Articles: Navigation,Communications

Boat Watch Pro and Boat Beacon

Boat Watch Pro and Boat Beacon

Today I am going to look at two very cool Apps.  If you don’t have your AIS up and running or perhaps, you don’t have AIS on board, there is a new app that allows you to point your iPhone camera at a boat and identify it.  Boat Watch Pro by Pocket Mariner Ltd., uses this amazing augmented reality mode to give you information on the vessel including where it is headed.  This App works on the iPad, iPhone or iPod Touch with iOS 7.0 or later and sells for $ 5.49.

Pocket Mariner Ltd. also offers an app, called Boat Beacon, that allows you to see and be seen.  It claims to be the only AIS ship plotting app to share your boat’s position, provide Collision Detection and use real-time data.  The beauty of this app is that it transmits as well as receives AIS and is the only app that continuously monitors Closest Point of Approach (CPA) calculations notifying you of potential collisions even when the app is in the background.  With transmit enabled, your boat will appear on other Boat Beacon devices.  It also provides local AIS data feeds via WiFi or USB with products like easyAIS, Digital Yacht, Lowrance, Simrad and B&G GoFree.

For the price, this App should be on everyone’s boat the only set back is that it does require an internet connection.  You do not need an MMSI to use Boat Beacon however if you want to be seen on Global AIS systems, like ShipFinder and Marine Traffic, you will need to have and use a DSC VHF with an MMSI number.  For more information and a link to get your MMSI number visit, http://www.pysystems.ca/articles/2013/01/22/three-good-reasons-to-get-a-mmsi/. This App is available for iProducts with iOS 6.1 or later and retails for $10.49, it is also available on Google Play for Android phones and tablets and retails for $9.99.

I especially like the fact that the CEO of this company developed this App after a near miss at sea!


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