Spot Tracker disabled

Submitted: Thursday, Jun 27, 2019 at 14:09
ThreadID: 138605 Views:1918 Replies:7 FollowUps:15
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I have a Spot tracker purchased a few years ago but hasn't been activated in a while , I went to activate and was unable to do so , after an exhaustive chat with sales support they said could no re activate older models , only new models are able to be activated , I have an account , they know my details they did not inform me that older models could not be activated was offered a $25 credit towards new one ( an insult) I now have a very expensive piece of junk , I know people who have activated Spots and they were not aware of this , so if you have a spot that is more than couple of years old beware , if you de avtivate it it is useless, appalling customer service
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Reply By: Member - William B (The Shire) - Thursday, Jun 27, 2019 at 14:15

Thursday, Jun 27, 2019 at 14:15
Bugga.
That only applies to re activation after a period of not being activated??
If you keep it activated e.g.. pay your yearly fee it is still ok?
William
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Follow Up By: Frank P (NSW) - Thursday, Jun 27, 2019 at 14:21

Thursday, Jun 27, 2019 at 14:21
"If you keep it activated e.g.. pay your yearly fee it is still ok?"

That has been my experience, William.

Cheers
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Follow Up By: Philip O1 - Thursday, Jun 27, 2019 at 14:26

Thursday, Jun 27, 2019 at 14:26
That seems to be the case , however you would need to check with them , however given they arent notifying people about de activation and the negative comments on the internet around their business practices wouldn't put anything past them
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Reply By: Frank P (NSW) - Thursday, Jun 27, 2019 at 14:20

Thursday, Jun 27, 2019 at 14:20
I have an old gen 1 Spot tracker that has remained activated since day 1 in about 2009. Considering that, it is difficult to understand why an existing old one, with an associated account, cannot be reactivated.

Thanks for the heads-up. I will make sure mine stays activated.

Cheers
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Follow Up By: Member - William B (The Shire) - Thursday, Jun 27, 2019 at 14:29

Thursday, Jun 27, 2019 at 14:29
I've had mine for ages as well and always had it activated. Ill check every thing works ok when I get home to be sure.
I cannot see why it would be hard to re activate.
Sounds like a completely commercial decision.
William
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Reply By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Thursday, Jun 27, 2019 at 15:16

Thursday, Jun 27, 2019 at 15:16
Hi Philip

You have not told us what model of SPOT you own and just how long you have had it?

According to their website, it must be an old SPOT 1, in what case must be 6 years old or older.

When we buy any product, it will depreciate like any product and can not relate to current marker value.

You also quoted "if you have a spot that is more than couple of years old beware , if you de avtivate it it is useless, appalling customer service"

You have give wrong information here, as I have had my SPOT3 for 3 years, so your statement of a couple of years old is very misleading.

I am not sure when the SPOT2 was release, but according the the SPOT website they are still able to be supported.

As for saying that you have expensive piece of junk, a new SPOT3 can be purchased for as little as $174, right here in Australia, white is almost half the price of a PLB that will only have a life of 6-10 years depending on what brand you have.

Sorry to hear the situation you are in, but for cheap peace of mind, $174 in not dear in todays toys we buy for our four wheel drives and caravans and campers.



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Follow Up By: Frank P (NSW) - Thursday, Jun 27, 2019 at 17:48

Thursday, Jun 27, 2019 at 17:48
Not sure I agree with the tenor of your post, Stephen.

Must we throw out, or be forced to throw out, a perfectly serviceable item just because it is old?

I can understand and accept loss of support in terms of repair and spare parts (if those were ever economically available.) But that is not the case here, the OP's unit is serviceable (presumably).

The fact that my 9 year old Spot 1 still works perfectly indicates that the old versions remain compatible with Spot's systems. AFAIK the only difference in technology between the old units and later ones is Bluetooth connectivity and the ability to send and receive text messages.

The old units continue to share the SOS, non-life-threatening Help, I'm OK and tracking functions that the newer units use, so if the old unit is in working order, what is Spot's problem? It's just a Spot unit without the "bling". It makes no sense that activation be denied, especially given that old units that remain activated are still supported by the ground technology and especially given that the OP says he has an account that is associated with the old device?

It is not logical, is wasteful, causes needless expense to the user and to me smacks of corporate greed.

But sadly, should any of this be communicated to the Big Business behind Spot, I doubt any of it will ring true. Profit is far more important.

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Follow Up By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Thursday, Jun 27, 2019 at 19:06

Thursday, Jun 27, 2019 at 19:06
Frank,.

No we should not have throw away a product that is in working order, but we must ask, why has SPOT done this?

There must be a reason why they have done this and one that we will never know.

The point I was making that $174 is not a big expense for something that could save your life, that will give you years of peace of mind.
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Follow Up By: Philip O1 - Thursday, Jun 27, 2019 at 21:57

Thursday, Jun 27, 2019 at 21:57
I have a Spot Connect purchased in 2014, according to the Chat I had with them today:

as of April 4, 2019 we are no longer accepting new activations,
upgrades or ESN swaps for:
-Spot Connect
-Spot HUG
-Spot DeLorme Communicator

They will only support SPOT Trace,
SPOT Gen 3, and SPOT X 2-way messneger.

