Interesting new communication technology

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    Vincent Vilcinskas
    BPL Member


    Brad Rogers
    BPL Member


    Locale: Southeast Tennessee

    Interesting. It uses the iridium network. I didn’t see a weight, but maybe I missed it.

    Bruce Tolley
    BPL Member


    Locale: San Francisco Bay Area

    Maybe this device prompted Garmin to launch the Inreach Mini early.

    Michael Gillenwater
    BPL Member


    Locale: Seattle area

    There seems to all the sudden be a number of these on kickstarter, etc. choices will abound and prices should drop.

    Rex Sanders
    BPL Member


    Choice is good. Kickstarter projects that actually deliver and turn into viable products even better. Caveat emptor.


    • No SOS button on the Bivystick means your phone and the Bivystick app and the Bluetooth link to the Bivystick cannot fail in an emergency. Not sure I like those odds.
    • “We don’t care where you stick it.” — as long as you don’t care if it works. Physics says it still needs a clear view of the sky to chat with satellites. Not a responsible product claim.
    • “… also recharge your phone 2-3 times.” Nice feature – until you run down the BivyStick battery and can’t send SOS. How do they warn you or prevent that from happening? Blinking LEDs are easy to overlook until it’s too late.
    • Buy airtime credits in advance – only. Some subscription plans for other devices are pretty flexible, with less worry about running out of credits in the middle of a trip.
    • Credits require a “small fee” to keep past 30 days, then expire at 60 days – not exactly consumer friendly.
    • No pricing on credits, just “affordable.” To whom?
    • GearJunkie: “The 6,000-mAh internal battery provides enough juice for a weekend escape.” So you’ll need a big external battery for longer trips?
    • Waterproof? Dustproof? Shock-resistant?
    • Weight?
    • A serious pain point for similar devices is customer service. See many Spot disgruntled customer stories for example. Very hard to evaluate without previous devices or current experience.

    Hope they succeed, I’ll wait for real-world reviews.

    — Rex

    John S.
    BPL Member


    I’ll guess a weight of 3-4 oz, with that 6000 mah battery.

    michael adamski
    BPL Member


    7 ounces. From the Kickstarter:

    Rex Sanders
    BPL Member


    So 0.5 ounce lighter than a full-sized inReach SE+ / Explorer, 2.8 ounces heavier than inReach Mini, but cheaper to buy, integrated with Bivy app, shorter battery life, fewer standalone capabilities, pay-as-you-go data of unknown cost “More Details About Data Coming Soon” (pig, meet poke). Interesting trade-offs.

    I think the Bivystick weight wasn’t listed at first, maybe updating their Kickstarter page.

    Remember, if Bivy folds or stops supporting satellite service, your Bivystick becomes a very expensive, relatively heavy USB battery. For better or worse, Spot, inReach, and a few others have longer track records.

    — Rex

    John S.
    BPL Member


    I guess I was only half right. Holy Shiitake that is heavy ; )

    Jerry Adams
    BPL Member


    Locale: Oregon and Washington

    my Anker 10,000 battery weighs 8 ounces

    if you could use the bivystick as a satellite communicator and it could charge your phone once, that might be a good option

    I’m not really into kickstarter “products” unless it’s charitable.  Maybe this will really become a product some day.

    Isn’t the inreach mini 3 ounces?  That seems like a better product.

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