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FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions

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1.       What is EssentialsNet?

EssentialsNet is a GPS corrections service which supplies RTK corrections to GPS receivers on vehicles throughout the UK over the internet and mobile phone service, using a network of local base stations.

 2.       How does EssentialsNet work?

EssentialsNET has base stations installed across the UK streaming information back to central servers running specialised, customised software. The customer’s tractor connects to the local cell tower through the data channel of a mobile phone service then, via the internet, to our servers. Using a long established protocol it can then request a stream of corrections from any of our bases.

3.       Does EssentialsNet cover the whole of the UK?

EssentialsNet covers a large area of the UK with the exception of only a few areas. Please check the coverage map or contact us to find out more.

4.       What are the advantages of EssentialsNet?

The main advantages of EssentialsNet is the reliability and range of the signal. Unlike a radio signal, EssentialsNet is mainly transmitted over the internet - so it is not affected by the topography of the land during that proportion of it's transmission. The final leg of the journey is by cell phone where mobile phone providers have invested 10's of billions of pounds installing a network to cover the UK - so the mobile phone signal is more than adequate in most areas.  The set up costs are relatively low and the system can be easily upgraded. The use of the internet also means that EssentialsNet can provide more support to the customers; for example we can see where your tractor is in the field and provide remote management of the vehicle if necessary. The quality of the correction signal can also be monitored which increases the accuracy and reliability of EssentialsNet. The costs involved with running EssentialsNet are also lower than using a traditional base station set up because everything can be done online, this in turn means that costs are lower for customers.
 5.       What are the disadvantages of EssentialsNet?
There are not many disadvantages of EssentialsNet but one is that the data transmission is not free, like it is with a radio signal. However the data transmission costs are included in the price of EssentialsNet for customers.
 6.       What happens if I lose phone signal?
EssentialsNet relies on phone signal to connect to the internet and so if signal is lost completely corrections will also be lost. However we are able to use any network and so can choose the best signal in the area. EssentialsNet does not use a standard handheld mobile phone but a purpose built range of cell modems which offer excellent signal strength and reliability. Also most modern GPS receivers can stay fixed even if corrections are lost for up to 40 seconds or more (depending on the make of receiver). Most signal losses only occur for a few seconds and users often don't know there has been a brief signal interruption.
 7.       Can companies use EssentialsNet to form their own network?
For companies that want to offer 'own brand' RTK connections, a small network can be set-up in the customer's name which users can connect to. This will include a few base stations to cover the customer's region. The administration of the network will be done by EssentialsNet which allows the customer to enjoy their own dedicated RTK correction service.
 8.       How much does EssentialsNet cost?
The cost of EssentialsNet is £750 per year for the first tractor, £650 for the second tractor, £550 for the third and so on, to a plateau of £350. This cost includes the license fee, support and the data charge for the mobile phone.