Iridium trackers – getting real

[This post will get out of date quickly. However the respective device pages (under the "Devices" menu) will be updated regularly with the latest specifications and reviews.]

A clutch of new,  Iridium based trackers is now starting to ship. Last week we saw DeLorme ship their inReach units, while this week Yellowbrick in the UK will ship their YB3 tracker. The Cyberlink units are  expected  before the end of the year. We’ll do our best to keep our respective “device pages” up to date with links to the manufacturers’ latest information, as well as to any substantial product reviews and industry comment.

Here is our overview of the different approaches taken by these manufacturers:
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inReach subscription plans released

[Update 22 Nov 2011 - Yellowbrick has revised its pricing [link] to be more flexible, separating the core subscription service from “tracking and message credits”, as well as elimination the 12 months mandatory subscription. The comparison below, therefore,  is no longer current]

DeLorme released its subscription pricing today in typical fashion. Chip Noble posted the rates to the company blog while hiking to Grand Teton in Wyoming. No real surprises in the pricing, although for continuous tracking, they contrast with Yellowbrick’s charges.

The standard “Safety Plan” does not include tracking, but charges $0.25 per tracking report. So reporting a position twice a day would come to around $25 for a month. This compares to Yellowbrick’s charge of 14GBP ($21). In other words, pretty close.

The picture changes when requiring continuous tracking. DeLorme, charges $24.95 per month for unlimited tracking (max rate every 10 mins), while Yellow Brick charges 150 GBP ($225) per month for position reports every 15 minutes, almost 10 times as much!