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Kat
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PostTue Sep 18, 2018 12:35 pm 
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Yep great advice.  I did test minimally at the house prior to 1st trip.  Also, the whole month of Sep I set aside for testing the Inreach vs my sat phone for my needs, taking both on all trips.

I did get 2 out of 3 texts to send quickly yesterday on a hike, preset/quick text from the Inreach.  The 3rd text I had composed on my cell phone using Earthmate did not send, so I ended up deleting it.  Now I believe it is something buggered up with the Earthmate app on my Samsung S7 phone.
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moonspots
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PostSun Sep 30, 2018 8:36 am 
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Kat wrote:
I did test minimally at the house prior to 1st trip.  Also, the whole month of Sep I set aside for testing the Inreach vs my sat phone for my needs, taking both on all trips.

Well, what is your opinion now? I'm considering a gadget like this, so like to read what current users think.

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"Out, OUT you demons of Stupidity"! - St Dogbert, patron Saint of Technology
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pasayten
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PostSun Sep 30, 2018 8:44 am 
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moonspots wrote:
Well, what is your opinion now? I'm considering a gadget like this, so like to read what current users think.

I have used the inRaech Mini on two trips now...   Pasayten near Remmel Lake and Wing Lake in North Cascades. All message text both sent and received got thru and weather reporting worked fine.   Could even send and receive inside the tent.   Glad I got the unit!

https://share.garmin.com/pasayten

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Riverside Laker
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PostSun Sep 30, 2018 11:40 am 
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I've only played with it around home, so not sure how well it communicates while under the tree canopy. what I've used is pretty nice though. As a navigation device, it's poor (seems to only work with the phone), so I'd rather use Gaia or a hiking GPSr. You need to watch battery life, but I think I'll just turn it on when needed, and not leave it on all the time.
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Kat
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PostSun Sep 30, 2018 4:14 pm 
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moonspots wrote:
Well, what is your opinion now? I'm considering a gadget like this, so like to read what current users think.

I'm pretty darned sure the problem I am having with the Earthmate app/Inreach interface is quite rare.  I really like the weather report feature on the Inreach. However, I will also say it will be very hard to give up the sat phone's real-time communication. I am only considering doing the switch to save money.

Haven't actually decided yet what I'm going to do...
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moonspots
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PostMon Oct 01, 2018 5:01 am 
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Kat wrote:
I'm pretty darned sure the problem I am having with the Earthmate app/Inreach interface is quite rare.  I really like the weather report feature on the Inreach. However, I will also say it will be very hard to give up the sat phone's real-time communication.

The app/InReach connectivity seems to be the entire source of problem you've decided? Once in a while, or just with your phone? What type of smartphone - IOS or Android? Have you worked with InReach tech support? And someone else mentioned that the battery life seems to be quite low, are they replaceable batteries or internal rechargeable only? Maybe that's when paired with a phone and powering bluetooth as well as GPSr circuitry.

I'm going to have to research this further, but always like to hear what current users have to say. So far though, everywhere I've been has either been within cellphone range, or if not, then I've been with a guide who has satphone, but eventually I'll wander off on my own somewhere. Thanks, all.

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Kat
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PostMon Oct 01, 2018 5:24 am 
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moonspots wrote:
The app/InReach connectivity seems to be the entire source of problem you've decided?

Yes.

moonspots wrote:
Once in a while, or just with your phone?

Once an Earthmate message gets "stuck" it seems to stop any other messages from sending until I delete the "stuck" message - but I would have to do a little more testing to see if I can consistently replicate this exact scenario to be 100% sure on this, I am about 90% sure subjectively speaking.

moonspots wrote:
What type of smartphone - IOS or Android?

I mentioned earlier in the thread that I have a Samsung S7 which is an Android.

moonspots wrote:
Have you worked with InReach tech support

No.  Bit hard to do that out in the field smile.gif I suppose I could have reached out to obtain suggestions, but I'm in tech and wanted to do some of my own troubleshooting to narrow down scenario causing failure.  Also, my experience with calling manufacturer tech in general hasn't been too good.

re: battery life
I've only been turning on when wanting to send text, check weather or incoming texts so that way the (internal rechargeable only) battery seems to last for days.  I presume if you leave it on all the time while hiking to generate the online map for loved ones to follow, it would drawn down faster.
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Brian Curtis
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PostMon Oct 01, 2018 5:25 am 
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Kat wrote:
However, I will also say it will be very hard to give up the sat phone's real-time communication. I am only considering doing the switch to save money. 

