[aprssig] Quick APRS hardware survey (APRS Hotspot)

Steve Dimse steve at dimse.com
Thu Jun 22 15:14:36 CDT 2017


> On Jun 22, 2017, at 10:41 AM, Robert Bruninga <bruninga at usna.edu> wrote:
> 
> I am really impressed with what the OUTERNET people did.  The difference is
> that their "radio" montors the INMARSAT downlinks (anywhere on earth) and
> serve up the content (which includes an APRS channel).
> See http://aprs.org/outnet.html
> 
I loved the idea when I heard of it, but it is one of those groups that keeps looking worse the the longer and harder you look.

They have downgraded data rate once, and they are about to downgrade again to save money. They've lost their grants and failed to attract an NGO or other user to sponsor their INMARSAT feeds, and are now living hand-to-mouth off of hardware sales.

They haven't fulfilled a bunch of Kickstarter orders, and have left a long trail of disgruntled users of abandoned hardware platforms. If you read through their forum you will find a lot of unhappy people. I gave up after they abandoned the Pi as a supported platform and moved to the CHiP. I ordered a couple direct because at the time they outernet did not have them, only to find out that they were only supporting the old version they sold, even though they were backordered for months. I gave my gear away.

So before anyone spends money with them be aware there is a good chance they will fold, and even if they don't they will likely abandon hardware designs again so expect ongoing expenses if you want to play in their sandbox.

Steve K4HG


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