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Thread: EyeFi Access

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    Senior Member staehpj1's Avatar
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    EyeFi Access

    I am planning to use an EyeFi card on my upcoming Southern Tier. That and my work Blackberry will be my means of uploading pictures and making journal entries.

    For those who have not yet seen it, the EyeFi card is a mini SD memory card with built in WiFi. It was hard for me to believe that they could put that capability on such a tiny card, but they did.

    I bought the Connect X2 model for my wife and it works great. She just has to turn the camera on when at home and the photos get uploaded to her computer via the wireless network.

    I am thinking of getting the Mobile X2 model for my camera. It comes with a year of HotSpot Access that is provided by AT&T Wi-Fi, Easy Wi-Fi and Harborlink. They claim "tens of thousands of locations, including Starbucks, Barnes & Nobles, restaurants, major hotels, airports, and more". That said I wonder how frequently I will get a connection on the Southern Tier? Anyone have first hand experience with that?

    The card can also be configured for other Hotspots, but since I am not taking a computer I will be stuck with their network and any others that I pre-configure before I leave. Does anyone have a list or some suggestions of any standard hotspot configurations that I should pre-configure? I am thinking along the lines of fast food chains and motel chains if they have a standard setup and password.

  2. #2
    <riding now> BigAura's Avatar
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    I did the Southern Tier in 2010 and had AT&T service about 90% of the days while along the route. Of course there were dropout spots at times and when I went off route into Big Bend and Gila. Also be sure to turn off International Roaming so as not to connect to cell towers south of the border.

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    <riding now> BigAura's Avatar
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    Ooops, I see you're asking about WIFI. McDonald's and local libraries have WIFI.

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    Senior Member staehpj1's Avatar
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    Still good to know since my work provided Blackberry is on the AT&T Network.

    My WiFi question is EyeFi specific since i will not have a computer along and the EyeFi card can not be configured without one. As a result I will need to use the configuration I start with. I think that it will work with any open WiFi network. Any one that requires a click through in the browser will only work if pre-configured or if it is one of the ones on the AT&T Hotspots, Easy WiFi, and Harborlink lists. I think that Mc Donalds is included on the AT&T list though.

    I think that my pictures will be able to be uploaded at least every few days using those free WiFi locations with the EyeFi card. My hope is that someone can either verify that or invalidate it.
    Last edited by staehpj1; 12-05-11 at 08:11 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by staehpj1 View Post
    I am thinking of getting the Mobile X2 model for my camera. It comes with a year of HotSpot Access that is provided by AT&T Wi-Fi, Easy Wi-Fi and Harborlink. They claim "tens of thousands of locations, including Starbucks, Barnes & Nobles, restaurants, major hotels, airports, and more".
    According to EyeFi's comparison chart the Pro X2 is the only model that includes on-the-go WiFi access. Other models can be upgraded for $30/year. Eye-Fi's access page gives links to the service providers' location databases. I'd pick a few cities along the route and check the coverage databases to see if their "access anywhere" claims hold up. AT&T seems to offer coverage at most McDonald's, so that will probably get you through much of the journey

    The card can also be configured for other Hotspots, but since I am not taking a computer I will be stuck with their network and any others that I pre-configure before I leave.
    The Eye-Fi USB dongle is pretty small. Even if you're not planning to bring a computer, you can often access one at a library or FedEx Office location. Might not be a bad idea to bring the dongle along, just in case you need to configure the device while you're on the road. In a pinch, you could stop at a library that offers public computer access and upload files directly from the card.

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    Senior Member staehpj1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sstorkel View Post
    According to EyeFi's comparison chart the Pro X2 is the only model that includes on-the-go WiFi access.
    Thanks. I missed that, thought the Mobile did as well.

    Quote Originally Posted by sstorkel View Post
    In a pinch, you could stop at a library that offers public computer access and upload files directly from the card.
    That is what I did as standard practice last trip.

  7. #7
    working on progress treebound's Avatar
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    I haven't loked into an eye-fi yet, but can you set it up to connect to your phone? Then just bring a phone-to-computer cable/charger to charge the phone and transfer data if needed via a library computer.

    Places to link up are coffee shops, ******* Barrel restaurants, maybe Denny's, truck stops. Just some ideas and thoughts. Thinking about it, I believe some handimart type gas stations are starting to have customer wi-fi.
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    Senior Member staehpj1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by treebound View Post
    I haven't loked into an eye-fi yet, but can you set it up to connect to your phone? Then just bring a phone-to-computer cable/charger to charge the phone and transfer data if needed via a library computer.
    No, while the EyeFi does, the Blackberry I am using does not support that. It would kind of defeat the purpose that I had in mind any way. The idea was to have the EyeFi upload all my pictures to Picasa or whatever and select ones that I flag (by locking them in the camera) to another location, probably facebook. I want this to happen with as little effort as possible on my part. Basically I just want to plug the card in and have the uploads occur while I eat lunch or whatever. The card can be configured to do exactly that, which is why I bought it. Hopefully that will actually work out in practice.

    When I want to mess around with either the blackberry or a computer at a library or where ever I will be updating a Crazy Guy journal. I have always found the library computer photo transfers too time consuming to upload all my pictures and I always run out of the allotted time unless I just upload a few preselected pictures. I also seem to find libraries that are open when I want to stop pretty seldom, like once a week if I an lucky.

    I guess I will see how this works out. Worst case, I'll do text journal entries with the Blackberry and occasional photos with a card reader at the library or with a motel lobby computer if I get a room like I did on my last trip.

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    working on progress treebound's Avatar
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    Interersting. I'll have to see if my phone can talk with an Eye-Fi card.

    Looks like that Pro card is the way to go then.
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    It's another gadget, but you might want to consider picking up an iPod touch to act as a bridge between your EyeFi and whatever network you'll have access to. EyeFi shows it has an app that allows direct transfer to an iPhone, then you can use the iPod to upload to the hotspot and easily configure it to access various hotspots.

    I guess for the EyeFi to automatically upload pics whenever it finds a hotspot you'd have to leave the camera on most of the time?

  11. #11
    Senior Member staehpj1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by briwasson View Post
    It's another gadget, but you might want to consider picking up an iPod touch to act as a bridge between your EyeFi and whatever network you'll have access to. EyeFi shows it has an app that allows direct transfer to an iPhone, then you can use the iPod to upload to the hotspot and easily configure it to access various hotspots.
    Part of the appeal of the EyeFi for me was to eliminate using another gadget. I actually own a Nokia N800 that takes the same memory as my camera, so if I wanted to carry another half pound I could take that and would not need to bother with the EyeFi. Since I am trying to go crazy light this trip that does not appeal to me. I am shooting for a total of 40 pounds of gear including the bike. The Olympus Pen E-PL1 and extra lens is just about my only weight splurge.

    Quote Originally Posted by briwasson View Post
    I guess for the EyeFi to automatically upload pics whenever it finds a hotspot you'd have to leave the camera on most of the time?
    My plan was to upload when I stopped for a break in places where there was WiFi. That might not even mean turning the camera on. I am pretty sure the EyeFi Card will work outside the camera. It just needs to be powered. That could be done by plugging it in to a little card reader that is plugged in to a USB charger or other power supply. That would suffice if the desire is to conserve camera battery.

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