Articles: Navigation,Cruising

Boater's Picks for Favourite Apps on the iPad - Part 4: Connecting With Your Electronics

The great app ideas just keep coming! Thank you for your suggestions and recommendations. As a reminder from parts 1-3, I gathered a bunch of my boating friends and we talked apps. If an app was mentioned by three different boaters then it made the list. Many of these apps provide a free version; however, I have included the price for the full version.

NMEAremote by zapfware ($18.99) allows you to connect your iPad to your vessel's network and navigation system.  Whether it is navigation data, wind speed, or water depth, NMEAremote shows everything you need to know at a glance.  Connect to all your NMEA devices over WLAN with a NMEA/RS232 - WiFi converter such as "iMux", "iAIS", "Seamate 1A LITE", or a computer with the appropriate software.

A less expensive option is iNmea by Let's Create ($2.99) which is a replicator application that catches instrument data from a boat and presents them on the iPad.  To make it work, your instruments must be able to communicate in NMEA 0183 format over a bus, and a device that is able to collect this data from the bus and transmit them by WiFi must be connected to that bus. Again, it could be a device like SeaMate or a computer with appropriate software installed.

A similar app is MID WiFi by Veera Solutions Oy ($11.99) which allows you to use your iPad as an advanced marine instrument display instead of buying an external display. MID WiFi presents the basic information from the navigation system, the angle of heel, and the predicted boat speed.  MID WiFi receives the data (NMEA0183) over the WiFi and/or from the internal compass and GPS. The VPP (Velocity Prediction Program) tables can be easily copied and pasted to the application (email, web site). MarineVHF by Browncoat ($0.99) is a utility that lists the United States, Canada and International (ITU) VHF CHANNELS, frequencies, usage, and protocols. It does NOT stream VHF bands. Look forward to part 5 coming soon!

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