In this video, I’ll be doing a deep dive comparison between the inReach Mapshare feature versus the Location Share+ feature on ZOLEO satellite communicator. I’ll be looking at the portal settings for both along with how each of the smartphone apps (Earthmate va ZOLEO) handles this functionality.
Mapshare was a feature in the early days of inReach, back when it was Delorme, so much has changed since then. ZOLEO launched the location share+ feature in May 2021, leveraging the messaging app. There are a few approaches that Garmin & ZOLEO have made to make this feature work within their ecosystems.
The point of this feature on each device is to share your location while out in remote locations. Contacts can follow your progress based on update interval and able to send messages to you while in the field.
InReach Mapshare is essentially a public URL of the map page from the inReach portal. You can lock things down as per access be enabling a password, select how much of you track history to display and if people with the Mapshare URL can message you or find your location. The point here is that anyone with the URL can view your Mapshare page, so setting things right for you is important before you go.
ZOLEO on the other hand bundles the Location Share+ as an add-on feature that you can add to your monthly service plan when needed and it’s part of the check-in & SOS contacts section. You can specify up to 5 people to send location share+ information and they need to use the ZOLEO messaging app in order to receive the updates.
Both Mapshare & Location Share+ has a feature to not send updates to your location if you have not moved. This is very useful when you are progressing at a slower pace and stopping for lunch or other pauses, the contact viewing your updates can see from the messaging app when was the last time you moved, as compared to Mapshare where it’s not very clear unless you do some math during the time intervals.
Since ZOLEO Location Share+ updates are to specific people with the app, your updates will be seen in the respective message ballon of the app. So the person can send you app to app messages and flip over to see your location updates.
Mapshare URL is generic, so even if you share your Mapshare link with a contact, they will either get a email or SMS which directs you to the Mapshare site and if the options are enabled the person on the other end can send you a sms or email by providing their contact details.
Both use similar intervals as to when to send the updates from 6 min to 4 hours. InReach interval default is 10 min while ZOLEO default is 1 hour, but you can set it to 12 min to get close to inreach.
Social Sharing on your progress either via twitter or Facebook is only possible with Mapshare. I’ll be hones to say that this was a big feature I used a lot when I was using inReach but with ZOLEO and not wanting to share everything about my hike to the public, the social share isn’t as important to me and I don’t miss it on the ZOLEO.