goTenna Device Pairs with Smartphones to Keep You in Touch Where There’s No Central Connectivity
Category: new products
Sep 19th, 2014 by OutdoorsFIRST
Modified Sep 19th, 2014 at 12:00 AM
BROOKLYN – We’ve all been there: whether it’s during a hike, at a crowded concert, or traveling abroad, at times when we most need to stay connected to our group, we are faced with unreliable or unaffordable cell service.
goTenna, a new connected device which is launching its pre-sales campaign today, aims to make the annoyance that’s associated with not having reliable cell service a thing of the past. Just pair your smartphone with a goTenna device and communicate off-grid with those near you who also have a goTenna, anywhere on the planet, regardless of access to cell reception or wi-fi.
goTenna conveniently fits in your backpack, pocket, or purse, and enables you to send messages and geo-location information to others that also have the device. goTenna allows you to communicate privately, free of subscriptions or fees, and is designed to be as rugged and resilient as its users: it’s super lightweight, compact, and weather-proof.
The device was designed with multiple users in mind – from the hiking enthusiast who’s often in remote areas without service, to the sports fan who’s packed into a crowded stadium with unreliable coverage. goTenna is also perfect in an emergency scenario because it lets you communicate instantly with those around you who can help, even when cell towers and wi-fi routers go out during natural disasters.
When will you need a goTenna?
When you’re adventuring in the great outdoors: Most of the beautiful national parks, ski resorts and hiking trails don’t have great service, so what happens if you get lost and need to communicate with someone? goTenna has you covered.
When you’re traveling abroad with family or friends: goTenna can be used internationally and lets you communicate with your fellow travelers free of subscriptions, service contracts or fees. It’s the perfect anti-roaming solution for frequent travelers.
When you’re in an emergency and need to reach someone around you: With goTenna, you can send messages to anyone within range of you who also has the device. When you need to reach someone around you, simply send a “shout” to another goTenna user.
When you want to communicate privately: Because goTenna has no central node, no messages are ever stored on a server. Moreover, each message is end-to-end encrypted, and you can opt to have them self-destruct upon reading, ensuring your messages are yours and yours only.
When you’re with 100,000 of your closest friends at a music festival or sporting event: If you’ve ever tried to text your friends at Coachella or at the finish line of a marathon, you’ve experienced the frustratingly spotty service associated with massive crowds. goTenna solves that problem, and lets you text or send your location to anyone within range.
“Our mission is twofold: to let people communicate whenever and wherever they want, on their own terms, and also to make sure that in times of a true emergency, people are able to reach others around them,” said Daniela Perdomo, CEO of goTenna.
How does goTenna work?
The device pairs wirelessly over BluetoothLE to the goTenna app (available on iOS and Android), allowing you to send and receive text messages and share GPS locations on beautiful offline maps via low-frequency radio-waves over relatively high range (up to 50 miles). The goTenna app has automatic message retry and will let you know when your message has been delivered to the intended recipient. You can create your own networks with goTenna, with the ability to designate specific individuals or groups as your message recipients, as well as opt into public conversations with others within range. Not only does the service offer end-to-end encryption and optional self-destructing messages, enabling users’ privacy, thanks to goTenna’s advanced networking protocols, no messages will interfere or overlap with each other.
goTenna is made of high-grade, durable materials, all industrially designed to be weather-proof and dust-tight. goTenna comes with a micro-USB charger and rechargeable lithium-ion battery, which will last 72 hours with intermittent use. If it is on 24/7, it will last around 30 hours. If off, it will hold its charge for about a year and half.
While other solutions such as field radios or satellite phones can cost $500 or $1,000 for a single unit, goTenna is offering a pre-sales discount rate of $149.99 for a pair of devices with the goal of raising $50,000. After the limited quantity of discounted devices sells out, each pair will retail for $299. goTenna is expected to start shipping its first batch in late fall. To place your order, please visit: www.gotenna.com.
Based in Brooklyn, goTenna was founded by siblings Daniela and Jorge Perdomo, who came up with the idea during Hurricane Sandy when over a quarter of cell towers were downed. Beyond an emergency situation, the use-cases became apparent everywhere: hiking in remote areas, traveling abroad, attending music or sporting events. The company’s goal is to empower people to communicate directly using their smartphones without having to rely on central connectivity, making goTenna an essential device everyone should own.