Hi Andre, thanks for your comment.
Let me clarify. I meant that you as a person have access to our Discord server. Nothing on the raspberry pi is communicating to Discord. No libraries or APIs are referring to Discord.
The “Get it free” is indeed referring to the free Beta access. As of now it is not decided how much it will last. It will probably be longer than 1 month in which case you can either get a new free 1 month license or I would most likely just extend all existing licenses.
I am not going to lie, I put a lot of thought and effort in this project to make it easy an reliable to use and at some point I will ask for some sort of subscription. Currently I am developing a lot of new features, but my main focus right now is to build a community and hear what you guys have to say about it, discuss new features with you and when Drone Mate reaches to a state where I am happy with what it has to offer then it will start requiring some sort of subscription. I can assure you that everybody who participated in the beta testing will not be forgotten and I will do my best to repay when that moment comes. I understand that the packages page might sound “sleazy”, but really my point was to make it clear that it is indeed free to use for now (no sleazy “give me your credit card and I will charge you 1 month from now when you forget”), but on the other hand I wanted to make it clear that at some point this will no longer be free so people dont feel mislead.
As for ZeroTier. I agree with Corrado_Steri. As easy as it is to use and setup, it has major drawbacks. If your APN does not allow direct connections (and by the looks of it most of them dont), then ZeroTier routes the traffic through their servers which in most cases is another country than yours. This introduces a network latency of about 150ms in my tests.
In the latest DroneMate update I have implemented support for OpenVPN server connection. This way you can either use an OpenVPN service you trust, or easily host your own. In my case this dropped the network latency to about 10-35ms (depends where the nearest 4G tower is, which is pretty much as low as you can get it. Before anyone jumps again - I know that OpenVPN has other issues. It is not exactly the most lightweight VPN implementation.
I am doing my best to research and include support for services that are both free, easy to use and do the job as good as they can. There are paid peer-to-peer services which I can integrate and will do the job flawlessly, but that would definitely affect the price in a significant way.
Currently I am checking with Tailscale if it would be within their terms and conditions to include support for their service. It works very similarly to ZeroTier, but manages to establish a direct connection between DroneMate and my mobile ground station. If everything goes well, I expect to release an update which will include Tailscale integration in the coming weeks.