by Frank Miniter - Thursday, April 14, 2016
Traveling Hunters Should Consider Getting a Cellphone Signal Booster
Being disconnected from the world can be a peaceful thing. But being out of touch with family or work for too long can be stressful. So before you head to the hinterlands for that dream hunt you should ask your outfitter or someone local if your cell-service carrier has coverage. If they don’t—or if they tell you maybe you’ll get a bar on such and such mountain—then maybe you should consider getting a cellphone signal booster. The prices of these units has fallen and there are now many options available.
Basically, a cellphone signal booster makes your existing 3G and/or 4G LTE signal stronger. They are FCC-certified devices that can reduce dropped calls, stuck text messages and slow Internet speeds. There are two different types of external antennas: omni-directional and yagi (directional). An omni-directional antenna is designed to send and receive signals in all directions, whereas a yagi antenna concentrates on a specific direction. Most are omni-directional, but in very remote areas a yagi will reach significantly greater distances to cellphone towers.
Make Your Cell Phone Double as a GPS Unit
The smartphone hasn’t quite replaced the GPS unit, but it is getting closer. You don’t necessarily even need cell towers to keep navigating with your smartphone. All you have to do is cache the needed maps in your phone’s memory and let its GPS capabilities keep track of where you are; for example, Android phones, like many smartphones, use Assisted GPS (aGPS) to keep track of your location when you don’t have cell service. Now an updated app from onXmaps (onX HUNT 3.0) makes it even easier to use your smartphone as a GPS device.
This app has been evolving as they continually add more state land-ownership data and improve its functionality. This is the company leading the way to give hunters precise information about who owns each parcel of land, so hunters can find overlooked sections of public land or find private landowners to seek access. Its latest version allows you to access “Saved Maps” when you don’t have cell service and to easily change between several map options. An overview of its products can be found here.
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