Welcome to the Marine Electronics Forums presented by Panbo and SailBits.
Where is Vesper's SOTDMA?
I'm planning to install a AIS transceiver prior to summer cruising. I'm leaning strongly toward the Vesper XB-8000 due to smart device app support. But I'd like the higher power and faster rates provided by SOTDMA for cruising in the crowded waters of Puget Sound. I hate to buy the XB-8000 only to find out that they are coming out with a SOTDMA version soon (like so many of their competitors have). I know it is touchy to talk about new product development but... Has Vesper dropped any hints of introducing a SOTDMA product? It seems like a natural step for a company that is a leader in AIS devices.
-Mic (tapping fingers)
I'm in the same situation. New boat, older XB-8000 I took out of storage and put on board which does not really work well in busy Seattle waters. I may end up with an em-trak or Digital Yachts unit if there isn't something from Vesper in the next few months. I hope there is, as they always have the best integration and features.
An e-mail to their sales department got a response of
"Thanks for your interest in the XB8000 transponder. We are definitely monitoring new technologies in our field (SOTDMA being one of them) and keeping those in our mind for future developments. That being told, we don't have any plans yet to introduce a SOTDMA transponder in the very near future."
They were interested in why I thought this was a must have feature. For the most part it's for future-proofing. When I finally upgrade my Radar, MFD and add AIS, I don't want to have to change anything out for several years. Likewise I could live with a receive only solution, but I'd rather have a transponder with the TX section turned off.
My interest in Vesper is they have the best WIFI support and smartAIS features to allow use of the XB product with a tablet as I plan the MFD/Radar replacement.