HomeAndroid users (EN)BuddyBeaconSending and resetting your beacon

14.1. Sending and resetting your beacon

The buddy beacon allows you to share your location with other people. They can see your position, and tweets, by entering your user name and your PIN number on a web page or on a handset running ViewRanger. You can send your location once, or can send it repeatedly. Likewise you can choose to locate either an individual or a list of people, or can check their location repeatedly.

Common Questions

BuddyBeacon is straight forward.  A mobile internet data connection is required.  There are two separate parts to it; sending a beacon and watching a beacon.  The app sends your GPS coordinates, user name and PIN to our server.  Anyone wishing to see your location then supplies your user name and PIN to our sever and it tells them your last reported position

How to Send/Set up your BuddyBeacon

You are asked by the software to set your PIN when your first send your beacon.

From the Map View (folded map icon, Green bar), tap the Green + Circle, BuddyBeacon, Send Beacon now, Enter your email address in the username field and choose your pin, OK

How to reset my PIN? 

In the app go to Menu tab (3 dots, green bar), Settings, BeaconMy beacon PIN, type a new 4 digit PIN.  Step back to the map.  New / Plus button (Options button on old software)  > BuddyBeacon > Send beacon now. The act of sending the PIN resets it.

You must transmit the beacon again after changing the PIN.

 

What is my beacon name?

Your beacon name is your user name or Email address, which you use to sign in to ViewRanger.  Check in Menu tab (3 dots, green bar), My Account, Sign in as a Different User, Existing User. Your username/Email address will be in the Email field. The user name is case sensitive.

Beacon controls (sending your beacon)

Beacons and trackers are controlled from New / Plus button (Options button on old software), BuddyBeacon menu.

Beacon repeat on/off - switches the buddy beacon repeat on and off. When it is on the beacon reports your position regularly, as long as the GPS has a position fix.

Send beacon now – this sends a single immediate beacon report, using the GPS position as the beacon location or, if no GPS lock, the visible map centre.

The last few items are discussed in Buddy Beacon Watching (see foot of this page).

You can also switch on the beacon on the trip view - tap the stopwatch top right, tap the beacon button.

ViewRanger App

Status

While the beacon is transmitting the app shows its status in the green top bar, just below the coordinates.  It gives the time the beacon was last sent.

Test your beacon

www.viewranger.com/buddybeacon

Once you have sent your beacon you can test to at www.viewranger.com/buddybeacon and add your own buddy.

Beacon settings

Beacon settings

The beacon settings are found in menu tab (in green bar), Settings, Beacon. The Beacon Settings menu contains these items:

Update frequency – controls how often the beacon is sent. When set to 2 minutes the beacon will be sent every 2 minutes.

My Beacon PIN – enter a 4 digit PIN. This should be a number that you are happy to tell those you want to see your location. To change the PIN simply type a different number there and transmit the beacon.

Send old positions – when this is on, if there is no mobile network coverage, ViewRanger queues beacon positions and sends them when it next gets network coverage. This avoids gaps in trails in the buddy beacon view.

Auto start beacon – if this is switched on, then ViewRanger will start transmitting the beacon as soon as ViewRanger starts and has a GPS lock - you do need to start the GPS by pressing the GPS button, middle bottom, too.

Beacon profile

To control whether the ViewRanger server stores your beacon history, to clear your past track, login in to my.viewranger.com.  Use My ViewRanger account > My profile.

Beacon track

By default ViewRanger will store all the beacon positions you send.  The beacon web page will display these, showing your trail. To tell the server not to store this history, go into the profile page on My.ViewRanger, scroll down and under "BuddyBeacon Status" set "Record BuddyBeacon Track" to "no", then press the Save profile button. Also ensure Send old positions is turned on under settings in the app (see above).

To clear the history press the "Clear track" button.

Beacon image

To change the image displayed when someone views your beacon on the web, use the photo at the top of the profile page.

Twitter feed

Any tweets you make within the time line will be displayed on the web page if you set this up in My ViewRanger Account > Plug ins and set the twitter account name.  You can also set an optional hash tag if you wish the page to only pick up certain tweets during the time line.

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