inReach SE, will the screen do it?

Ben Ellison

Ben Ellison

Panbo editor, publisher & chief bottlewasher from 4/2005 until 8/2018, and now pleased to have Ben Stein as a very able publisher, webmaster, and editing colleague. Please don't regard him as an "expert"; he's getting quite old and thinks that "fadiddling fumble-putz" is a more accurate description.

10 Responses

  1. Ben Ellison Ben Ellison says:

    Thanks to those who let me know that these comments were messed up, as well opening paragraph for a while.
    Totally weird that I would write about beyond-cellular communications and then find myself up a creek (really) without a decent connection. Hopefully am online now and these comments are working. Let’s see….

  2. Ben Ellison Ben Ellison says:

    So yet another technical glitch this morning is the vanishing of a comment I posted shortly after publishing this entry. I wanted to point out to early readers that I had corrected a mistake in the SE battery life. It is indeed 100 hours with 10-minute tracking enabled, not the 10 hours first stated.
    It was inReach developer Chip Noble who pointed out my error and I also linked to his blog entry where he’s seeking donations for his “Summit for Someone” hike up Mt. Whitney. It sounds like a very worthy event but Chip is adding a raffle to further encourage donations and the first prize will be the first inReach SE to be ready for retail sales (in a few weeks):

  3. Kees says:

    Wow, that looks impressive. This fixes the three main complaints I have with my 2nd Gen Spot (which I guess you had with the original DeLorme as well):
    – Battery life => External power
    – Unsure whether it is tracking => Display
    – Bluetooth connection flaky => Display + buttons
    I want one!

  4. Mike B says:

    Last week I used my REI rebate to purchase the original inReach at REI and they offered a $50 rebate from DeLorme. I joked they must be wanting to get rid of them. So, I got it for free plus $50 back. An hour later I flip through a magazine and see the ad for this. Doesn’t it figure. Of course the original works fine but this new package has a lot to recommend it.

  5. Tom Brady says:

    Do you think Delorme could be successful if they added weather as one of the features of InReach? You could sign up for a specific forecast zone and have text sent whenever it is updated.
    Tom Brady

  6. Ben Ellison Ben Ellison says:

    Hi Tom,
    First let me say that I’m not sure that inReach isn’t successful as is, or was before SE. I certainly can’t think of a product that’s won so many innovation awards in the marine and outdoor worlds.
    But I have had the experience of trying to explain the system in person at places like TrawlerFest and it seemed like a lot of eyes glazed over after a while. What with the handheld, the apps, the Explore and Map Share web sites, it’s complicated. That’s why I think the color screen with easy-to-understand icons is going to help sell inReach even if there’s not all that much difference in what the system can do for a boater.
    And, yes, a weather feature would also help. There’s not enough bandwidth with Iridium Short Burst Data (SBD) to do a lot but because DeLorme controls both the server and apps/handheld side they could maximize what’s possible. Plus the server can know where you are. I do believe that DeLorme is considering this and another reason I’m so bullish on inReach is the company’s apparent deep commitment to the system.

  7. Alison says:

    This is definitely an impressive gadget with some great improvements. I love the super long battery life, a major plus. This seems like something every boater should have with them for so many reasons. I personally don’t think the price is too bad considering all you are getting.

  8. Taniwha says:

    Just a note about their international pricing. If you look through their website it says that the rates are only for US & Europe residents. Aus, NZ, & Indonesian residents have a link to another website (not sure what anyone else does).
    The Aus, NZ, & Indo rates are significantly more expensive.
    Here are some examples (the A$ is about 1:1 with the US$):
    The “Expedition” package (their top end I suppose aimed at global cruising people):
    120 messages/mnth included
    25c/msg over 120
    unlimited tracking points included
    40 messages/mnth included
    50c/msg over 40
    600 tracking points included
    15c/tracking point over 600
    It looks like a really bad deal for AUs/NZ customers.
    If you’re truly using it as a means to keep in touch with people whilst cruising, then it’s potentially going to be significantly more expensive than the US/Europe subscription.
    Given that it’s supposed to be a global service, and is mostly web & Iridium based, I can’t see where any incremental subscription cost would come from just for Aus & NZ customers.
    Smells like a rip-off, which is a shame since it looks like a good service.
    I’d be interested in hearing what De Lorme has to say about that.

  9. Ben Ellison Ben Ellison says:

    DeLorme is offering a new “Freedom” plan for the inReach that looks like a good deal to me. For an annual fee of $25 you can suspend or change service plans every month if you want. The monthly Freedom fees are slightly higher than the annual equivalent, but it still looks like a money saver for a seasonal boater, even one who goes on a beyond-cellular adventure once in while during the off season. Details here:

  10. Ben Ellison Ben Ellison says:

    DeLorme has new model inReach Explorer that’s quite like the SE but with added sensors for navigation and the ability to download routes from the owner’s inReach web site:
    Also, OCENS just announced a new SpotCast weather service that can send compact forecasts to the inReachSE and Explorer:

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