Turn off the Ad Banner  

To print: Select File and then Print from your browser's menu.

This story was printed from CdrInfo.com,
located at http://www.cdrinfo.com.

Appeared on: Monday, September 11, 2006
Globalsat TR-101

1. Introduction

- Introduction

Globalsat has been a pioneer in presenting innovating products especially around SiRF III enabled GPS devices. The latest announcement about a SiRF III device with tracking abilities raised our curioucity and therefore we decided to review the new TR-101 device.

- Globalsat TR-101

The GlobalSat TR-101 is a personal remote positioning device with built-in GPS and GSM modules. It is compact and portable. There are three speed-dial keys and one emergency key on the Globalsat TR-101. You can use these features for protecting and searching for children and old people. You can use it as a security device to track anything that needs remote monitoring.

Globalsat BT-359S

- Features

• GPS personal locator.
• GSM/SMS communication.
• Omni-directional high sensitivity GPS antenna which can receive GPS signal from all direction.
• New technology and latest SiRF Star III chipset! Excellent for fixing the position even at a weak signal status.
• Remote command control via mobile phones and/or through online software.
• Receive phone calls to have two way communications.
• It can filter incoming calls for up to 10 phone numbers. Only these 10 numbers can call in to the TR-101's and check its position.
• 3 quick dialing buttons for preset phone numbers.
• Works worldwide since supports 4-frequency GSM 850/900/1800/1900 MHz.
• SOS button send out exact location for immediate rescue/action.
• Independent SOS (emergency) button which will send GPS location information via SMS for up to 3 preset numbers (it can be 3 sets of different numbers than the 3 sets of quick dialing numbers).
• Device can be connecting to PC by using a USB cable for setup the arguments (package comes with mini USB cable when you purchase the device).
• Low battery notification before the battery dies out!

According to Globalsat, you can easily use free Google Earth mapping software or Google maps to check the location of TR-101, giving you instant access to valuable information. Note that Globalsat has already another model (TR-102) with increased functionality via GPRS protocol:

- Used chipset

The SiRF III chipset has the following specifications:

SiRF Star III WAAS enabled
1, 1575.42 MHz
C/A code:
1.023 MHz chip rate
20 channel all-in-view tracking

Acquisition: -148dBm
Tracking: -159 dBm

Position Accuracy:
10 meters, 2D RMS 
~ 5 meters, 3D RMS WAAS
0.1 m/s
us synchronized to GPS time
WGS-84 Acquisition Time (Open sky, stationary)
0.1 sec., average
Hot start:
1 sec., average
Warm start:
38 sec., average
Cold start:
42 sec., average
18,000 meters (60,000 feet) max.
515 meters/second (1000 knots) max.
Less than 4g
20 m/sec
Protocol messages:
NMEA-0183 output protocol, BluetoothInterface Baud Rate 4800bps
Output format:
GGA(1sec), GSA(5sec), GSV(5sec), RMC(1sec)
Operating temperature:
-20° to 60° C
5% to 95% Non-condensing

In addition, the device has a GSM module compatible with GSM 850/900/1800/1900 MHz networks, with the following SAR values:

2. Package Contents

- Package

For our testing purposes, Globalsat send us the retail package that includes:

1. TR-101
2. 1300 mAh Li-ion Battery
3. Mini USB cable
4. AC power adapter
6. Leather case (Optional)

The current price of the product is around $200+, as found at online stores.

After unpacking the retail box, we can see TR-101 in detail:

And the various cables/AC adapters:

The TR-101 is almost double sized than BT-338 with external antenna, its external dimensions are 115 mm x 45 mm x 22.5 mm:

The battery iIts rated at 3.7V with 1300mAh capacity:

At the front we can find 7 buttons each with different functionality:

At the left there are two jacks with rubber protection, DC and USB:

At the right, there is only the Hold switch:

Under battery cover, we can find a label with various information, like its S/N and various certifications, and of course the SIM holder:

3. Installation

- Installation

In order to use the device, first you have to charge it. Globalsat recommends to connect it with AC power adapter for battery charging at least 10 hours under the power-off condition.

Globalsat suggests that: "...The included battery is specially designed for TR-101. Please do not use other type of battery, otherwise it will damage the device...". Then you have to install the SIM card, which can be done in three simple steps:

1. Press on the battery cover, then pull it downward to open it.
2. Remove the battery.
3. Insert the SIM card into the cartridge according to the direction shown, and close the cartridge when done.
4. Put back the battery, and close the battery cover.

Afterwards, you have to install the included USB driver and software in order to setup and properly use TR-101 device.

The first time you run the TR101 setup wizard, you will have to follow an exact procedure, as explained below:

After typing SIM pin,

, you proceed to the next step,

where you can set the time zone, according to your region,

From here you can enter various numbers, either mobile or fixed, according to each function

A final overview of your settings before upload them to TR-101

TR-101 uses your mobile network either to send SMS, make and receive phone calls, according to the following slides,

The most obvious functions are to:

How does it work when you press the SOS button?

1. To confirm that you have pressed SOS button correctly, TR-101 will followed by long flash the red LED about 2 times.
2. TR-101 will start to position itself with green GPS LED flashing; when the GPS position is fixed, the LED will be on.
3. Then, TR-101 will turn off GPS and green LED goes out.
4. TR-101 begins to send SMS with blue LED flash once per second.
5. When it finished sending SMS, the blue LED comes back to standby mode with flash once per three seconds.
6. If the SMS has been sent out successfully, TR-101 will again long flash the red LED about 2 times.
7. If the GPS position can not be fixed for 3 minutes, it will send back the SMS with a "no fixed" message and the last fixed position.

You can track back TR-101 by sending a simple SMS (The message content can be anything, even a blank message). When TR-101 receives a short message, it will return the location information by SMS in the following format (numbers erased for obvious reasons ;-).

From here you can track TR-101 either by using Google Earth or by visiting Google Maps, where you can enter the GPS information xx.xxxx, xx.xxxx, as showed at the following picture, and get a picture of the place where TR-101 is located.

- GPS performance

Unfortunaly, TR-101 cannot be used with a laptop or PDA to provide back GPS information. Therefore, we couldn't measure its performance using our usual testing method. However, we were surpized with its performance, even in closed rooms, the device had 3D fix (blue led blinking), indicating that SiRF III chipset and its external antenna do really work wonderful.

4. Conclusion

- Conclusion

Globalsat's TR-101 is an interesting device, combining GPS and GSM functionality. The included SiRF III chipset promises very good GPS performance. The used GSM module allows use of all available networks, so the device will work worldwide.

Someone may be troubled, what exactly TR-101 does. A short answer would be that it tracks the person or a venicle that carries it back. You simply send a SMS to the TR-101 and it will return back its exact location, provided that its has a 3D fix. Moreoever, it can accept/make phonecalls to pre-defined numbers and also send SMS via the SOS message. All this may sound complicated but the overall interface is very simple with 7 buttons and good software support from Globalsat.

Globalsat's TR-101 can be used in various applications, like tracking back your kid with both mobile and GPS functionality, or track back a venicle (anti-theft protection). Its biggest drawback is that cannot be used with a PC/PDA, as a pure GPS device. With a retail price of $200+, we cannot say its a cheap device, but for sure it has a specific target group.

The Positive

The Negative

Home | News | All News | Reviews | Articles | Guides | Download | Expert Area | Forum | Site Info
Site best viewed at 1024x768+ - CDRINFO.COM 1998-2018 - All rights reserved -
Privacy policy - Contact Us .