One huge advantage of the InReach is that its location can be pinged remotely so if you are overdue and incapacitated someone can query your unit to determine your location. Of course this won't work if the battery is dead. I like to have my InReach in tracking mode so my location is always known, but that requires a more expensive monthly plan.

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that elitist from silverdale wanted to tell me that all carnes are bad--Studebaker Hoch
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pasayten
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PostMon Oct 01, 2018 5:32 am 
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Battery is internal rechargeable... life is great...   Unit can also be put in "extended track" mode to conserve battery if you want to leave it on n track mode.    :-)

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moonspots
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Happy Curmudgeon
PostTue Oct 02, 2018 5:09 am 
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Kat wrote:
I mentioned earlier in the thread that I have a Samsung S7 which is an Android.

I missed (or forgot) that point. And I was afraid of that - I have a Samsung S8, and am not at all impressed with it. I generally don't like it, or the S5 that it replaced. And thank you for the replies on my other questions.

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"Out, OUT you demons of Stupidity"! - St Dogbert, patron Saint of Technology
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Kat
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PostTue Oct 02, 2018 5:15 am 
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Brian also mentioned an excellent point above, that finding you in an emergency situation if you have left the Inreach unit on and tracking would be a lot easier.  Assuming you've left your Inreach URL with someone who can give it to SAR.
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Windstorm
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PostTue Oct 02, 2018 8:58 am 
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Kat wrote:
Brian also mentioned an excellent point above...

Brian Curtis wrote:
One huge advantage of the InReach is that its location can be pinged remotely so if you are overdue and incapacitated someone can query your unit to determine your location. Of course this won't work if the battery is dead. I like to have my InReach in tracking mode so my location is always known, but that requires a more expensive monthly plan.

If I'm reading this correctly, someone back home can send a message and get your location, even if you don't have tracking turned on? If true, that would be a very powerful tool for SAR and could be a deciding factor in whether I eventually get an InReach. I wouldn't want to pay extra for a plan with tracking, but would be happy to pay the fee if someone at home (or SAR) pinged the device to figure out my location if I was overdue.
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pasayten
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PostTue Oct 02, 2018 10:31 am 
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Windstorm wrote:
If I'm reading this correctly, someone back home can send a message and get your location, even if you don't have tracking turned on? If true, that would be a very powerful tool for SAR and could be a deciding factor in whether I eventually get an InReach. I wouldn't want to pay extra for a plan with tracking, but would be happy to pay the fee if someone at home (or SAR) pinged the device to figure out my location if I was overdue.

Thru the inReach Mapshare program there is an option to "Locate"...   The requirement is that the unit must be turned on and have a decent clear view of the sky.  The unit does not need to be in "tracking" mode...   The location returned will be a blue triangle style arrowhead...

https://share.garmin.com/pasayten

"Request the location from Ray Peterson.

Locate requires the inReach to be powered on and have a clear view of the sky. You may have to wait up to 20 minutes for a response. Your locate request will try for up to five days."

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Kat
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PostTue Oct 02, 2018 11:04 am 
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Good to know you don't have to leave it in tracking mode to be located, altho someone still needs to know the url I would presume.  So battery usage is important, I wonder how much it would get sucked down if left on 12 hrs a day or more.
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pasayten
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PostTue Oct 02, 2018 11:09 am 
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With tracking off and bluetooth off a pretty long time...  Would be over the 20 day option...

https://www8.garmin.com/manuals/webhelp/inreachmini/EN-US/GUID-26D02F01-8090-4D52-B466-D93B670E898F.html

Battery Information
The actual battery life depends on your device settings, such as the tracking and message checking intervals.

Battery Life

Up to 30 hr.

10-minute tracking send interval and 1-second log interval


Up to 50 hr.

Default mode with 10-minute tracking send interval and 5-minute log interval


Up to 20 days

Extended tracking mode with 30-minute tracking send interval


Up to 1 yr.

Turned off

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