My point is that my Spot Connect would still work if they allowed it to be connected to the network there are plenty of older ones connected that work fine , they seem to be forcing people to upgrade for no reason other than to sell new units and therefore boost profits . The analogy would be Apple disconnecting iPhones after 5 years even though they could still make calls ( software would be old but basic functionality still there same as my Spot Connect)

Whilst PLB and Spot are similar purchase price PLB costs nothing for annual connection last time I looked Spot was around USD200pa my PERSONAL opinion is that I prefer emergency monitoring and response in Australia , but each to their own. I accept that the Spot tracking is a handy feature that PLB does not offer, I have elected for PLB plus Satphone annual costs are lower than Spot , but as I say each to their own.

Thats all I will have to say

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Follow Up By: Frank P (NSW) - Thursday, Jun 27, 2019 at 22:12

Thursday, Jun 27, 2019 at 22:12
If they cut me off I will abandon them and not go back. There are alternatives.
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Follow Up By: Member - nickb "boab" - Friday, Jun 28, 2019 at 10:14

Friday, Jun 28, 2019 at 10:14
Phillip o1 : I think you are pretty well spot on with your thoughts comments
I had a similar situation with Garmin Topo.. when you fork out $$$ you expect it to work or not to be out of date after a number of years .
From what I have seen on forums and reviews The Spot was nothing to rave about just the live tracking function and you like someone in Australia looking after you rather than relying on numerous agencies /overseas .
Cheers
Cheers Nick b
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Reply By: Member - John - Thursday, Jun 27, 2019 at 18:32

Thursday, Jun 27, 2019 at 18:32
I to have an early SPOT, have kept it activated but have been expecting an email stating not supported after pick a date......... just like computors, no support after a set date and forcing one to buy a new item, not happy with this modus operandi but not much we can do about it
John and Jan

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Follow Up By: Member - 105Tvan - Sunday, Jun 30, 2019 at 16:51

Sunday, Jun 30, 2019 at 16:51
The same thing is happening with mobile phones.
The CDMA phone system was unbeatable.
No not for the Phone Companies who tell us we have to have latest and greatest.
No good if it only works in populated areas.
Only way to beat them is start your own Company and take away all their customers. I know I can't do it, maybe a chat with Dick Smith might help.
Robert
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Reply By: Member - nickb "boab" - Friday, Jun 28, 2019 at 10:20

Friday, Jun 28, 2019 at 10:20
Has anyone here ever been saved or had the need to use the emergency response of the spot
If so how did they find it works ?
I would imagine that most people just use it for their live tracking as I've never read about anyone using the emergency side of this gadget ??
Cheers Nick b
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Reply By: Member - nickb "boab" - Sunday, Jun 30, 2019 at 18:53

Sunday, Jun 30, 2019 at 18:53
Youtube review plb

Stefan alloffroad review has some interesting point to mention .
Cheers Nick b
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Follow Up By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Sunday, Jun 30, 2019 at 19:50

Sunday, Jun 30, 2019 at 19:50
Hi Nick

The link you posted is exactly what I always push here on EO.....

I I personally carry what he had, a SPOT3, PLB and a Satellite Phone.

You will also note he did not knock the SPOT and he takes it when bushwalking.

One thing he did not say is battery life for the SPOT.

They recommend lithium AAA batteries and used every day, they were still functioning after 7 weeks on our Cape York trip last year. Another important thing he did not mention, the unit will not just die when the batteries are going flat.

A red light will flash to advise you that it is time to replace the batteries, and will still function for a day or more, giving you ample to to replace the batteries.


Cheers



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Follow Up By: Member - ACD 1 - Sunday, Jun 30, 2019 at 20:05

Sunday, Jun 30, 2019 at 20:05
I agree with Stephen and also carry PLB, Satellite Phone, HF Radio and I have just added a Spot 3 for my latest CSR trip.

I'm still of the PLB as the locator and the Spot 3 for tracking mindset - but the jury is still out.

Cheers

Anthony
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Follow Up By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Sunday, Jun 30, 2019 at 21:32

Sunday, Jun 30, 2019 at 21:32
Hi Anthony

My old age is showing......lol

Yes I also still have in the car a HF radio


Cheers


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Follow Up By: Member - nickb "boab" - Tuesday, Jul 02, 2019 at 20:34

Tuesday, Jul 02, 2019 at 20:34
maybe for some interest >How to Choose a Personal Locator Beacon >outdoor gear lab

PLB
Cheers Nick b
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Follow Up By: Sigmund - Friday, Jul 12, 2019 at 04:28

Friday, Jul 12, 2019 at 04:28
It's a good piece.

To add ...

Spot X isn't available here.

Closer to the equator and in mountainous terrain, Iridium encounters call handover limitations and some adventurers have canned it.
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Reply By: Baz - The Landy - Wednesday, Jul 03, 2019 at 18:29

Wednesday, Jul 03, 2019 at 18:29
Worth noting...

The renewal for my Spot, which was due a couple of days ago and includes tracking was US$247 (AU$355).

The ‘I am not renewing at that price was US$100 (AU$140)’. A reduction of circa 60%.

Same thing happened last year...

We don’t need tracking via Spot these days, so didn’t renew even at that price as we are well covered for comms and emergency comms.

The bottom line, if using Spot, don’t accept ‘rack’ price.

Cheers, Baz - The Landy
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