You are traveling in the middle of nowhere and you have that horrific sight of having no signal bars on your phone! What else is there to do than cursing all the sky-high claims of your cellular company in their ads, and obviously moving out of that area as soon as possible. Well, with this new technology, you might just have a viable option!
A company called goTenna offers a possible solution to the problem of weak or no signals on a cell phone. This lightweight (1.8 ounces) device uses Bluetooth technology to pair with your smartphone. Then, it generates VHF long-range radiowaves to communicate with other goTenna phones within its range. It allows users to send text messages up to 160 characters long or send their location using offline maps. Up to 10 people can group chat at a time, and the device lasts over 24 hours on standby. The time varies depending on how many messages you send. It can be easily charged via a micro-USB within a couple of hours. It is an all-weather rugged device that can bear any harsh weather and conditions with ease.
When you send a message, you press the name of the person you want to chat with, and a green check mark will appear if they’re in range and their goTenna is on. Device’s range depends on the terrain and the elevation. Hence, it is quite comparable with other 2W VHF radios. It will work better on higher altitude than on the lower altitude. Also, wide open areas will suit the device more in comparison to the dense and obstructed areas. It is quite sensitive to height; it will work better when attached to the top of a backpack or kept in a chest pocket than when attached to a belt loop or put in the bottom of a bag.
The company said in an official statement that it’s not meant to be used every day but rather by choice like when going to the outdoors or using your phone in an indispensable task. You can keep it for emergency situations when you are going to the areas with bad reception. GoTenna is the solution to all of your cellular problems!
GoTenna currently costs $199, and it can be used with a pair of devices. The company is using this product as a building block towards the basis for a whole stack of technologies; ranging from firmware and networking protocols to software and hardware addresses. As radio engineering is truly becoming a black art due to its lack of understanding, this company currently holds the key to building an absolutely resilient state of the art to bottom up communication infrastructure.
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