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Discussion Starter #1
Everyone here knows that $400 for a tool to interface with our bike is nothing but a blatant ripoff. Because we own a BMW, people automatically assume our toilets are gold-plated. A good number of us do our own maintenance because we don't want our wallets to be financially raped. Some things are worth spending top-dollar on: a high-quality helmet, riding gear, a seat, beer, but paying twice the amount of a bike payment isn't one of them.

I came across this German company, MotoScan, which makes an app for ANDROID devices ONLY. The app has a few different versions you can buy, but the reality is that the top-tier version is what people should get, and that'll run you about $41.

The app has a diagnostic feature that will test your OBD-II adapter to make sure it will work before you pay for the app. The makers also warn against using cheap chinese shit.

The nice thing about the app is that it's supposed to do everything you need it to do AND IT DOESN'T LIMIT YOU TO TEN BIKES LIKE THE GS DOES! Hell, the makers of the GS even say that if you can afford ten BMW bikes, you can afford to spend another $400-$500 for their "professional"-level shit.

Anyhow...excuse the small rant...they recommend a few different adapters that are guaranteed to work with both their app and your BMW. Their website also has a lot of information and FAQs so you can learn yourself something.

So I purchased the UniCarScan BT for 49 euros, the long adapter cable for 20 euros, and shipping with DHL (ugh), was another 27 euros. Now the cable is only needed if your bike has the round connector on it; if yours is rectangular, you won't need it. In USD, I spent, though PayPal, $101...A QUARTER OF WHAT THE GS-911 WOULD RUN!

The adapter will connect to your Android device via Bluetooth.

Now the sweet thing about all of this is that you can plug this into your CAR'S OBD-II port...all you need to do is to install an OBD-II app on your Android device.

Now, I haven't gotten this in my hands yet, so I can't vouch for it, but there are plenty of users out there showing how well it does. MotoScan claims this works for all BMW bikes from 1998 on...

BTW, the site is in German but Google does a decent job translating it.
 

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When you get it, give us a rundown on all of its features it claims compared to what the GS does. It is always nice to have options.

Don't knock the GS too hard. For many years it was that or the dealer. There was no other game in town and it saved a lot of people a lot of money and time.
 

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Well, this is my second motorcycle the first one I used GS911. On my second I was looking at GS911 again but I remembered with my last one, when you use it with laptop vs tablet or phone the laptop gives me more options and that is the drawback. I was looking at Touratech's catalog and notice they were selling Duonix bikescan instead GS911 so I venture out and ordered one, all I can say is it is portable like OBDII tool and if you have the latest bike all you need is another adapter cable $20 or so and that is for square plug
www.duonix.de

Sent from my SGP312 using Tapatalk
 

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The EU wrote up some standardization regulations for vehicles. Among the is a section for motorcycles. The OBDII outlet is part of it. All information is supposed to be accessible to anyone.
Some late reading, you can dig through and find the moto stuff:
https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?uri=CELEX:32013R0168
Things like no more limited HP for France are in it. And imported bikes must meet the same standards. Harley will have OBDII ports also. Maybe even in the states to keep production simple, don't know though I don't see them up close.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Don't knock the GS too hard. For many years it was that or the dealer. There was no other game in town and it saved a lot of people a lot of money and time.
Not saying it isn't useful, but what they charge is awful and they do it because they think we're full of cash. Plain and simple.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
The EU wrote up some standardization regulations for vehicles. Among the is a section for motorcycles. The OBDII outlet is part of it. All information is supposed to be accessible to anyone.
Some late reading, you can dig through and find the moto stuff:
https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?uri=CELEX:32013R0168
Things like no more limited HP for France are in it. And imported bikes must meet the same standards. Harley will have OBDII ports also. Maybe even in the states to keep production simple, don't know though I don't see them up close.
The euros sure love their regs, lol.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Well, this is my second motorcycle the first one I used GS911. On my second I was looking at GS911 again but I remembered with my last one, when you use it with laptop vs tablet or phone the laptop gives me more options and that is the drawback. I was looking at Touratech's catalog and notice they were selling Duonix bikescan instead GS911 so I venture out and ordered one, all I can say is it is portable like OBDII tool and if you have the latest bike all you need is another adapter cable $20 or so and that is for square plug
www.duonix.de

Sent from my SGP312 using Tapatalk
It's good to have options, but, if I was looking at the correct product, that's still a 300 euro device.
 
