month within the home zone. 
Estimated low-usage cost: Around $60 a month will cover you for email, downloading weather GRIB files, and doing limited web-browsing.
Estimated high-usage cost: Hard to calculate. There isn't a graduated scale for Fleet One airtime so usage as high as 1,000 MB a month would cost you around $5,800 (for home zone) - not a great solution. If you plan on doing high data usage, consider a different system. 
Coverage: Excellent coverage up to 70 degrees latitude. For worldwide coverage, consider adding an Iridium Pilot as backup. 

KVH Mini-VSAT

KVH TracPhoneThe KVH Mini-VSAT, more than any other broadband unit available for individual users, offers the fastest, cheapest airtime. With data speeds up to 2 mbps (around what you would get on 3G on your cellphone), you can quickly and easily access the web. There are three KVH systems: the V3, the V7, and the V11. The V3 is the least expensive at around $13,000 and the most popular with individual sailors. 

KVH airtime is where the system really shines. Starting at $49 a month, KVH overage per MB is only $0.99 to $1.99. 

Hardware cost: Around $13,00 for the V3 (although contact us, we might be able to make you deal), around $30,000 for the V7, and around $60,000 for the V11. 
Airtime cost: Postpaid airtime starts at $49 per month. (For the V7 and the V11, unlimited plans are available starting at $995 per month). 
Estimated low-usage cost: $49 a month will easily cover you for email, downloading weather GRIB files, and light web-browsing.
Estimated high-usage cost: 1,000 MB a month costs $999 per month, with $0.99 per MB in overage. 
Coverage: KVH has good coverage in the Northern hemisphere, but doesn't have good coverage in the Southern hemisphere. Many users use an Iridium Pilot as a backup if they plan on traveling outside of the KVH coverage area.

Please contact us for pricing on KVH equipment and airtime.

Find the Right Satellite Internet System

Not sure which marine satellite internet system is right for you? Request a free satellite communications consultation today to get a custom recommendation for satcomms just for you. 

GPS Tracking on the Iridium Extreme (9575): How Does It Work?

  
  
  

One of the nice perks of the Iridium Extreme satellite phone is that it has an integrated GPS. This means that you can do GPS tracking over the Iridium network, giving you coverage everywhere on the planet.

But how does it work? Does it consume your regular airtime? How much does it cost to do satellite GPS tracking with the Iridium Extreme?

How Does Tracking Work on the Iridium Extreme?

Iridium ExtremeTracking on the Iridium Extreme goes over a channel on the Iridium network called LBS. LBS (location based services) is different from the channel that sends voice, data, and SMS and is therefore charged separately, with its own distinct airtime pricing.

LBS is a proprietary subset of a type of satellite transmission protocol called SBD (short burst data). Both LBS and SBD can only send very small bits of data at a time - a max of 1000 bytes - so it’s limited to data transmission like location reports, which are extremely small in size.

Tracking on the Iridium Extreme can be set up to go out on regular intervals or to simply send out a position report every time the phone registers. Tracking on an regular schedule with the Iridium Extreme has the benefit of keeping friends and family back home updated at a routine progress, but means that your phone needs to be powered on and registered with the network the entire time.

If you set your tracking to go out whenever you register you’ll get much less frequent position reports, but you’ll conserve power and not spend as much in airtime.

Does Iridium Extreme Tracking Consume Regular Airtime?

No. Tracking on the Iridium Extreme will not consume your regular voice or data minutes. Airtime for Iridium Extreme tracking is completely separate and in addition to your prepaid or postpaid airtime for your phone.

Furthermore, you must have an active SIM card (with either prepaid or postpaid airtime) in order to also use the Iridium Extreme’s tracking feature.

Where Can I See My Satellite Position Reports?

RedPort TrackingWhen Iridium receives the position reports from your Iridium Extreme satellite phone, it can then send those position reports to a LBS-certified third-party provider to then show your position and history on a map. Global Marine Networks works with RedPort Tracking, an industry-leading tracking platform that consists of a detailed, robust online tracking interface that provides:

  • Real-time Position and Tracking

  • Longitude and latitude info

  • Emergency alarm/ SOS/Movement alarm/ Overspeed alarm/ Border crossing alert.

