17 November 2009

APRS app (Updated December 15, 2009)

I have found three APRS apps for iPhone/iPodTouch using APRS in some form. One is just re-directing to an APRS web site available for every one. Other services in that app need subscriptions, which are free on other web sites! Before you buy an app it is wise to read reviews or find info on the web if possible. An other APRS app is more focused on messaging than maps. The app PocketPacket is the best developed one for the moment as I see it. The screen dumps are from the PocketPacket. The left one is part of the set-up screen. I have here set my position manually. After connection to an APRS server the packet flow can be observed as shown in the right screen dump.

This is the zoomable map showing APRS stations nearby my QTH connected to my chosen APRS-IS server in the set-up page. You can click on the stations on the map for further information. One very nice feature with the PocketPacket app is that it has an in-built TNC! The left screen shows an APRS packet string that I have received from a nearby digipeater. The input was made by placing the iPod Touch external mic close to the loudspeaker of an Yaesu FT-857 transceiver tuned to 144.800 MHz. For the moment you cannot connect with your own APRS station. This will be developed later on the developer told me. At the end of my blog page you can see my latest APRS positions.

Update Dec 15, 2009: The PocketPacket is now updated with a new version with more nice features, incl.the possibility to announce your own position. The app works great with my iPod Touch gen. 3. I wish i had an iPhone and use the in-built GPS receiver :-) I strongly can recommend this amazing app.

PSK31 app

PSK31 is popular form of narrow-band modulation and low transmit power text communication aid on the radio amateur HF bands. Now you can do this with an iPod Touch and the app I-Psk31!

See a short video here showing how I did receive a CQ from F5PEZ in France. This was on the 10 MHz band today. I just put an external microphone to the iPod Touch close to the loudspeaker of a Yaesu FT-857D transceiver´s loudspeaker. It was a little tricky to tune in the PSK31 signals and I did not try to send my own PSK31 signals.