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Not saying it isn't useful, but what they charge is awful and they do it because they think we're full of cash. Plain and simple.
You do years of software development and software upgrades ( for free ), have plastic injection molds and circuit boards manufactured to make a professional product made for a limited audience unlike OBD-II for BMW Owners only who do their own wrenching and sell it for $10 and you will not be able to maintain that business model unless you are independently wealthy. I know because of the number of people asking to borrow one, not willing to pay the $400 for the tool that does pay for itself in savings. If you want to just reset a service light, maybe not so much. I already have my GS so no need for me to buy anything else but I am interested in a comparison of features so I know if and when to recommend something other than the GS which is the standard for comparison to people looking to fix or diagnose something.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
...stuff written here...
When I get this product in, I'll post what I find. Probably have to bring my friend over with his GS to try to catch any differences.

I don't think it would take that long to write the code to do any of this work; as a matter of fact, there are lots of YouTube videos showing people making OBD readers from scratch- that means making the adapter and writing the code.

Let's face it, if you own a BMW (anything), a MB, a HD, or anything similar, you're gonna have your wallet raped.
 

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Let's face it, if you own a BMW (anything), a MB, a HD, or anything similar, you're gonna have your wallet raped.
That is why we appreciate things like this and the GS as well that help us save money.

Looking forward to a side by side function comparison.
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
UPDATE 1:
OK, so the part came in today, the 18th of August (only two days after the USPS predicted it would get here). I would say that the packaging, given what was in it, was a bit overdone- the adapter was in a retail-like clear plastic case with a white cardboard sleeve, the cable was in a ziploc bag, and both were encased in foam rubber cut-outs. On top of that, they folded a few layers of bubble wrap on top of it all. Pretty impressive.

I did the adapter check and it checked-out OK (as it should). I went ahead and purchased the Ultimate license for about $45.

Not having a GS911 right here right now, I can't really say anything about the software just yet. It does have the ability to reset the service data but it seems to be only in KMs, not miles. There's an option to change the picture in the app but it hasn't worked just yet. ABS bleeding functions are there. It displays error counts and codes, but it doesn't explain what they mean. The adapter connected to the phone without any issues. This app does have the ability to monitor live data feeds, but I haven't used them yet.

Planning on getting with my friend who has a GS911 maybe Wednesday, so look for more then.

Now that I am thinking about it, I wonder if a WiFi version adapter would be able to connect to the GS911 software, since it's supposedly reading the same data? Something to look into for sure. The app will connect to a BT or WiFi adapter, but the UniCarScan I chose is BT only.

UPDATE 2:
PLayed around with the app some more. You are given options on which parameters to use (e.g.: When dealing with the TPMS sensors, you normally only see three data points, but you can add tire pressure, temperature, battery voltage, etc.). One issue- the app doesn't save these preferences and you have to select them each time.

Still a lot of untranslated German in the app. What I see is that a parameter name will be in German but the description will be in English.

Service reset is in metric only; response from developer is that the bike will convert.
 

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UPDATE 1:
OK, so the part came in today, the 18th of August (only two days after the USPS predicted it would get here). I would say that the packaging, given what was in it, was a bit overdone- the adapter was in a retail-like clear plastic case with a white cardboard sleeve, the cable was in a ziploc bag, and both were encased in foam rubber cut-outs. On top of that, they folded a few layers of bubble wrap on top of it all. Pretty impressive.

I did the adapter check and it checked-out OK (as it should). I went ahead and purchased the Ultimate license for about $45.

