I've had an FA-50 AIS transceiver in our EB47 for a while. It works quite well. I've been able to see everything else nearby if they're squawking AIS. All was well, right?
Not quite. Turns out my unit was not actually SENDING our own AIS info. This is mentioned in another post here, but have been missed by some:
I only knew I wasn't sending because a friend I noticed on AIS said he couldn't see me on his AIS.
The short story is GPS satellites get replaced now and then and the software in the FA-50 wasn't able to keep pace. They've released an update that can be uploaded to it, using a PC connected into the Ethernet network used by the FA-50 and other Furuno devices (radar, plotters, etc). It cannot be loaded from a plotter. I used a laptop with a USB-ethernet adapter and a CAT5 ethernet cable plugged into a free port on the network hub. The update took only a few minutes to complete. This will keep it working until 2039.
Now my FA50 properly transmits as well as receives AIS information.
The point that may be missing in understanding this is AIS devices are apparently required to use their OWN
source of GPS information and will not
use anything else that might also be on the network.