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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ's)
 


Where can I purchase SmartScouter?

You can purchase SmartScouter several ways:
1.  Call us at (888) 707-2688 . (888) 70-SCOUT (72688) - EXT 1 for Sales.
2.  Online at The SmartScouter Store
3.  From a store near you:  There are over 100 stores across the US and Canada that carry SmartScouter.  Find one closest to you by clicking on the store locator on www.SmartScouter.com.  
 
What do I need to purchase for the SmartScouter System?

When you purchase a camera, it comes with a camera, the on-board 6V standard battery, bungee straps, and battery charger. The camera will need a CF-Card to operate which is not included in the base price. Bundle packs which include the CF-card are available and you can also purchase the CF-cards from our accessories page.
In addition we recommend that you invest in one of the following three power related accessories. 
1. SmartScouter Solar Panel. This solar panel was designed by SmartScouter to work with our cameras even without ideal sun-light exposure. An extra large Solar panel works with an intelligent power management controller to keep the battery charged and minimize unnecessary drainage. 
2. SmartScouter Supplemental Battery Kit. An external battery kit that provides 4 times the life of your the standard battery alone. Turn 3 weeks battery life into three months of pictures. The heavy-duty weatherproof battery case simply plugs into the bottom of your SmartScouter camera. It comes with a more powerful battery charger so that both the standard battery and the high capacity battery can be charged in the same time frame. 
3. Spare (Standard) Battery. Even if you will not need a long-term power supply for your camera, you can avoid extra trips and downtime by having a spare battery already charged. This allows you to visit the camera once to swap the batteries instead of turning the camera off while the battery charges.
After you have your camera in hand, you will need to purchase one of our wireless plans. You can review the different wireless plans through our pricing page.


Do I need to have cellular coverage to use SmartScouter?

'SmartScouter's value is to be able to send you game photos through wireless cellular transmission. However, it also works as a stand alone digital infrared trail camera where you can visit the unit to retrieve your photos from the CF-Card. This option enables SmartScouter to be used in extremely remote areas or bottoms that do no get cellular coverage.


How Easy is it to set up and use?

Three very easy steps:

Do I have pay the full monthly service fee outside of hunting season?

No, you can suspend your account for the months you are not using the systems in the field. Instead of the regular monthly fee, we will only charge your credit card $7.99 in those months. There is a minimum fee required to keep the cellular account active with the cellular providers. You can still go to the website and view your saved photos while your unit is not active in the months you decide not to keep the unit in the field.
 

Does the SmartScouter use Infra-Red or White flash??

Infrared light is not detectable by the eye (human or animal). This provides great benefits to the hunter and security professional alike. By using infra-red flashes, we are able to prevent the 'spooking' effect that bright-white flashes have on your target. This allows you to set the camera close to the target area without alerting your subject. You never have to worry about spooking your target at night with a SmartScouter camera.


How long will the battery last in the field?

The average battery life is between 3-4 weeks. Many of our more active customers prefer to use a higher-capacity power source. On average, the device will last 3-4 weeks on the standard 6V battery (included in purchase). If you require longer time between charges, we have external battery kits and solar panels available on our accessories page. Several factors will affect battery life including temperature, number of pictures taken each day, number of pictures at night (number of flashes), and the frequency of picture transfers.  
How large is the resolution on a SmartScouter camera?
Our device uses a 1.3 megapixel camera. There are tradeoffs to consider when utilizing Infrared Flash coupled with cellular transmission: night performance, size and quality of images, and cost of cellular transmission. Because most buck activity is at night, we wanted a very high quality night camera. Also, because wireless carriers charge us by the amount of data you transmit, we selected a device that will send smaller picture file (if desired) – thus allowing us to offer you the best all around product: a very affordable device that will provide good pictures day and night. Some of the high end (non-wireless) digital scouting cameras use much higher magapixel cameras. The trade-off is yours to decide: retrieve your pictures from the field for slight improvements in quality, pay very high prices to transmit large high megapixel images, or select to take lower megapixel images to economically manage your device remotely. View our picture gallery to see pictures taken by the Smart Scouter device.


What do I do if it stops working?

The device is set up to reboot and troubleshoot itself if an error occurs. If your device loses wireless connectivity, you will need to retrieve the device and run a diagnostic. This is simple and requires you to contact our customer support team.


Is there a warranty and what does it cover?

Yes. A full 6-month warranty is provided with your purchase. See our warranty information page.
 

Will the SmartScouter camera get a signal on my property?

SmartScouter cameras work on the three largest cellular networks in the United States and the three largest cellular providers in Canada. So, if you get signal with your cell phone, then you should be able to use the device. If you have an area that does not get cellular signal, you can still use the SmartScouter as a stand alone trail camera where you manually retrieve your photos just like a non-cellular trail camera. 


Is there a difference in the wireless plan costs?  

We offer several different wireless plans to suit our customers various needs. As you know, every cellular provider has different pricing terms, methods of billing (per data/megabyte or bulk, etc).  Our pricing was designed to minimize the differences in the carriers billing methods. Our wireless plans fall into two different groups: Unlimited pictures and Fixed Pricing.
With the Unlimited Pictures plan, customers pay a base monthly fee of $14.99 and then each picture is billed on the following statement. This plan has the benefit of automatically adjusting to your bill to reflect your usage without the need to change your plan. On a busy month, the bill will be higher and on a slow month the bill will be lower. *Unlimited plans are not available with AT&T models.
With the Fixed Pricing plans, customers will have a bill that stays at a constant rate and no overage fees will ever occur. Additionally, there will be no need to worry about how many pictures your camera has transmitted. The fixed pricing plans start at $14.99 for 1MB and grow to accommodate all needs. When you reach 80% of your monthly transmission limit, we will send you an email alert. If you choose not to upgrade your plan and hit the cap before the end of the billing cycle, your SmartScouter camera will continue to take pictures and it will simply hold them until the beginning of your next billing period.


Which wireless provider should I choose?
 
SmartScouter cameras work on the three largest cellular networks in the United States and the largest cellular provider in Canada. So, for most users, all of our cameras will work at their desired location. We generally recommend matching the provider for your personal cell phone. If you are able to use your cell phone at your desired location, then you should be able to use a SmartScouter for the same network. 
 

What is Vnet?
 
SmartScouter's Vnet cameras work on one of the largest wireless networks in the United States. Due to contractual obligations, we are unable to advertise their name on our web-site. SmartScouter created the brand Vnet for this reason. To determine which of the three wireless providers has the best coverage in your area, simply review the coverage map for your area.
 

What if I have a weak signal at my desired location?
 
SmartScouter cameras work on the three largest cellular networks in the United States and the largest cellular provider in Canada. Unfortunately, there are still areas without good cell signals. To assist with this problem, SmartScouter offers a High Gain Booster Antenna. We are constantly researching cellular antennas to find the most effective units and so far we have not found a more effective antenna than our High Gain Booster Antenna.
 
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