Free alternative to communication systems?

If you wanted to talk to others in a group on a motorcycle tour, you usually had to resort to expensive intercom devices. HelmChat now offers a free alternative.

 

Free app for group communication

HelmChat is an app for Android and IOS. Via Bluetooth you can pair conventional headsets with hands-free function or use wired devices to talk to others in a group while riding a motorcycle.

The app has been optimized for a small amount of data, so that only about 30 MB of data volume is generated per hour.

The system has integrated noise reduction and automatically adjusts the volume of the participants so that everyone in the group can be heard at the same volume, regardless of their speed.

 

Groups of up to 75 bikers possible

In the app you can create groups and integrate up to 75 people. But the manufacturer says quite frankly that at the moment a connection up to max. 15 people works best. The chats are then transmitted encrypted to the different participants. This guarantees data protection, but participants in the group will of course hear the audio signal in a clear tone.

 

Internet connection required

Since the system uses the Internet connection via the mobile phone, it only works as long as the mobile phone has reception. If you are mainly on the way on routes where the mobile phone reception leaves something to be desired, you will have to continue to use other intercom devices. It should be noted, however, that all devices in the group need to be compatible.

If you use HelmChat and the reception stops, you don’t have to join the group manually or open the app again. As soon as you have reception again, the phone will automatically link again.

 

Not for profit

I became aware of HelmChat through a nice mail from the developer who came up with the idea during the Corona pandemic to use videoconferencing software to connect a larger group of motorcyclists. Any kind of headset should be usable and allow high quality conversations. The focus was to create something helpful for the community without financial considerations. Therefore the app is ad-free and no data will be given to others.

But if the app can deliver what it promises, I hope that the manufacturer will integrate advertising into the app later. If you can see an advertisement at the start of the app and then use it for free, nobody should be bothered and the developer would get something out of it.

 

Which headsets

With which headsets the system works best, I can’t say yet, because I haven’t had the chance to test it. But there will be more information about this in the near future. Basically the system is compatible with all headsets that can be connected to the smartphone in any way. But there will be big differences, because not every headset can be worn under a helmet and it will make a big difference where the microphone is located on the headset.

To the manufacturer’s page: https://helmchat.eu

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