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SOTAwatch spotting via SMS is working now


#1

despite the database outage, SOTAwatch spotting via SMS is working now according to my test spot

73, Barry N1EU


#2

I made few attempts to use SOTA SMS spotting on January 29, 2018, and was unable to spot myself. When I reviewed my SMS messages later, it was my fault - I missed ‘$’ at the beginning of my SMSs.


#3

4 messages received at

Sun Jan 28 23:40:58 2018:
Sun Jan 28 23:59:35 2018:
Mon Jan 29 00:39:16 2018:
Mon Jan 29 00:45:05 2018:

All had malformed content and were dropped as invalid.


#4

I did a little checking before replying, and then my suspicion was confirmed by Andy’s reply. You did it wrong. I rely exclusively on SMS for spotting, though I have been aided in an AZ by fellow activators with smart phones at times.

SMS is a wonderful tool for those of us who refuse to get a smart phone, but it does require you to form your own text spot - and it DEMANDS following the format rules precisely. A few of which are not at all obvious, learned by me through trial and error testing after failures.

As such, I believe I have compiled the most authoritative SOTA SMS Manual ever written. Would anyone like a copy? It is buried here on the Reflector somewhere, but it doesn’t seem to get much attention.

Glenn AB3TQ


#5

Yes Please!


#6

I’ll see about getting that doc on the SOTA website with the rules and FAQs.


#7

Yes please!


#8

How do we find it? Or please email me at chris.caviezel.fire@gmail.com I have capabilities for all forms of spotting. By app, SMS, Inreach, APRS, asking for a SPOT. I believe that spotting is important if for no other reason it shows activity and people know you are out there.


#9

I would like to see this posted to the FAQ, but for now I will just point to it again. Any comments or updates always welcomed.

http://reflector.sota.org.uk/t/sota-sms-format-help-please/14927/5?u=ab3tq

Glenn AB3TQ
Good on QRZ


#10

It’s in the queue of things to be uploaded on to the FAQ Glenn.


#11

And now it’s published…

http://www.sota.org.uk/Joining-In/SOTA-SMS-Format

@AB3TQ


#12

Someone following this thread contacted me and indicated it might be a good idea to at least mention the inReach two way satellite communications devices in my SMS Manual compilation (now listed in the FAQ). I had sort of heard the name (inReach) before, but had never actually paid any attention to it. I am not even sure what I would say about it. I don’t have one.

There are subscription charges for satellite access through the inReach, but if you really need to send a text message when cell service is totally out of the question, an inReach will do it. There are also a few other things it can do, but that satellite text capability is the core feature…

Supposedly it can be linked to SOTA alerting and spotting, but I know no details about how that might work. If this sounds interesting to anyone, there is a lot of information on the web.

Is there anyone using one of these that would like to tell us a bit about how they make use of it?


#13

I have used an inReach frequently to spot.

Absolutely fabulous device and couldn’t imagine going into the wilderness without one!

Paul


#14

Support for InReach and Iridium based devices has been available since 2015. Yes there is a subscription cost to use the satellites but you can spot from anywhere on earth. For my home rolled Iridium system it takes under 25secs on average to get a spot via satellite to Sotawatch.


#16

I use an Android smart phone and iOS/Apple has APPs as well. In my contacts/directory/phone-book or notepad, I create one entry for: SOTA SMS
It has a working example of a Spot that I have tested as well as some other usage notes.
This way I have less to remember. I use raw SMS or RRT (Rucksack Radio Tool) which has a form that can send SOTA formatted SMS texts.
APRS2SOTA is another option that I recently added by my bag of tools. It also has an entry with notes in my phone’s directory.

73, Bruce W2SE