Garmin inReach Explorer vs SPOT X

I have spent the last year here in Colorado, field testing and comparing the Garmin inReach Explorer vs SPOT X. Here’s what I have found and what satellite messenger takes the top spot.

Similarities

  • SizeSPOT X
  • 2-way Messaging
  • Standalone Devices
  • SOS Call Button
  • Tracking for Friends & Family
  • Create Unique Messages
  • Built-in Navigation

Differences

  • Only the Garmin inReach Explorer+ can Access Topo Maps when Using Satellite ServiceGarmin inReach Explorer
  • SPOT X is Assigned a U.S. Cell Phone Number
  • Garmin has Global, Pole to Pole Satellite Coverage. SPOT has Some Holes in Global Coverage.
  • SPOT’s Subscription Prices are Slightly Less
  • The Garmin inReach Explorer+ has Built-in Altimeter, Barometer and Accelorometer.

YouTube Comparison Video

You can see the video below of the comparison between the Garmin inReach Explorer vs SPOT X.

Final Thoughts

I owned both the SPOT Gen 3 and the SPOT X prior to purchase the Garmin inReach Mini and Explorer+. I was extremely grateful to carry both the SPOT Gen 3 and the SPOT X as part of my gear because it meant I could communicate with family and friends and call for emergency services if I ever found myself in a life threatening situation. I would absolutely recommend both SPOT satellite messengers to anyone.

However, both of the Garmin inReach satellite messengers allow you to access maps, either on the Explorer+ or when synced with your smartphone when using the Garmin inReach Mini. I was unsure how important this would be to me when I first started research emergency satellite messenger, but I have found that this has become an important function for me over the last year.

Garmin inReach Explorer vs SPOT X

I could carry a separate device to view topo maps or carry a real map, but having everything built into one device is exactly what I love and have come to expect in a satellite messenger.

Garmin inReach Explorer+, Handheld Satellite Communicator with TOPO Maps and GPS Navigation
Spot X 2-Way Satellite Messaging, GPS Tracking SOS Feature w X-HD-X-B
Garmin inReach Explorer+, Handheld Satellite Communicator with TOPO Maps and GPS Navigation
Spot X 2-Way Satellite Messaging, GPS Tracking SOS Feature w X-HD-X-B
Topo Maps
Garmin inReach Explorer+, Handheld Satellite Communicator with TOPO Maps and GPS Navigation
Garmin inReach Explorer+, Handheld Satellite Communicator with TOPO Maps and GPS Navigation
Topo Maps
Spot X 2-Way Satellite Messaging, GPS Tracking SOS Feature w X-HD-X-B
Spot X 2-Way Satellite Messaging, GPS Tracking SOS Feature w X-HD-X-B
Topo Maps

This product was presentation was made with AAWP plugin.

I would love to hear your thoughts on these two satellite messengers, good or bad.

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8 thoughts on “Garmin inReach Explorer vs SPOT X”

  1. Hello there, thank you so much for sharing this. this is a very awesome piece and a very detailed one. I’m really happy I came across this.  Reading about this article on the Garmin inReach Explorer vs SPOT X sounds really exciting. Going through this article was indeed helpful. It was informative and educative. Thank you for sharing the information.

    Reply
    • Yes, both the Garmin inReach Explorer+ and SPOT X are satellite messengers and are perfect to be used when outside cell service. The only thing to consider is that Garmin has Global, Pole to Pole satellite coverage, but SPOT only covers about 75% of the world. SPOT has full satellite coverage in North America and Europe but there are gaps in coverage in India, China, and parts of some of the oceans.

      As long as you are in the satellite coverage area and have a clear view of the sky, you can communicate.

      Rick

      Reply
  2. Do you have any idea if the Garmin In Reach can be used the Garmin gps dog collar for dogs?I want to buy a satellite messenger so i can get help if I need help. II want to buy the Garmin gps collar , because is have a deaf, border collie, who is extremely prey driven. I need a way to call him back. I have a vibrating collar but he will ignore if if chasiNG deer. I would be delighted, if garmin in reach were able to be used as the tracking device in add ti on to all the.

    Reply

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