Not having a GS911 right here right now, I can't really say anything about the software just yet. It does have the ability to reset the service data but it seems to be only in KMs, not miles. There's an option to change the picture in the app but it hasn't worked just yet. ABS bleeding functions are there. It displays error counts and codes, but it doesn't explain what they mean. The adapter connected to the phone without any issues. This app does have the ability to monitor live data feeds, but I haven't used them yet.

Planning on getting with my friend who has a GS911 maybe Wednesday, so look for more then.

Now that I am thinking about it, I wonder if a WiFi version adapter would be able to connect to the GS911 software, since it's supposedly reading the same data? Something to look into for sure. The app will connect to a BT or WiFi adapter, but the UniCarScan I chose is BT only.
Seeing the GS911 tracks vin allocations, I would expect it to be somewhat proprietary software and doubt it would function with another make tool. Keep going.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Seeing the GS911 tracks vin allocations, I would expect it to be somewhat proprietary software and doubt it would function with another make tool. Keep going.
True, but what we're talking about is that the GS911 WiFi adapter should be the same as any other WiFi adapter unless they put in something on the adapter to ID it as a GS part so that only a GS adapter will work with their software. The software just reads the info the adapter is collecting, so if the software "sees" a WiFi adapter, I wonder if it would connect?

I am also going to test whether the GS911 WiFi adapter my friend has will connect to the MotoScan app. This could be interesting.
 

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True, but what we're talking about is that the GS911 WiFi adapter should be the same as any other WiFi adapter unless they put in something on the adapter to ID it as a GS part so that only a GS adapter will work with their software. The software just reads the info the adapter is collecting, so if the software "sees" a WiFi adapter, I wonder if it would connect?

I am also going to test whether the GS911 WiFi adapter my friend has will connect to the MotoScan app. This could be interesting.
Not going to say it isn't possible especially if they reverse engineered the software but I am not going to take the chance of bricking my GS. Feel free to try it with your buddy's though >:)
 

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Call it Tough Love, call it Being Cruel To Be Kind, call it whatever you want. But I call BS.

Everyone here knows that $400 for a tool to interface with our bike is nothing but a blatant ripoff.
what they charge is awful and they do it because they think we're full of cash. Plain and simple.
Actually, like most every company that employs people full-time, they have a product pricing model that takes the costs of hardware, shipping, staff salaries, dealer liaison, building rent, utility rates and taxes into account.
The skills that allow their product to continue working and receive updates also draw from a labour pool that, in 2020, is becoming increasingly expensive: software development.
Welcome to the free-market economy, bud. :deal:

Let's face it, if you own a BMW (anything), a MB, a HD, or anything similar, you're gonna have your wallet raped.
Some things are worth spending top-dollar on: a high-quality helmet, riding gear, a seat, beer, but paying twice the amount of a bike payment isn't one of them.
Basically, what you just said is: "I want the best diagnostic tool. But I don't want to have to pay for it."
People kinder than I am might call that ironic. Dude, I hate to break this to you, but motorcycle repairs cost money no matter which way you jump.
Take your chances with MotoScan - it may or may not end well. Or take the easy way out and go to the dealer.
But if you want a BMW-specific diagnostic tool that has 20 years of development invested in it and is available to the public, and on which it is guaranteed that all functions work as advertised, GS-911 is the only option you have.

I came across this German company, MotoScan... In USD, I spent, though PayPal, $101...A QUARTER OF WHAT THE GS-911 WOULD RUN!
Looking at post dates, I see that after a few days of singing this thing's praises, you went strangely quiet.
Did you find out the hard way that it doesn't do what you expected it to do?
There are good reasons why MotoScan is cheap.

I don't think it would take that long to write the code to do any of this work; as a matter of fact, there are lots of YouTube videos showing people making OBD readers from scratch- that means making the adapter and writing the code.
Let me ask some hypothetical questions.
How much time do you have to devote to a project like this? Since you bought MotoScan, it's fair to assume the answer is 'Not much'.
How many full-time developers, support staff and Beta testers do you think you'd have to employ?
How many collective man-hours would they chalk up in developing a competitive product that lives up to its maker's claims, and at what cost?
And at what price would you sell your product to amortize that cost?

