K6TU Remote V1.2 is the first general release of the application and is now available in the Apple AppStore:
- K6TU Remote requires an iPad Air or more powerful CPU/GPU iPad (Air2, Pro etc) to provide adequate CPU and graphics performance for seamless operation of the app. The application moves a lot of streaming network traffic and is graphics intensive. Although the app will run on older iPads, screen updates will lag/overrun and the audio will break up with pops when using finger gestures to tune, zoom etc. It was simply impractical to provide adequate performance on the older units.
- If you use K6TU Remote over a VPN connection and Cellular Data, be aware that you will consume approximately 1 GB of data per hour of operation when using high frame rates (24 fps) on the pan adaptor and waterfall. Reducing the frame rate and line duration of the panafall will reduce consumption but even at lower levels of update (still eminently usable), you will still consume at least 250 MB per hour. Using WiFi to connect to the remote VPN is strongly recommended.
A purchased subscription provides full transmit/dual slice operation on all the iPad devices you have registered under your Apple ID providing they are all registered to iCloud with your account. You must be logged into iCloud to access your subscription on each device.
NOTE: This release (V1.2) provides support for phone transmission on SSB and AM only. See release plans below for more details.
An active subscription will work with all releases of K6TU Remote during the subscription period without additional cost.
Support for K6TU applications is available via a Google Group K6TU Remote. This group provides support for both the K6TU Control and K6TU Remote applications - the group is moderated and applications to join the group can be made at:
You can find documentation and FAQs for K6TU Remote at:
Future Release plans
I am already working on the next release. This is planned to include CW Support using an on-screen keyboard or using an external Bluetooth keyboard. The release will also provide basic logging capabilities in app or via a third party logging application. Details will be available on the support group.
Subsequent releases are planned to include station integration (external hardware will be required) to allow control of rotor, amplifiers etc.
Thank you again to everyone for their support and patience.
73 and may High Rate and ATNOs be with you!
Looking forward to this. I purchased an iPad mini last year. Looks like I may need to buy myself a new Xmas gift this year! A shame that none of the present mini models have the computing horsepower as I prefer the smaller screen size for my operating apps. What I need is an "iPad Air Mini" model to come out for the holiday season.
The iPad Mini 4 is a bit more confusing. It got a great screen upgrade from the 2/3, and Apple bills it as very similar to the Air 2, but it uses a different processor and a slightly faster clock speed. Unfortunately, it has 1 fewer cores in that processor so the Air2 still out powers it.
As far as how each perform with K6TU Remote, I can't comment. I have an Air1 and a Mini2, but I haven't had a chance to play with the app yet.
I have not tired the latest iPad Mini (just released a few weeks ago) but it has a 1.5 GHz processor according to:
I think this places the Mini4 between the horse power of the Air and Air2 - but YMMV and so this is not a recommendation until I can see how the app works on that model.
I also have not yet been able to try the app on the Pro - Apple forgot to send me an evaluation unit so I'm waiting for next week to purchase one. Over time, its likely there will be a Pro version of K6TU Remote - a lot more real estate to use for interesting control options!
One getting fine tuning - Howard already many the manual input suggestion but my preference is to...
- Pinch to zoom in
- Use the finger drag close to the bottom of the slice filter window
- Zoom back out as necessary
After a little while, the zoom, tune, zoom operation becomes instinctive and very fast. Faster with practice than tapping on the frequency display and entering the freuqency on the pop up keyboard.
Have tried rebooting iPad, the 6700 and uninstalling/reinstalling the app. Nothing knowingly changed in anything else in iPad or Flex. Just me? Thanks.
This morning, I purchased and installed K6TU Remote on my iPad Mini. Spectacular results. Just my opinion, but it seems like the Mini is a capable and qualified device.
A few comments for future enhancements:
1) Ability to quickly and easily "snap tune" to the nearest 10Hz, 100 Hz, or 1kHz without needing to keypad-enter the slice frequency;
2) Variable receive-bandwidth selection;
3) "Pinch" control of the vertical scale to compress-expand dB range of screen. In the alternative, up/down buttons to accomplish same.
Congrats, Stu. This is an awesome app. Highly recommended.
I pre-ordered an iPad Pro (wifi + cellular model) yesterday. I'll be downloading your app when it gets here. Since I'm CW only, I may wait until there is CW paddle support before upgrading to the full version. Should look nice on the big pro screen....
Regards, Al / NN4ZZ
al (at) nn4zz (dot) com
6700 - HW......... V 126.96.36.199
SSDR / DAX...... V 188.8.131.52
CAT................... V 184.108.40.206
I have not yet tested the app on the Pro but it should work fine. CW support with a paddle is a long way out. The first release with CW will support an on-screen keyboard or a Bluetooth connected keyboard.
Adding a paddle will require special hardware (yet to be developed) - to be blunt, the market size for this is so small, I doubt it will get done - simply no return on the investment.
Folks don't understand the amount of effort required to give them everything they want.
Sin dinero = sin producto.
Pretty easy equation.
I hope your app sells like hotcakes!
I understand about the effort, audience and ROI. About a year ago Steve mentioned his idea for connecting a paddle to both a laptop and a plan for the iPad. I don't expect to see it anytime soon but maybe you can leverage whatever they develop. The full thread is in the LINK below and the relevant post is pasted in below. Initially I may just use the app to listen and move to my operating position for the QSO. At any rate, looking forward to giving it a try.
