UK Globalstar achieves 20,000 SPOT sales milestone
Globalstar Europe Satellite Services Ltd, leader in satellite messaging and emergency notification technologies, has announced that UK specialist wireless and satellite technology reseller, Global Telesat Communications (GTC), a subsidiary of Orbsat Corp, has achieved the landmark milestone of 20,000 SPOT device sales.
This 20,000 total represents aggregated sales of SPOT Gen4, SPOT X, SPOT Trace, and earlier generations of SPOT. Since the device family’s initial launch in 2007, SPOT has been enthusiastically embraced by adventure travellers and sportspeople, including enthusiasts of leisure marine, motorcycling, hiking, paragliding and other forms of free flight, among other high-octane and high-adrenaline activities.
“Awareness of the value of satellite tracking has increased dramatically in the last few years and demand has never been higher,” comments David Phipps, CEO of Global Operations of Orbsat Corp, and Managing Director of GTC. “SPOT devices have continued to be one of the most widely adopted solutions for individuals involved in adventure sports, but thanks to a greater awareness of the benefits of satellite tracking combined with the IoT, organisations of all kinds are now deploying this technology to safeguard staff and improve their operations.”
Growing SPOT deployment for lone worker safety
SPOT has most notably been deployed by commercial and non-commercial organisations to safeguard lone, remote and at-risk workers. GTC has a particularly long-established track record in supporting various UK forestry agencies, dating back to 2016. Forest rangers across the UK have carried SPOTs for safety and emergency support as they operate in remote and rugged locations, often performing potentially hazardous jobs involving heavy equipment.
GTC has also provided SPOT technology to other government authorities, armed forces, and commercial organisations, including Scottish Water. GTC’s customer base for SPOT also consists of security firms, utilities, maritime operations providers, commercial land management specialists, professionals with specialist expertise in hazardous occupations and sporting event organisers.
All these users recognise that when their activities, whatever they may be, take them beyond reach of existing mobile networks or other terrestrial communications systems, only satellite technology can provide trustworthy and ubiquitous connectivity.
SPOT Gen4, newest addition to the SPOT device family
SPOT Gen4 is the most recent addition to the SPOT device family. Launched in EMEA in August 2020, it offers new features including an enhanced, more detailed mapping interface with more display options, improved water resistance, geofencing capability, and new streamlined design, among other enhancements.
Like its predecessors, SPOT Gen4 features a one-touch SOS button that instantly sends the user’s GPS location over Globalstar’s satellite network to the SPOT 24/7 Emergency Response Centre. The Centre then transmits GPS positioning information to local first responders so that help can be rapidly dispatched to the user’s precise location.
Organisations which deploy SPOT for staff safety have the option of configuring their devices to send an SOS alert directly to in-house security and operation centres, instantly transmitting GPS co-ordinates for prompt internal emergency handling. The devices’ tracking capability helps first responders, friends and colleagues to locate users even if they are unable to press the SOS button during an emergency.
Emerging applications combine Globalstar satellites and IoT (the Internet of Things)
With more widespread recognition of IoT (the Internet of Things), GTC has seen its expanding customer base use Globalstar technology to perform a range of functions which is ever-growing, both in number and variety.
SPOT Trace devices were originally created to safeguard valuable assets against theft, and GTC customers rely on the device to keep tabs on everything from leisure marine craft, to motorbikes, trucks, trailers, and even tuk tuks, the popular public transportation vehicles of Thailand.
But the applications of SPOT Trace have diversified considerably. NATO, for example, procured its SPOT Trace devices from GTC to study ocean current movement, using buoys, for operational purposes.
Hivemind, another GTC customer, is using Globalstar’s commercial IoT SmartOne C satellite transmitter as well as SPOT Trace for its ingenious beehive optimisation platform. The company is helping producers of honey to enhance the strength of their hives and to reap higher yield. SmartOne C attached to a hive monitors its weight. When the optimum weight is reached, the owner is alerted that it’s time to harvest. Meanwhile, SPOT Trace units are helping safeguard the valuable hives against theft.
“Demand for SmartOne C is higher than ever,” Phipps added, citing growing deployments for livestock monitoring as well as tracking for a range of assets. GPSOne, a provider of satellite tracking services in Kazakhstan procured 600 SmartOne C satellite asset trackers from GTC in October 2020, and has gone on to purchase many more devices due to its success. SmartOne C-fitted collars are helping Kazakh horse owners monitor and safeguard their prized free-roaming herds.
“The 20,000 SPOT milestone we’re celebrating today with Globalstar is yet another testament to the inherent value of its technology and satellite fleet, and the enduring appeal of its economical products and solutions, which we are bringing to individuals, businesses and other organisations around the world,” added Phipps.
“We heartily congratulate GTC and Orbsat on the remarkable 20,000 SPOT milestone we’re announcing today,” said Mark O’Connell, Globalstar EMEA General Manager.
“The range of applications and contexts in which we see Globalstar devices being used is ever-growing; the seemingly limitless ways in which our technologies are helping improve businesses, non-commercial organisations, and of course to safeguard people, animals and material assets is an enormous source of pride at Globalstar,” O’Connell added.