The radio chip costs about $200 and the service also has a fee that the satellite operator charges. Honestly, DeLorme is selling thing at cost. I assume they have built a little profit into it by securing better prices than I could get by buy large volumes, but ultimately putting satellites into space is very expensive and these radios are not built in the volumes necessary to bring the chip prices way down.
DeLorme doesn't have their own satellites, so they have to charge the monthly fee or raise the price high enough to cover the fees in some sort of annuity style calculation. Pushing the direct fees for using the satellites makes a lot of sense to me. I think this a great product. Now that I see the price I'd not even consider developing my own version, they are selling it at near cost for crying out loud.
Originally Posted by Lobby
I disagree with the subscription fee comments.
While I'd like to have a Spot, the subscription fee turns me away. I take 3 or 4 long motorcycle trips per year. Say 10 days each. Paying for 12 months of subscription when I only need it for 4 grates on me.
So I don't buy these things and wait for something reasonable to come along.