I have received the hardware, what next?

Note; You can start building your new tour in the Toureditor without the hardware being present.

As soon as you receive the hardware from us, you can finalize the tour by connecting the IDentifiers (triggers) to the stops in your tour. You need to connect at least one IDentifier to each stop in your tour. Every IDentifier has a unique number which you can find on the back of the IDentifier (for example EF:FF:FF:43).

There will be 1 or more IDentifiers with a language/country flag, these need to be connected as a Start IDentifier for the different languages in which you provide the tour. (Note; you need a different IDentifier for each language).

When all the stops are added in the tour (have an IDentifier connected and contain an audio file) you need to “publish” the new tour. After that you can mount the IDentifiers next to the objects in the exhibition.

The rest of the installation is very simple;

  • Connect the Dockingstations to the Sync Console or Syncbox that we have provided and plug everything into the power socket.
    Note; a Sync Console will already be installed and linked to your site. A Syncbox needs to be connected by the customer (see instructions)
  • Insert the Podcatchers firmly
  • Connect the Sync Console or Syncbox to a wired internet connection (note the whole set up needs to stay connected to power and internet 24/7)
  • Start the Sync Console or Syncbox
  • Log on to the Podcatcher Portal, go to “sync” and press Sync Now.
  • Now the content will be synced on to the Podcatchers.

We have made an instruction video available as well. In this particular video we show you how to install the setup with loose, new Dockingstations and a Syncbox.

The 10 Podcatchers in a Dockingstation are synced one after another, but all connected Dockingstations start and sync simultaneously.

When a Podcatcher light turns green, you can take it out and start testing your new tour.

Every day our server connects automatically to the PC provided, and checks the Podcatchers to ensure updates are written on to the Podcatcher, to restore Podcatchers which have an error and to retrieve the logs and statistics from the Podcatchers to add to the Analytics.

Please feel free to contact helpdesk@guideid.com if you have any questions.

Introduction to the Podcatcher hardware

This article intends to familiarize you with the concepts that make the Podcatcher work. It’s a short introduction about our different hardware products that are needed for a working audio guide.


The Podcatcher is our main device and visitors use it by pointing at an IDentifier, much like a TV remote. The Podcatcher will then play the audio associated with it. The IDentifier has a sticker on the back with a code; it sends this code out using infrared signals. By linking this code to a stop in the Podcatcher Portal, the Podcatcher knows which audio to play when it’s pointed at an IDentifier.


IDentifiers are the small square devices used to – as its name implies – identify which audio should be played when a Podcatcher receives its signal.

There are a handful of different kinds of IDentifiers. The most basic and most common one is called an Object IDentifier. It’s typically used in conjunction with an object, artwork or room. Visitors point their Podcatcher at the IDentifier, and the Podcatcher starts playing the audio. An IDentifier can be used in multiple Tours, for example the adults’ and childrens’ Tours can use the same IDentifier but with different audio.

Starting an audio tour is done with a Start IDentifier. These start a Tour in a given language and usually have a country’s flag printed on the front to indicate what language it is. A particular Start IDentifier can only be used once per audio tour, because otherwise the Podcatcher would not know which audio tour to start.

There are other IDentifiers as well. For more information about all the IDentifiers, please read the article about IDentifiers.

Dockingstation and sync console

Podcatchers have to be recharged periodically. This is done, along with installing any new software for the player and receiving new audio files that have been published, by putting them into a docking station. The docking station is connected to power and to a computer with the Podcatcher Sync software installed; a Sync Console. By default, the sync console will attempt to synchronize files daily at 19:00 (7 PM) local time.

If you want more in depth information about all the products, go to the homepage and unfold the tabs under ‘The Podcatcher System – Hardware’

Or read the Introduction to the Podcatcher Portal, the online system where you can built your audio tour.


The Podcatcher is Guide ID’s audio device. It’s designed to be simple to use and sturdy enough to last a while. This page intends to detail what it can do and how the most common activities the Podcatcher can perform, work.

Essential features

IR receiver:
While concealed, the infrared receiver is located at the very tip at the top of the device – like a TV remote.

The speaker is located at the top of the front of the device – like a phone.

The Podcatcher stores its content, firmware and log files on an SD card inside the casing.

These three things, in essence, enable the Podcatcher to play the audio it needs to. The circuit board handles things like playing MP3s and finding the correct content to play.


The basic Podcatcher has three buttons:

  • The left button acts both as a ‘volume down’ button when playing regular audio clips, and as ‘option A’ when in a Clip that has A/B/C options.
  • The middle button acts both as a ‘pause/play’ button and as ‘option B’.
  • The right button acts both as ‘volume up’ and as ‘option C’.

