Sailmate: avanced features

The short tutorial below is introducing you to a few of Sailmate advanced features:

Creating and managing your own user waypoints

Creating its own waypoints for specific locations is very useful.

To this end, when map is displayed, do a long press on the desired location. The regulated areas window will open to display the regulated areas list at this point, select the first button “Create User Waypoint”. You need only to enter the waypoint identifer you want to assign and a short description, check the latitude/longitude and adjust it if needed and then Save. You could from now on use this user waypoint during route creation.

When you click on an user waypoint on the map, you are able to add it to the route or perform a direct to it when in Navigatioon mode, but also to modify or delete it.

Download a topographic map

When Internet coverage is available, Sailmate will download as needed topographic maps for any place in the world. But this is not possible when boating without Internet access. You need then to download in advance the topographic data of your boating country to ensure consistent coverage (if you forgot this step, Sailmate will neverthless display a low resolution map).

At installation time, Sailmate will recommend to download the topographic map of your home country. If you are boating in other countries, we advice to download also their maps before boating.

To this end, go to Settings menu and then select “Manage charts”. A list of available charts will be proposed to you, you could select those you need. Topographic maps are generated from the worldwide reference OpenStreetMap data, they are all free of charge.

You could select several topographic charts, they will be downloaded and installed sequentially.

Download and activate nautical charts from chart suppliers

In standard mode, Airmate will dynamically create its own nautical map, by overlaying topographic map with nautical data (harbours, buoys, beacons, waypoints, lights…).

Next release of Sailmate will allow you to download official nautical maps from many suppliers and authorities.

Those charts will be downloaded using the same procedure than topographic maps: go to Settings menu and select “Manage charts”. If the chart is a paying one, you could purchase it online.

One such a chart overlay is downloaded, you will be able to activate it anytime. To this end, press the button “Layers” at the bottom right of the chart. You will be shown the list of downloaded chart overlays and could select the associated switch to active it.

When an nautical chart overlay is activated, it will replace both the topographic map and the Sailmate nautical data within its boundaries. This means that for example buoys, beacons and lights will no longer be displayed on top of the chart by Sailmate as the chart already embeds those data. But Sailmate is still providing active content, and will display the associated information with a single press or a long press is done. If you click on an harbour, you will still have the harbour popover window that will present you harbour weather, frequencies, and charts charts.

The “Layers” button includes a Chart Overlay switch to request Sailmate to display its own data on top of the nautical chart. This could lead to a cluttered display, but this function is very useful to compare nautical data from both sources. Sailmate data are updated more regularly than chart data.

Find out and memorize landmarks using Satellite chart mode

Sailmate map displays at startup nautical data on top of a topographic map.

Either during trip planning or later during trip review, it is useful to be able to look around to find and memorize landmarks.

Switch the map in “Satellite” mode using the Layers button at the bottom right of the map. The topographic map is replaced by a satellite view of the Earth you could zoom it to look at proeminent landmarks. To keep full awareness of nautical environment, all harbours, buoys and beacons, lights and regulated areas are still displayed on top of the satellite view.

Satellite mode is fetching data over Internet and is therefore not available during a trip without Internet access.

You could also switch to Satellite view when replaying the flight path of a recorded trip.

record and replay past trips

The plane button at the upper right of the Sailmate map toggles between Planning and Navigation mode. In Navigation mode, Sailmate will display actual boat position and navigation data: speed, track, next point distance and ETE.

When switched in Navigation mode, Sailmate is recording boat performance data during all the flight. Those data are saved when Sailmate is switched again in Planning mode at the end of the trip.

From the planned trip list displayed at launch, you could view the list of past trips by selecting the History button at the bottom of the screen. It is then possible to select one of the past trip to review it, replay the boat track on the map, and share the recorded trip with friends or boat instructor. The recorded trip data may be sent by email in GPX format to any recipient. GPX data may easily be imported in Google Earth or other tools.

Use Sailmate during boating instruction

Sailmate features are perfectly suited to help boating instruction:

  • first of all, Sailmate is a free app, helping student boaters to keep their hard earned money to pay for boating instruction or boat rental.
  • Sailmate is very easy to use without training and provides instant access to weather data, nautical information, helping student boaters to learn the good habit of always obtaining up-to-date information before boating.
  • It is not easy for student boaters to recognize on nautical maps the landmark he/she will use during his next trip. Thanks to Sailmate Satellite mode, viewing and memorizing landmarks will never be easier
  • Thanks to its flight recording and replay features, Sailmate will provide all needed data for an efficient review with the boating Instructor after the trip.