Tech

GoTenna Keeps Mobile Phone Connections Intact

By Paul Pajarillo , Dec 01, 2015 01:56 AM EST
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In 2014, startup company goTenna has developed a prototype device that allows smartphones to send messages and share GPS locations even without cellular signals. Today, Daniela Perdomo and company are back as the goTenna devices are now available for mass production.

Startup goTenna has been quiet for quite some time as Daniela Perdomo and her team were busy turning the prototype device into something that could be manufactured in large quantities. The company's goal is to help its users communicate even when a cellular signal is not available. It may be because the user is at a crowded festival, a desert or in the wilderness.

Way back 2014, the startup company launched a preorder campaign. Now, it is back as the product makes its way to retail stores for purchase.

During the early times, goTenna devices were used and tested for hiking, snow sports like skiing, and outdoor activities like going fishing or deer hunting. Pairing a goTenna device to an Android or an iOS device, smartphones can send messages even without cellular signals or Wi-Fi connectivity. Messages can either be sent one-on-one, within a group or even broadcast messages to people nearby as long as they also use goTenna devices and paired up to their communication gadgets either it be a tablet or a smartphone.

In addition, users can also send GPS locations that are viewable on a pre-downloaded map. This technology can be very useful in emergency situations. Also, it can pinpoint a user's location during meetups as long as devices are paired to a goTenna device.

Given the case of outdoor activities where either people need time off from work or rather would be alone in a certain point in time, users might wonder on what is the point of the device if a person wants to be "off the grid." Perdomo says that it is not about Instagram-ing everything, it is all about telling "come here, this is where I am at" kind of idea.

The goTenna devices are available at $199 per pair. It cannot be bought individually, as there is no point in sending messages if a person is alone. This breaks down to $100 per unit, significantly less compared to a satellite radio. There are no subscription fees to be worried about either.

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