Communication and Navigation

Sattelite Tracker

This devices most valuable function is the  SOS that comes with the plan and Delorme will be able to contact you via text message to aid in your recovery from any location that your insurance will then pay for. This is of course something you will need to look into for your intended route. The signal is provided by Iridium satellites and this had the best coverage for our area of travel after looking at the different options. The coverage on our route has been perfect.

Delorme Inreach (£282 + subscriptions)

We bought the Delorme InReach device second hand from eBay. Once you have the device, you need to log on to the Delorme website to activate a plan. We opted for an explorer plan which gives us 40 text messages and unlimited tracking every 10 minutes each month. The functions we use the most are the weather function where you can get a brief weather forecast of 6 hour interval for the next 3 days at locations denoted by coordinates you enter. It costs one message per request. We also use the text function to let friends and family know when we will be out of GSM and Internet signal and give them a date when we should be back in contact with them. Your friends and family are also able to send you messages via the website that comes direct to the unit. The website also  shows them your location and your route so far. This all helps to reassure them that we are safe. We also bought a Ram mount with 12v charger for the car but the charging is often just to maintain the power and struggles to charge the unit from a flat battery. We found it was sometimes better to charge with the USB cable. 

Uses: ​SoS function never ,weather function about 10, text function about 15, We used it far more in Kazakstan and Mongolia when in remote areas then say south east Asia. 

Navigation system

Galileo Pro (£3.99 from App Store)

We downloaded the app as an offline map system but it very quickly became our main navigation system. The maps are free to download once you have paid for the pro version of the app and can be updated regularly. We have found the maps to be very accurate and detailed especially in the European countries and Russia. In China, the main roads are very good but it doesn't show the same level of detail as in Europe. In big cities, all the facilities are all shown (banks, hotels, supermarkets, etc). In smaller towns, these are not always shown and we did struggle to find a supermarket in some of the towns in China. In Mongolia, not all the tracks are shown but these seem to change from season to season anyway. The tracking function is very good and is mostly accurate and it shows the average speed, total distance, total time and top speed. The coordinate format can be configured so it can be input into other devices. You can search for place names but not street names which is not always ideal. The bearing line function is useful to estimate distance as it does not have the route planner function. We love this mapping software and its very similar to Maps.me we believe, however, we use this as its what we are use to.
 

Uses: ​Everyday when in the car, its our main navigational aid and we use it on the iPhone's when in city's etc

Gadget protection

Thule laptop case (£27.99)
Lifeproof iPad and iPhone cases

We use Thule laptop case for our MacBook Pro. We keep it in an underfloor compartment in the car so there is not much movement while we are on the road and this gives enough protection. It is quite light and grippy so it won't slip out of your hand when you are juggling a lot of stuff. We have never dropped the laptop in the case so not sure how good the drop protection is but the case is lined with thin foam so it should give some protection. 

For our iPhones and iPad, we use the Lifeproof cases which are drop-proof, water-proof and dust-proof. The finger print reader and the sound still work fine with the case fitted. Lifeproof cases do have a life span and they are showing signs wear and tear and I'm not sure if Haydon’s is waterproof anymore. 12 months and you will need a new one if you are anything like Haydon.

Use: Constantly