In August of 2008 gCaptain forum member New3M made a brilliant suggestion for gCaptain to develop software for the iPhone. We loved the idea but wanted to make sure any software carrying the gCaptain name was of high quality and of use to mariners.
Fast forward to the summer of this year and the crew here at gCaptain decided that the best way to move forward on a high quality application was to make the development of the app a team effort. With this in mind we teamed up with the professional maritime data providers at MIS Development and the programing team at Refresh Media to create gTrax, Vessel Tracking For The iPhone.
What is gTrax?
gTrax harnesses MIS’s network of redundant secure, Automatic Information System (AIS), antennas to gather information directly from commercial ships and boats underway in the harbor. Once processed through MIS’s server the information is pushed out to your iPhone and the location of each ship is plotted on the app’s built in google map.
The vessel’s location is just the start. Each ship is color coded according to it’s speed and oriented by course giving you an accurate “heads-up” view of the marine traffic around you. Clicking on the vessel brings additional information including the ship’s destination, job function, navigational status and more.
Advanced sorting capabilities allow you to sort by the vessel’s name and function. For example, if you want to find the exact location of a ferry, you can select to view only “Passenger” vessels. If you know the name of a specific ferry simply type it in and the map will automatically center on the boat’s current location.
You can sort ships by type including:
– Cargo of Tanker (Large Commercials Ships)
– Passenger (Ferry’s & Cruise Ships)
– Law Enforcement (Coast Guard & Police)
– Oil Spill Response
– Fishing Boats
– Plus 14 other categories.
In addition the app tracks Super-yachts, Sailing Ships and Pleasure Boats equipped with AIS-B transmitters.
We are really excited about this application and I personally want to thank the myriad of people who made this possible including Steve Gordon, Moses Calouro, Doug Pine, the MAREX team, our forum members and, of course, Mike Schuler. It would not have been possible without the gCaptain community’s support.
So without any further delay please visit the iTunes store and download gTrax. then be sure to rate it 5 stars to personally thank all who where involved! To help kick-start the app… every forum member that writes a review of the application (good or bad but this week only) on the iTunes store will be sent a FREE gCaptain t-shirt and $5 Starbucks card as our thanks for supporting gCaptain. Just copy and past your review of the app in the comments below and Mike will contact you for your address.
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