Gone are those days when heavy equipments like radars and anemometers forecas the weather and predicted the changes in the sea. The entire world has shrunk to the size of one’s palm, ipads and android powered phones and tablet rule the roost. Sailing has benefited a lot from these advancements in technology. Sailing Apps have virtually put the radars out of use. Whether you need weather advice and forecasting, knot guides, flag signal information, racing rules or even a whole social sailing community, they are all available at your fingertips.
Here are some of the phenomenal sailing apps by Apple:
iGrib is a GRIB (GRdded Binary) file viewer for the iPad and iPhone. It allows you to see the same data that the professionals use for forecasting. This app is particularly valuable for people like sailors who require a longer range forecast.
Sailing and Boating Community
Cruisersforum.com is the leading online community for Sailboat owners, Cruisers and Boaters. This app allows you to access the forums on your iPhone or iPad so you can post questions from the dock, bay or anytime aboard. This app also enables you to check our classifieds for currently available boats or crew positions get the up to date information on navigation and keep up with the latest innovations from boat builders.
Signal Flags Info
Signal Flags Info contains images of all 40 of the international code flags, along with abbreviated usage descriptions for each flag. The app is designed to be used as a reference tool for recognition of the flags and interpretation of their meanings when displayed by merchant ships, warships, fishing vessels and private yachts.
RYA Handy Racing Rules
Handy Racing Rules is a quick reference tool for the most common Racing Rules of Sailing, a mobile application equivalent to the very popular RYA Handy Guide. The text for the Rules Dispute Best Practice from the RYA is also included. All rules shown are referenced against the ISAF Racing Rules. Beautifully illustrated with diagrams and short, clear text. Quickly check and remind yourself about racing rules, right-of-way, room, penalties, signals and protest procedures. It includes the principles, limitations, obstructions penalties and incidents and protests. It is available in English, Spanish and Swedish.
iPhone Marine Navigator
The new ‘iPhone Marine Navigator’ contains embedded Electronic Nautical Charts (ENC) from NOAA and Corps of Engineers compressed to store the largest coverage. You can transform your iPhone in a chart plotter with best NOAA-USACE, ENC S57 cartography; which includes Coastline, Anchoring areas, Fishing areas, Restriction areas, Obstructions, Rocks, Buoys, Beacons, Lights, Depth contours (with values displayed in real time on map), Spot Soundings and more. Every effort is made to be as accurate as possible when presenting information for every sea area.
Tide Graph HD
Tide Graph HD uses the harmonic predictions from thousands of coastal stations and presents them in a fun and interactive graph. And now, in version 2.0 you also get an intuitive graph that shows sunrise, sunset, moonrise, moonset, and moon phase at a glance. Save recent locations, find locations using GPS location, and save graphs for later.
Tides have a great influence on the lives of boaters, fishermen, surfers, coastal communities, marine life, and vacationers just to name a few. Directly or indirectly, the great flow of our massive ocean bodies of water impact the daily lives of everyone on this planet.
Here are some Sailing Apps for Android powered platforms:
It’s a low-cost Android app that like a chart plotter shows you your boat’s position on a chart, assuming your Android smartphone or tablet has an internal or external GPS receiver, and offers several navigational functions. It uses standard NOAA raster charts, the same as many other apps – which display the same as standard paper charts.
Navionics Marine & Lakes
For its relatively low price, Marine & Lakes provides a wealth of features and functions. It saves space on your device by using vector charts (rather than raster charts such as in MX Mariner), so you don’t have to download charts unless you head for a new region. Vector charts have less information and labeling, however, and many sailors prefer raster charts that match the appearance traditional paper NOAA charts.
Marine Charts Lite
The enticement here is that while the app is free, the method by which you download chart sections for use is so clunky that if you want to use this app in more than just a tiny geographical area, you’re motivated to upgrade to the Marine Charts HD version, sold for $9.99, to avoid the slowness and problems of the free downloads. So it’s not actually free except for those who boat in only a small geographical area that can be more easily downloaded for offline use on the boat – or for people who are constantly connected (a risky thing to trust on a boat).
Compiled by Vignesh Iyer.