West Lancs Scouts – GPS Tracking Case Study
Small GPS navigation devices enable young people to take part in outdoor navigation activities safely.
The ability to roam between networks and not lose signal in remote areas was essential.
Pod Group’s SIM cards offer affordable multi-network solutions.
West Lancs Scouts offers young people between 6 and 25 years old, in Lancashire, UK, the opportunity to take part in fun and challenging activities. For over 100 years, Scouting has been helping young people to develop their full potential, build confidence and make lifelong friends. Through a combination of adventure, fun and friendship, Scouting helps children and young people grow and learn important life skills. The adventurous activities often take place outdoors in the beautiful and remote countryside. The activities include things like mountain walking, winter climbing, downhill and cross country skiing, dinghy and yacht sailing, paddleboarding, and mountain biking. The Scout Association takes every precaution possible to ensure that the young people in their care are as safe as possible. In order to provide the young people with an extra layer of safety, West Lancs Scouts wanted to provide them with small GPS tracking devices to carry while they undertook certain navigation activities.
Small GPS tracking devices are provided for the young people who are taking part in navigation activities. Andrew Neville from West Lancs Scouts says, ‘I work with a team that supports events within West Lancs Scouts where we wanted to introduce some small GPS tracking devices which we could give to the young people to carry when they’re out doing navigation activities in challenging environments. While the correct support and supervision are still required it allows us to give the young people the independence to head out into nature with the confidence that they’re not alone.’ The self-belief gained from learning to tackle difficult situations alone is a key part of young people’s development. With these GPS devices, they benefit from building confidence and self-reliance with the added safety net of knowing that they have a GPS tracking device if things go wrong. This combination of self-reliance and safety is key as young people begin to explore on their own and develop important life skills.
West Lancs Scouts organize trips to remote locations, where the reliability of one network provider is not guaranteed. They needed to be sure that the GPS devices would be able to connect to a robust, reliable signal, no matter where they were. In remote areas, it can be challenging for IoT devices to stay connected. Often, having access to one network is not enough as the network may lose signal. West Lancs Scouts plan trips to isolated areas such as The Lake District and Cairngorms National Park in Scotland, where signal strength can be patchy at best. They needed to be sure that the GPS tracking devices they issued to the young people would stay connected in remote, wild areas.
Pod Group’s multi-network SIM cards automatically switch to the network which offers the best signal. This means that IoT devices stay connected, even while roaming or in remote areas. ‘Once the hardware was sorted we contacted Pod Group to find a suitable data service. Although we don’t need a lot of data, the ability to roam between networks was essential. Pod Group was able to provide this connection and using their web portal we can easily manage these connections as they are required,’ Andrew Neville from West Lancs Scouts. As an agnostic IoT connectivity provider, Pod Group doesn’t ever steer its customer’s data on the Home Location Register (HLR). Customers can be sure their IoT application is connecting to the strongest signal available at all times. With Pod Group’s reliable connectivity, young people can explore the outdoors safely and confidently.