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Can the Apple Watch Extremely exchange your dive pc?

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For the previous few years, Apple’s wearables, together with the Apple Watch Sequence 8, have sported a water-resistance score which, kind of, ensures its survivability in water, as much as 164 toes (50 meters) deep. This makes it an ideal companion for monitoring your laps round a pool or for the occasional little bit of snorkeling.

Nevertheless, till not too long ago, taking an Apple Watch scuba diving was a sure-fire approach to make sure that you’d return to the floor with an costly paperweight strapped to your wrist: the {hardware} simply is not designed to face as much as the pressures exerted on it at leisure diving ranges—between 10 and 130 toes.

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The Apple Watch Extremely, nonetheless, is. The Extremely is rated for survival at depths of as much as 328 toes (100 meters) underwater. In actual fact, Apple was so sure of their new watch’s aquatic capabilities that they paired with one of many largest names in underwater tech—Oceanic—to rework the $799 wearable right into a full-blown dive pc.

How properly does it work in comparison with a traditional dive pc? As I am essentially the most certified author at Reviewed to search out out, I made a decision to… discover out.

Why ought to we hearken to you?

At Reviewed, all of our opinions are informed by experience and data--even the underwater ones.

As a result of, along with writing for Reviewed, I am additionally a Grasp Scuba Diver Coach (MSDT). I maintain over 20 certifications from PADI and have, at the least, 600 dives beneath my weight belt. I’ve labored as a Dive Grasp within the stunning blue waters off the coast of Costa Rica and as an teacher on Vancouver Island, Canada, certifying divers within the frigid ocean.

I do know diving and the tools it takes to do it safely.

What is the fuss about Oceanic+?

Whereas the Extremely is hard sufficient to put on deep beneath the floor of the water, for prolonged durations of time, it isn’t prepared for use as a dive pc proper out of the field.

To set it up as your dive buddy, you will must obtain Oceanic’s app, Oceanic+, to your iPhone, first. The app requires a subscription to get essentially the most out of it. (We’ll discuss extra about that in a bit.) First, I would I feel it is value mentioning why the truth that Oceanic is concerned in remodeling the Apple Watch Extremely right into a succesful dive pc is such an enormous deal.

Oceanic has a long history of making reliable dive computers for scuba professionals and enthusiasts.  Pairing with Apple to release their Oceanic+ app feels like a great fit.

Oceanic has a strong popularity within the dive group, with a long time of expertise in producing robust, dependable dive computer systems. I at the moment personal two dive computer systems, each made by Oceanic. My oldest, the Veo, is 14 years previous. I actually belief them with my life.

The one criticism I’ve about my Oceanic dive computer systems is, that whereas they work properly beneath the water, they are often irritating to make use of as soon as you have resurfaced. Downloading the information that the computer systems file from every of my dives is a clunky course of. The software program is lower than user-friendly, making it tough, if not at occasions, seemingly unattainable, to switch my dive information from my Oceanic units to my laptop computer.

The notion that the Oceanic+ app might deal with this drudgery—transferring my dive logs, routinely, from the Apple Watch Extremely to my iPhone—actually excited me after I first heard about it.

what we like

The strap slaps

Apple's Ocean Band has a simple, but utterly ingenious adjustable clasp that makes adjusting the band to be used with wet or drysuits an absolute breeze.

Dive {hardware} must be robust, adjustable and cozy—an advanced combine at the very best of occasions. The Apple Watch Extremely checks off all of those containers (and is a handsome watch, too). My favourite characteristic the Extremely provides is one thing that, maybe, many individuals may overlook: the Extremely’s Ocean Band.

This rubber, dive-oriented strap’s ingenious clasp system permits divers to customized match the band’s {hardware} to accommodate what they’re sporting whereas they’re within the water, be it naked pores and skin, a wetsuit for a little bit of extra heat, or a drysuit and underwear. The strap’s {hardware} is simple to regulate and, as soon as in place, stays put.

Computerized dive logging

The Oceanic+ app can record a treasure trove of data on your dives, which you can look back on, later.

For somebody who struggles to maintain correct information of diving (which is necessary for taking additional coaching or demonstrating expertise for tougher dive websites), the Extremely’s automated recording characteristic is absolutely interesting. After a dive, the very last thing I wish to do is use my logbook and pen or fiddle with cables and a laptop computer with the intention to switch my pc’s information. That point needs to be reserved for recounting what you noticed when you have been beneath the water along with your dive buddies.

