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Old 04-05-2024, 14:49   #1
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Best Free Android Charting Software

I'm looking at purchasing a new (used) sailboat and before I do that and dump a load of $$$ into a chart plotter and associated electronics, I just want to play around with some Android charting software. I go to Play Store and there are a ton of different apps. Can anyone recommend one that's actually totally free?
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Old 04-05-2024, 15:15   #2
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Re: Best Free Android Charting Software

"Totally free" is an unrealistic expectation. As far as low cost, I like AquaMaps.
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Old 04-05-2024, 16:10   #3
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Re: Best Free Android Charting Software

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Originally Posted by CaptWho View Post
I'm looking at purchasing a new (used) sailboat and before I do that and dump a load of $$$ into a chart plotter and associated electronics, I just want to play around with some Android charting software. I go to Play Store and there are a ton of different apps. Can anyone recommend one that's actually totally free?

The app isn't free, but the charts for the US are: OpenCPN.


https://play.google.com/store/apps/d...pencpn.opencpn
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Old 04-05-2024, 16:17   #4
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Re: Best Free Android Charting Software

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The app isn't free, but the charts for the US are: OpenCPN.


https://play.google.com/store/apps/d...pencpn.opencpn
OpenCPN is indeed free of $ fee. Learning curve is very steep so cost is in frustration and brain cells. Good luck with it.
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Old 04-05-2024, 16:58   #5
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Re: Best Free Android Charting Software

This is the one. https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=org.opencpn.opencpn
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Old 04-05-2024, 19:41   #6
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Re: Best Free Android Charting Software

"Best" is highly subjective. In the free or low cost category the popular apps are:

OpenCPN- Free, powerful, and a learning curve. You will hate it or love it.
Navionics- Cheap (even with the price increases) and simple. Lacks features, but many like it because it is simple and because it uses Navionics charts.
AquaMaps- Highly recommend by many on this forum. I've not used it.
iNavX- I tried this one, but don't use it anymore. More features than Navionics, and still easier than OpenCPN. It crashed a lot, so I quite using it.
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Old 04-05-2024, 20:18   #7
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Re: Best Free Android Charting Software

I use these three in no particular order. All very basic but easy to use and the learning curve is very simple. Unlike the OpenCPN which after 5 years of trying to learn I'm ready to give up on for good.
Polaris
Marine Ways
SailFreeGPS.
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Old 05-05-2024, 08:16   #8
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Dave Register Android OpenCPN: one-time $10 fee (not subscription) plus FREE NOAA USA charts.



Full-featured with some learning time required.



Our go-to Android charting app. (Even better on a PC.)
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Old 05-05-2024, 09:44   #9
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Re: Best Free Android Charting Software

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OpenCPN is indeed free of $ fee. Learning curve is very steep so cost is in frustration and brain cells. Good luck with it.
Where do you get it for free? It's $9.95 on Google Play Store.
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Old 05-05-2024, 10:30   #10
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Re: Best Free Android Charting Software

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Where do you get it for free? It's $9.95 on Google Play Store.
Interesting. On the OpenCPN website (OpenCPN.org) versions are listed for Windows, iPad, Linus, etc., but I don't see one for Android.

I use OpenCPN on a Windows laptop and am VERY happy with it. American charts are free but Canadian, and others (European, etc.) are not. They can be obtained, for a price, from ocharts.org.
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Old 05-05-2024, 12:46   #11
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Re: Best Free Android Charting Software

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Interesting. On the OpenCPN website (OpenCPN.org) versions are listed for Windows, iPad, Linus, etc., but I don't see one for Android.

I use OpenCPN on a Windows laptop and am VERY happy with it. American charts are free but Canadian, and others (European, etc.) are not. They can be obtained, for a price, from ocharts.org.
Apparently they only charge for the Android version... Weird
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Old 05-05-2024, 12:52   #12
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Re: Best Free Android Charting Software

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Originally Posted by Island Time O25 View Post
I use these three in no particular order. All very basic but easy to use and the learning curve is very simple. Unlike the OpenCPN which after 5 years of trying to learn I'm ready to give up on for good.
Polaris
Marine Ways
SailFreeGPS.
Are these all adware?
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Old 05-05-2024, 13:27   #13
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Re: Best Free Android Charting Software

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Are these all adware?
NVM, I went ahead and installed them. Polaris just crashed when I installed it. Marine Ways seems to work, but the charts are pretty low rez. SailFreeGPS is subscription-lobotimized adware, so I guess that Marine Ways will have to do. I'll play around with it for a while.
I'm using a Fire tablet, so if I ever do get out on the water with it, maybe I'll consider coughing up the cash for OpenCPN
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Old 05-05-2024, 13:32   #14
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Re: Best Free Android Charting Software

I personally use and paid for the OpenCPN Android app with every free raster chart from the US Gov. I vastly prefer how the raster charts look and the information they provide, but I realize that some day I will have to move to the clunky vector charts. Just be aware that the ENC charts from NOAA are missing lots of valuable information found on the old raster charts.
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Old 05-05-2024, 13:35   #15
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Re: Best Free Android Charting Software

Update on MarineWays. Turns out it's adware too, but it doesn't seem to be lobotomized.
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