APRS and Packet Radio Products
The Automatic Packet Reporting System (APRS) is a digital communications system for the exchange of position data, map objects, short text messages, and other tactical data. Unlike most automatic vehicle location (AVL) systems, APRS is designed as a peer-to-peer system to improve situational awareness, not just to send position data back to a central dispatch center.
Extensive networks of digital repeaters and Internet gateways exist throughout Europe, North America, Australia, New Zealand, and other regions throughout the world. These networks operate on the amateur radio bands, and are open to all licensed amateur radio operators. Several websites provide web-based access to APRS data (e.g., aprs.fi and OpenAPRS), and numerous mapping applications such as Xastir are available free or for a modest fee.
While the public APRS network is limited to amateur use, the APRS protocol, most APRS hardware, and many APRS mapping programs can be used for commercial purposes, subject of course to normal radio licensing requirements. Implementing a private APRS network typically requires more design and integration effort than the deployment of a turnkey AVL system, but APRS offers unparalleled flexibility in equipment selection and network design, along with lower hardware cost and no subscription fees.
The Tracker3 is our top of the line APRS tracker. It includes advanced features such as detailed waypoint output to NMEA, Garmin, and Magellan GPS receivers, full APRS digipeater support, remote control and configuration, KISS protocol support, weather station support, and the ability to use almost any combination of those features simultaneously. It is available as a stand-alone unit, a plug-in board for the Alinco DR-135T, or with an integrated 5-watt transceiver.
The OpenTracker USB replaces the OpenTracker+ as our lowest cost APRS tracker. It includes nearly all of the features of the Tracker2, excluding digipeater functions and Garmin binary protocol support.
The ADS-WS1 is a complete weather station capable of wired operation or direct connection to a radio (no external TNC required) for APRS and voice operation.
The OpenTracker+ replaced the original OpenTracker. It has since been replaced by the OpenTracker USB, but will continue to be available in kit form as long as components are available..
The OpenTracker, OpenTracker 1x, OpenTracker 1m, and Tracker2 series are no longer in production, but are still supported.