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Spot X Issue

I’ve used a Spot tracker since 2013 and have been a big fan of the device. It allows my wife to follow my travels when she wants, so I can go travel when I want.

In 2019 I thought that it would be a great idea to upgrade to the new SpotX especially since my Gen 3 was pretty beatup from years of travel. My thinking was that the SpotX would allow me to send a detailed message in the event of an “emergency,” so as not to alarm my wife if I happened to activate the device to get assistance for another person that had an accident etc.

I purchased the device and got it set up, but after 3,500 miles of riding it never quite worked properly. I used it on several trips, and it would regularly get a call from my wife stating that it stopped tracking for several hours and then began tracking for a brief period, only to stop again. I called Spot customer service and was put in contact with a tech person. They were very concerned with getting the issue resolved and worked with me for several days to determine the root cause. Eventually they had a different tech call and explain that they had been having issues with BMW motorcycles and the SpotX device. Per the tech, on some BMW bikes the engine produces a vibration or harmonic that causes the Spot X to malfunction. I was skeptical, and really annoyed because they had me trying different procedures to get the unit to work properly and they were aware of the BMW issue. In the end I was able to return the SpotX and they gave me a new Spot Gen 3 tracker and added additional subscription time to my contract. The new unit works perfectly. So, if you’re interested in upgrading to the SpotX, you may want to wait until the BMW engine glitch is resolved.
 

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@GrayBeard, when you reactivate, is there a fee for that? Has anyone found the break even point for keeping it active all year vs activation a couple or three times a year?

And, I have frequently posted that I hate the Garmin user interface and hard-to-read screen on my zumo 665, and Garmin's reluctance to listen to users for software improvements or allow for customization like on your smart phone...do those frustrations exist for you on either of the inreach units?

Thanks
No fees for deactivating and reactivating. Just start paying the monthly service again.

I've never used the GPS display on the Inreach so can't comment on it's usability or map quality. The inReach web site is very easy to set up, use, and publish to your admiring fans who follow you on your adventures.

IMO, the ability to exchange text messages makes it a game changer over the SPOT. Now, it is a quirky interface for typing out text messages but for those I send practically every day on my rides, I have canned messages I can select and send.
 
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