If you think you're capable of building a diagnostic tool to compete with GS-911 on equal terms, and doing it as a one-man operation, then by all means, go ahead. I think the entire BMW DIY community would be watching with great interest.
Me, I give you two weeks before you're back here crying 'Mea Culpa'. :wink:
 

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Call it Tough Love, call it Being Cruel To Be Kind, call it whatever you want. But I call BS.




Actually, like most every company that employs people full-time, they have a product pricing model that takes the costs of hardware, shipping, staff salaries, dealer liaison, building rent, utility rates and taxes into account.
The skills that allow their product to continue working and receive updates also draw from a labour pool that, in 2020, is becoming increasingly expensive: software development.
Welcome to the free-market economy, bud. :deal:




Basically, what you just said is: "I want the best diagnostic tool. But I don't want to have to pay for it."
People kinder than I am might call that ironic. Dude, I hate to break this to you, but motorcycle repairs cost money no matter which way you jump.
Take your chances with MotoScan - it may or may not end well. Or take the easy way out and go to the dealer.
But if you want a BMW-specific diagnostic tool that has 20 years of development invested in it and is available to the public, and on which it is guaranteed that all functions work as advertised, GS-911 is the only option you have.



Looking at post dates, I see that after a few days of singing this thing's praises, you went strangely quiet.
Did you find out the hard way that it doesn't do what you expected it to do?
There are good reasons why MotoScan is cheap.



Let me ask some hypothetical questions.
How much time do you have to devote to a project like this? Since you bought MotoScan, it's fair to assume the answer is 'Not much'.
How many full-time developers, support staff and Beta testers do you think you'd have to employ?
How many collective man-hours would they chalk up in developing a competitive product that lives up to its maker's claims, and at what cost?
And at what price would you sell your product to amortize that cost?

If you think you're capable of building a diagnostic tool to compete with GS-911 on equal terms, and doing it as a one-man operation, then by all means, go ahead. I think the entire BMW DIY community would be watching with great interest.
Me, I give you two weeks before you're back here crying 'Mea Culpa'. :wink:

Welcome to the forum Primo. Like your handle and your first post. ;)
 

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Gordon, thanks for the welcome!

I stumbled across this post almost by accident. I couldn't believe what I was reading, and couldn't just let it go.

I've been doing diagnostic repairs on motor vehicles since 1997, and I've been in close contact with the software dev world for the last eight.
Believe me when I say it: I know what it takes to put out a device that actually does what its seller says it will. And I know just how far off the mark the vast majority of people are when they say "What a rip-off. It can't be that hard."
 

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Yup, and depending upon how much work you do yourself the tool more than pays for itself in savings of time, aggravation, and money. Hexcode support is wonderful too.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
<incoherent rambling...>
Hey gurl...

No, I am not going to say my fault or any such thing.

The GS-911 is overpriced.

The MS works just fine, though the interface is German translated into English as opposed to the 911's being English first.

The MS is easier to take along on the road and does the same stuff the 911 does.

The information for the BMW system is available if you know where to look (and, I believe, is mandated by law).

Go to any automotive store and you'll find a range of scanning tools all over the price range that all do basically the same thing, and now people can buy simple scanners for cheap and pair them with even cheaper apps for smartphones and tablets.

How many people do you think it takes to write such software? Have YOU EVER written code or developed an app?

To add further insult, the makers of the 911 have written in their own FAQs that if you are rich enough to have bought ten BMWs, then you are rich enough to buy a new 911 or "upgrade" to the "professional" license:

The VIN numbers entered into your VIN-table or VIN-list of your GS-911 interface, are one-time-writable and CANNOT be removed. Our opinion is that once an Enthusiast owns or has owned 10 BMW motorcycles, he/she can afford the upgrade to a Professional version. See FAQ
Do you think that there are 50 people working to make these 911s? Do you think that there is a sweet old grandmother sewing all of those cases? Do you think dozens of people are operating heavy machinery creating the plastic cases? Do you think they are running a massive server farm to "analyze" or "reverse-engineer" the BMW CANbus network? Nope. There are probably a few people working at wherever the office is and most of the other parts are outsourced to China.

