Some skydiving locations have spotty reception and this is exacerbated by trees, ponds, rocks...
The $60/year charge is a bitter pill to swallow. Is there a way to do a "pay per use" model. Like: you just pay for the tracker then only if you lose your canopy, pay $20 for the pinging to work?
Installing in the pilot chute was my first thought too. Take a look here:http://www.chutingstar.com/media/catalog/product/cache/1/image/1200x/040ec09b1e35df139433887a97daa66f/m/i/miragehandles_1.jpg
The little ball is the activation handle for the main canopy. it is the size of a hacky sack.
But you probably can attach it anywhere on the canopy (Dbag, risers, slider... these are all places that the skydivers here know).
If this can send 600 pings per charge and only turns on after the cutaway happens than there should be no problem to charge once a month, keep it passive until the cutaway.
Even if it just sends one ping once it lands with GPS coordinates accurate to 50 feet...then this is a good thing.
What I would like to see is a tracker that is permanently attached. I charge it once a month or just make sure it is charged before I jump. (so even if it is inside the packjob, I am fine).
The tracker can be totally passive for hundreds of jumps. If there is a cutaway then it turns on and sends pings once a minute until it stops moving. Then one ping each 10 minutes for 24 hours then once an hour until it dies.
The ping can go to a website with GPS coordinates.
You only pay to access the website without a yearly subscription.
Just to give you some perspective about frequency of occurrence.
The average cutaway frequency is once every 700 jumps (Not trying to start an argument just giving the guy some idea...). Some skydivers will not cut away in several years. Paying 60$/year is a bit harsh especially if I buy 2 or 3 of these things. There are no dangerous dives
Only dangerous divers