With the Apple Watch Extremely and the Oceanic+ app, all the small print of my check dives have been routinely recorded and saved on the app. After a dive, the watch transfers the recorded dive information to the Oceanic+ app just like the dive location, dive profile (a graph that exhibits time plotted towards depth), time, ascent price, max depth and minimal water temperature. If I wish to add any feedback in regards to the dive or make notes about my gear, like the quantity of weight I used on a dive, all I would like is my iPhone.

Climate and tide integration

For shore diving, having correct details about dive situations determines if the dive occurs. Dive planning is easy with the app, supplying you with tide predictions and climate for the world you are contemplating diving in.

Whereas the prediction window supplied by the app is small (solely overlaying the subsequent day or so,) the data the Oceanic+ app supplied is detailed and as correct as the information served up by the quite a few climate and tide data apps and web sites that I seek the advice of when organising a shore dive. As long as I used to be on the lookout for situations data for the day of my dive or a dive developing within the subsequent 24 hours, I felt that the data supplied by Oceanic+ was correct.

We have solely simply begun

On the time that I wrote this overview, Oceanic was taking pre-orders for his or her new Sensible Housing. An iPhone case designed to resist the pressures the Oceanic+ seems to be solely the start of a relationship between Apple and Oceanic.

What we do not like

Additional price for Oceanic App+

Nobody likes to proceed to pay for one thing they personal. Whereas the Oceanic+ App is free to obtain and comes packing quite a few free features to make use of in your dives, reminiscent of dive depth/most depth, dive/exercise time monitoring, a restricted logbook and the power to look again on how the overall quantity Of dives you have taken utilizing the app, you will must spend money on a subscription with the intention to entry its dive pc performance.

Having a subscription to Oceanic+ unlocks necessary must-have metric monitoring like decompression information, these 72-hour climate, temperature and tide forecasts I discussed loving earlier, dive situations studies and tissue loading, which gives a diver with an thought of ​​how a lot nitrogen in is of their our bodies—an necessary issue for avoiding decompression illness.

Having already paid to buy an Apple Watch Extremely, some divers might discover this extra price stings like a Portuguese Man-of-Warfare tentacle being dragged throughout your naked leg. Provided that different dive computer systems, together with these made by Oceanic, work simply nice with no subscription, the app’s pay-to-play could possibly be a turn-off for some divers.

That stated, Oceanic tries to make paying harm as little as doable by offering quite a few totally different tiers of service to select from. On the time that this overview was written, the app provided a number of subscription choices. For people: $9.99 per thirty days or $79.99 per 12 months. For these with as much as 5 divers of their Household Sharing group, it is also doable to select up an annual subscription for $129.

restricted logging

Throughout testing, Oceanic+’s GPS logging precisely recorded my two snorkeling classes, marking my shore entrance on a tidy map. Nevertheless, my shore dive, which I began about two blocks down the street, didn’t file a GPS level, a shock after I returned to my automotive to test the dive on my iPhone. I assume that this was a technical glitch and never the norm.

I want to assume, contemplating the interconnected world we reside in, there can be a strategy to share dive log data with different divers—telling others about an ideal dive spot is likely one of the greatest methods to construct group in our sport—or so as to add photographs to a log. However, on the time that I examined the app, Oceanic+ didn’t seem to have this characteristic.

That stated, these latter two factors can be ‘nice-to-haves’, and never failures of the Oceanic+ app.

Cannot go it alone

The Oceanic+ app clearly states it isn’t comfy with you utilizing the Apple Watch Extremely as your solely pc on a dive. It advises you should put on a second machine in your underwater journey or, plan your dive utilizing tables. Whereas I, and a lot of the divers I do know, solely put on a single pc whereas on a dive (counting on the gauges hooked up to my tanks and my dive buddies’ computer systems as backups) I see the place Apple and Oceanic are coming from. Whereas the Apple Watch Extremely is a succesful piece of {hardware}, it is liable to failure, the identical as some other digital machine. Having a backup to the Extremely, or with the ability to use the Extremely as a backup to a devoted dive pc, provides one other layer of security that might enable you safely ascend again to the floor within the wake of an emergency.

The Oceanic+ app can’t exchange your dive pc

Since each Apple and Oceanic advise towards utilizing the Apple Watch Extremely and Oceanic+ app to function your sole dive pc, it might be irresponsible and probably harmful for us to disagree.

That stated, with its wonderful climate situation and tide monitoring, automated log syncing between the Extremely and the iPhone, and the dive metrics it begins offering as quickly as you hit the water, utilizing one to enrich your current dive pc’s capabilities is an absolute win . (It is also a wonderful smartwatch top-side, in addition.)

For those who’re a diver who already owns an Extremely, or are excited about shopping for one, including the Oceanic+ app to your digital instrument package, even with having to pay for a subscription, will doubtless make you content.

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