With just these buttons, you can create not just informative experiences, but also quizzes, surveys and more.

Visitor usage

At the most basic level, all a visitor needs to do is use the Podcatcher as a hybrid between a TV remote (pointing at IDentifiers) and a phone (listening to it). The typical visitor experience looks something like this:

  1. Receive a Podcatcher, either from a handout point or from self-service.
  2. Point the Podcatcher at a Start IDentifier with the desired language (read more on those, here).
  3. Experience the museum with the added benefit of having a mind-blowing audio tour.
  4. (optional) Register the Podcatcher with MapMyVisit so the visitor can look at the tour again at home.
  5. Return the Podcatcher to the museum.

As you can see, super simple stuff.

Syncing (charging battery & updating content)

Podcatchers have to be recharged periodically. This is done, along with installing any new software for the player and receiving new audio files that have been published, by putting them into a docking station connected to a computer with the Podcatcher Sync software – a sync console. By default, the sync console will attempt to synchronize files daily at 19:00 (7 PM) local time.

To sync a Podcatcher, it has to be placed in a Docking station connected to a working Sync Console first. Then you can either:

Podcatcher settings

The Podcatcher has a handful of settings you can tweak to suit your needs, most notably settings related to speaker volume. Refer to this article for information.


For an overview of the features and measurements of the Podcatcher, please take a look at the Specsheet of the Podcatcher.


There are a handful of different IDentifiers available. This page intends to distinguish them and explain what each of them is used for.

Object IDentifier

The Object IDentifier is the most basic of the bunch, but also the most common one. This type of IDentifier simply sends out an infrared code – the code is unique to each IDentifier, and is printed on the back of the device – which the Podcatcher can pick up and interpret. Codes look like “EF:FE:1C:AE”; four sets of two characters.

Object IDentifiers can be linked to one Stop per Tour, but can be used in multiple Tours. Further, they can’t be used as both a Start IDentifier and an Object IDentifier at the same time.

Write down the code printed on the back and link it to a Stop in the TourEditor. Place the IDentifier near the Stop – next to a painting, at the entrance to a room, and so on – and point the Podcatcher at it. The Podcatcher will now play that Stop’s content.

Battery lifespan
The battery on an IDentifier lasts for quite a while – under optimal conditions they can keep going for upwards of two years. They will eventually run out though, but it’s fairly simple to replace them.

Start IDentifiers

Start IDentifiers are essentially Object IDentifiers, but they have a flag printed on the label to designate which language they represent. A Start IDentifier, as the name implies, starts a Tour. Coupled with the flag, they represent the start of a Tour in a given language.

Start IDentifiers have the same kind of code as Object IDentifiers, but a Start IDentifier’s code can only be linked to a Site once – otherwise a Podcatcher wouldn’t know which Tour to start (or in which language).

Read more about starting a tour (and Start IDentifiers) here.

AV-Sync IDentifiers

AV-Sync IDentifiers are more complex than the Object IDentifier, because they need to send out IR signals not just for their IDentifier code, but also the time stamp for the video. To be more precise, they are connected to an AV-Sync box which does most of the legwork, but an AV-Sync IDentifier can’t operate on its own either way. Refer to the AV-Sync user manual for an in-depth explanation of what the AV-Sync IDentifier does and how it can be installed.

Syncconsole / Syncbox & Dockingstation

Podcatchers have to be recharged periodically. This is done, along with installing any new software for the player and receiving new audio files that have been published, by putting them into a docking station. The docking station is connected to power and to a PC with the Podcatcher Sync software installed. A computer configured in such a way is known as a ‘Sync Console’ and is provided by us. All customers which already have our system in use (since before June 2020)  will have a Sync Console at their location. If they would like to add Podcathers to their basic setup, or for a temporary exhibition, they will receive a Sync Console.
Please have a look on this page to learn more about the Sync Console

Since June 2020 we are also implementing a new product, called the Syncbox. This has the same functionality as the Sync Console but is not a windows based PC, but a compact computer, designed by Guide ID.
Every new customer will receive the Syncbox.
Please have a look on this page to learn more about the Syncbox

For every location where you’d like to synchronize your Podcatchers (such as a hand-out point) a Sync Console or Syncbox needs to be set up to be able to sync them. By default, the Sync Console and Syncbox will attempt to synchronize files on a daily basis at 19:00 (7 PM) local time.

If you want to add your own PC as an additional Sync Console please see these links; click here to learn more about installing the required software, or click here to go to the computer specifications page