  • Geo-fence alarm

  • Course and Speed (on web-based tracking site)

  • Web-based tracking or mobile-phone-based tracking

  • Central Monitoring system (web-base)

  • History of tracking movements

  • Ability to track hundreds of vessels or assets on one web-based monitoring system

RedPort Tracking ScreenShot

How Much Does Tracking on the Iridium Extreme Cost?

Basic tracking for the Iridium Extreme starts at $29.95 per month. This includes approximately 220 position reports per month (about 7 per day, or about once every 3 hours). The frequency of the position reports can increase, but each additional position report will incur an overage fee.

There is a one-time new account setup fee of $59 that goes towards the configuration of your web-based tracking account, setting up tracking on your Iridium phone, and making sure your phone is correctly relaying position reports.

Note: pricing good as of publication of this post. Please contact us for the most up-to-date pricing info for any of our products or services.

Needing Tracking for Your Iridium Extreme?

Feel free to contact us to learn more about tracking for the Iridium Extreme or to set up your Iridium Extreme tracking account.

Satellite Weather GRIB Files On Android Devices

  
  
  

SailGRIB Satellite Weather for AndroidOver the years, XGate has teamed up with a number of third-party GRIB retrievers and viewers to help deliver GRIB weather files over satellite connections. Until now, all of these programs (WeatherNet, iNavX, Weather4D, WeatherTrack, etc) have been for Windows, Mac, or iOS.  

But we’re happy to announce that there is a great new option for Android: SailGrib! 

SailGrib is a GRIB retriever and viewer all in one. Using SailGrib in conjunction with XGate satellite email service will allow you to retrieve GRIB files through email using XGate and then view them right in SailGrib using their Android app. 

SailGrib Features

SailGrib is a handy little app that goes beyond simple GRIB files. Here are a few of the features sailors find most useful:

SailGrib Over Satellite

XGate satellite email serviceWe’ve already mentioned it, but we’ll do it again - using SailGrib with XGate means that you aren’t tied to land to get your weather files. Using leading-edge compression, XGate allows you to download your GRIB files over satellite connections that are very, very slow by land standards. XGate works with any IP-based satellite phone (which is the vast majority of them) so you can get your weather anywhere you can get satellite reception.   

SailGrib "talks" to XGate directly by spooling the GRIB request to the XGate outgoing email queue (through SMTP).

Fully Featured Weather Info

SailGrib Satellite GRIB WeatherThe weather information that comes through with SailGrib is pretty extensive: colored wind barbs, isobars with low and high values highlighted, precipitation map (rain and snow), cloud cover map, air temperature map, significant wave height map, mean wave direction and period arrows, and CAPE map. 

You can also loop through time, allowing you to see weather movement and make decisions based on mobile patterns. 

SailGrib can retrieve worldwide oceanic and European tidal currents, making it a truly robust resource for weather information around the world. 

You can see SailGrib in the Google Play store here

SailGrib WR

SailGrib Weather Routing calculates the fastest sailing route to your destination with a powerful method based on the isochrones method. An isochrone is a curve representing the points that a sailboat can reach in a given time. This curve depends primarily on the forecasted wind and currents plus the boat speed for that wind. The boat speed is derived from polar curves that represent the speed of the boat for a given wind speed and angle. We optimize the route calculating all the effects of the current on your boat as long as a current GRIB file is loaded. 

All the calculations are done directly on your device, so you don’t need to consume any satellite airtime to get your sailing route. 

SailGrib WR Features

SailGrib WR

Once you get your GRIB files into SailGrib WR, you can create the route to your destination on a map as well as by adding waypoints along your route. 

  • Set parameters by hand or automatically to specifically calibrate your passage.
  • Specify upwind and downwind speed limits for low and strong winds
  • Specify a minimum upwind angle for comfort while cruising
  • Specify a night efficiency loss 
  • For cruisers, use mixed routing: decide when to start the engine and specify your motoring speed.
  • Create a KML file and a GPX file of the best route
  • Create an Excel file of your roadbook
  • Choose to display best route courses, isochrones, isochrone segments on the map
  • Go through time and overlay the boat with the weather forecast. 

 You can see the SailGrib WR app in the Google Play store here.

SailGrib WR Satellite Weather

 

 

 

All Posts