That's just the coverage available on one particular website. (Other sites can have different data sources and different coverage.) Also, those rectangles just mean that there is some coverage within the rectangle. (Often, coverage is available around larger cities and a lot of the area is not covered.)
Furthermore, AIS is sometimes used for collision avoidance, so it is used for safety.
Whether or not you were ever a fan, it was a sad scene.
That's just capitalism. The sad thing is that the same thing is not happening to failed banks, insurance companies and investment companies.
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For example, my phone has a camera. Why doesn't my phone have a standard USB connector. Why didn't Bell or the manual tell me I can download photos over USB? Why isn't the cable included? (It can't be expensive.) Why am I charged for uploading photos over the air, the same amount as if I sent photos to someone? Why did Bell tell me that uploading is free and then charge me? Why is the camera such a piece of crap in terms of optical quality, JPEG artifacts and user interface?