We all love to get out on the water and disconnect, but probably we still have a soft spot in our hearts for the apps. It’s amazing how many useful applications you can store on your smartphone or tablet and there are some really cool apps that can make life afloat easier. You need to check out the resources to have a safe, healthy sail. Digital assistants could help you.
A large number of apps have been developed to assist sailors, but you need to be aware of these facts:
- You are going to need a smartphone and/or a tablet.
- Unfortunately, neither of them really likes the water.
- You are going to need some internet coverage. Some apps need an internet connection to work, and others will work fine offline.
- Navigation apps are all battery hogs.
Apps for weather and tides
Sailors are obsessed with the weather. There are a number of different sources, and often we look at a variety of different systems to get a better feel of what might be heading our way. The availability, frequency and accuracy of weather forecasts available to the cruising sailor have truly changed a lot. There are apps to plan:
- currents and
You have all information you need always available in seconds. Forecasts are nowadays so detailed that might easily seduce you. What is said to happen more than seven days ahead is likely to be little more than guesswork. In all forecasts, there is much approximation and estimation of the physics. How the gathered data is dealt with differs slightly as it is run through the different computer models. Check as many online forecasts as you like – but don’t forget to check the synoptic chart as well.
Maps, Charts and Navigation applications
Maps and charts are probably one of the most essential uses of smartphones and tablets for sailing and boating. The development of navigation apps has advanced so much that tablets are now used by many sailors as the primary means of navigation on board. The perfect navigation app has not been developed yet, but some are really good. The user friendly interfaces that app-based products provide are mostly superior to those found on chartplotters. There are many good navigation apps available, choose the one offering features that are relevant to your style of sailing. Some tips for setting up and using your smartphone or tablet as a navigation device:
- check whether the chosen app includes chart updates and how they are accessed,
- check which metric units are used,
- use satellite image layers,
- ensure that you have downloaded the charts for ports of refuge,
- set the value of velocity vector to one hour for help in predicting tidal offsets.
Move all your gauges to one display
You probably know the feeling of checking a big variety of sensors on your boat all the time. We don’t believe it is one of your favourite sailing tasks. Set alarms on your smartphone and relax by using Simarine monitoring solutions. Displaying battery and tanks levels, temperatures and barograph, Pico app will change your boating world – it replaces up to 20 gauges:
- all in one system,
- all on one display and
- all on your smartphone.
Check the Pico display in action along side the smartphone app. Sailing can improve quality of life, they say it’s linked to increased self-confidence. So grab your favourite sailing shoes and hit the docks!