I've been doing diagnostic repairs on motor vehicles since 1997, and I've been in close contact with the software dev world for the last eight.
Believe me when I say it: I know what it takes to put out a device that actually does what its seller says it will. And I know just how far off the mark the vast majority of people are when they say "What a rip-off. It can't be that hard."
Gee, that's what EVERY business will say when pushing something overpriced. Am I saying it can be done in 5 minutes? No, but when I was in school, me and a team of 3 others, setup a complete e-commerce business as our final project for the class. I believe it was over 6 weeks but that included coming up with a business type, product, writing various financial reports (such as would be given to investors or banks), hierarchies, supply management, and finally, a completely functional webstore that included product search, a shopping cart, and payment processing. Afterwards, we had to give a formal presentation of all of this to the faculty of the business school. I did the coding myself because that's my strength and we were the top finishers (probably due to the fact that our store was fully functional and that our business plans were more professional). And we did this as FUCKING COLLEGE STUDENTS taking OTHER COURSEWORK and WORKING REAL JOBS. Also, this was done (in 2005), when e-commerce was nothing like it is today, so it wasn't like we had a lot of inspiration to go by.

For the record, I now own a 911 because a friend, who had a '17 RT and had a 911 Wi-Fi, traded it to me for my OEM '16 RT seat (which I never use anyhow).

The reason someone would normally spend more money on something like a helmet, seat, and riding gear, is because you interface with it every single time you get on the bike. There is a huge difference between an $800 Arai and a $199 Shark. Unless your bike is a PoS and is constantly breaking down, how often do you plan on using that 911? And seriously, for 99% of its use, it's just being used to reset the service reminder and reading/clearing fault codes...something my inexpensive MS does quite well, though you do have to get used to using the German abbreviations instead of just plain English. (If you have the BMW Service DVD, you'll know what I mean)

So yes, I do wrench on my own vehicles and yes, the cost of my tools, in the aggregate, have cost more than a few dollars, but it also saves money by not having to take any of them to the shop.
 

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Gordon, thanks for the welcome!

I stumbled across this post almost by accident. I couldn't believe what I was reading, and couldn't just let it go.

I've been doing diagnostic repairs on motor vehicles since 1997, and I've been in close contact with the software dev world for the last eight.
Believe me when I say it: I know what it takes to put out a device that actually does what its seller says it will. And I know just how far off the mark the vast majority of people are when they say "What a rip-off. It can't be that hard."
Yep, been doing my own wrenching on everything for 47 years and I have tools that old passed down. My 911WiFi paid for itself the first use in replacing my throttle position potentiometer and adjusting it so I have no qualms on its cost. It works, and works well and there are no German abbreviations to interpret which is just lazy coding IMO. If you actually want to sell to a foreigh market, have a 100% functional English French etc version. That is worth some additional to me and why I have a 911 and not a cheap more difficult to understand knock off. It may work but this review was enough for me personally to steer away from it. I also think the 10 VIN enthusiast limit is a smart company move in preserving their market share without such strict limitations as one per VIN. It isn't as if this thing works on every car from 1996 on. It is a niche market and fills the gap at a price point that is recoverable in time and allows a larger personal garage or small club or group to share one tool and the VIN limitation is only for the service minder so you can use it as many times as you want on as many bikes as you want to do repairs and not use any VIN slots. My LT has no minders so I use no slots personally but have a few local friends that I have given a slot to. Is it a rip off, no. Is there a cheaper solution, yes. Same with cheap bearings. $6 Chinese or $30 SKF. They both do the same thing but you choose which one you want on your front wheel at 80+ MPH. Maybe not a great comparison but hey, it is 1:48am and I am tired. :wave
 
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