Steve - N5AC, VP Engineering
Actually I do have a pretty good idea for how to do it. The real block is a belief that few are going to carry just a tablet and a paddle but not a PC. In other words, I don't believe that the group that says they "will carry a paddle everywhere they go, but will not buy/have a laptop and instead demand using a tablet" is a large group. If I'm wrong about that I'd like to know. Under the current thinking, if you want a paddle to operate, you would need a Windows device of some kind. So here are the operating scenarios we would plan to support with today's thinking:
- desktop PC with a CW paddle (great for the lake house, across the house, DXpedition, etc)
- laptop PC with a CW paddle (great for the road warrior if you want to carry a 5# BY-1 or suitable replacement)
- iPad with keyboard CW for the person that wants to do CW from anywhere and is willing to use a keyboard (incidentally, we are not planning to do the iPad implementation directly, but imagine that partners will do this)
- Surface with a CW paddle for the person willing to sacrifice ergonomics of operation because they want a tablet and a CW paddle on the road (again we have no plans to support the surface directly, but imagine that SmartSDR will run on this platform as it does today -- it a less that ergonomic ally preferable way)
Our thinking today is that this will cover 98% of our customers' needs. We have a plan for hooking a CW paddle to an iPad, but suspect that few will want it -- the iPad purchase says the individual wants a lightweight convenient device to carry and a CW paddle doesn't seem to fit into that. If you have to have a paddle, our thinking is that you will get/have a lightweight PC you will carry along with the paddle.
Regards, Al / NN4ZZ
al (at) nn4zz (dot) com
6700 - HW......... V 220.127.116.11
SSDR / DAX...... V 18.104.22.168
CAT................... V 22.214.171.124
So here goes...
The iPad Pro is a great example of the costs associated with keeping an app current and why there are ongoing costs. I have an Air2 which size and performance wise is great for me. But now I will have to purchase an iPad Pro so that I can test my app with that hardware - that costs me real money, not just time.
Every time FlexRadio changes the software in the radio, I have to test and often make significant code changes in order to keep the app current with their software. This takes time especially when I have to now test the app across multiple iPad versions.
Apple typically makes a major new release of iOS once a year. Each OS change has to be tested and often requires application level changes as new functionality is added which folks expect to be able to access in an app or as functionality is removed. Yes, Apple removes or changes interfaces that are necessary for an application to work. This takes more time.
Last but not least, there is new functionality that I add in the app.
Consider this; I had dinner with some friends last night - my friends have a new car that is a 2016 version of mine. Wow - does it have some cool new features! Unfortunately, they aren't available as upgrades on my car. Sure would have been nice to have a subscription that enabled me to get new functionality as my car ages. The new features aren't worth (to me right now at least) the price of ordering a new car and having to eat "drive off the lot" depreciation but that's my choice.
I apologize for the length (but not content) of this response - I'm not (as the responder to one of my other posts suggested) throwing anyone under the bus. There is a larger point here that I'm making.
Software development costs money.
Lots of money... software developers especially for iPad applications are expensive.
If FlexRadio had to hire someone to write the remote app, I'm sure they would have analyzed the cost versus the revenue it would generate as a first upfront step. They would have sighed and erased the idea of the app from their planning. It simply makes ZERO economic sense - even considering the pull through they might generate from people who buy a radio because of the app.
Apart from a long career developing software and managing teams of developers building software that is massively deployed around the world, I'm a business guy and get faced with economic tradeoffs every day. Developing any product requires understanding the size of the market for that product and what people will pay for it. If the revenue you generate won't pay for the product development, its generally a rotten idea to pursue.
If we as users of the radio want useful capabilities that augment, streamline or complement our operating of the radio, we need to be prepared to pay for them. This is doubly true for us as operators of FlexRadio 6000 series radios as in many cases, the capabilities ONLY work with a Flex 6000. This is called a constrained market.
The revenue I generate from K6TU Remote will never provide a replacement for my day job (I'm not retired) and frankly as an app with its target market, doesn't represent the best use of my development time. I could easily write apps that would generate a larger amount of revenue,
So I chose to make functionality available by subscription to make a point.
That point has now been well made and I can point to this post when answering other questions about costs, subscriptions, why-not-free (as in beer) in the future.
Thank you for reading and for the opportunity to make this important point.
There will always be a few that feel that everything they want in life should be provided, just like Mommy and Daddy provided when we were children. In recent years, we've seen people demanding all sorts of benefits from governments at all levels, as if governments are the source of all things, and that the governments owe it to us, just because we're so darned important. We've seen governments default on their bonds as a result of that attitude. I don't want to see software developers stop developing because they aren't rewarded for their efforts. Stu is enriching my life, and I'm happy to pay for it.
I don't use "JUST" K6TU Remote. I also use SSDR on my iMac, and DogParkSDR on my MacBook AIR, but the ability to take my iPad into the back yard, or to the breakfast table, OR UP THE TOWER WITH ME WHILE TUNING AN ANTENNA (which I'll be doing in about 2 hours) gives me LOTS OF FLEXIBILITY that I value.
That said, this thread must be very discouraging to STU and to the fine folks at DogPark. I'd rather see them spend their time actually CODING, rather than defending the value of their efforts.
Thank you for your BRILLIANT Program.
As you know I have already used it on my DXpeditions to remote back to my station in the USA with great success and I even had an interesting adventure being chased down the beach still in QSO using the iPad..
Your program is by far the easiest and most seamless way to remote from an iPad.
It's unfortunate that "Hams are Cheap" and somehow, while willing to pay $$$$ for hardware seem to expect all software to be free... even though the cost of software development can be many times higher than the cost of hardware....
The community needs to thank you for all your hard work...
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