by Bianca Ohannessian
Scuba diving in the digital age certainly encompasses a lot more than just your basic dive kit and a battered-looking log book. Aside from an array of gadgets and equipment, there’s a vast sea of apps out there that will help you get the most out of your underwater experience, and help you do your bit to protect the world’s oceans too.
Despite acting as a magical escape from the haste of modern life and a way to get back in touch with nature, technology is at the heart of scuba diving. From the innovation of the first deep sea diving bell to today’s modern equipment, the sport as we know it is, in fact, only possible through these technological inventions.
Technology brings us closer to the natural world and let us experience the wonders of the deep in new ways. Whether you’re submerging yourself in the sea or simply sitting on the sofa watching TV documentaries such as Blue Planet, the underwater world is now more accessible than ever.
Here’s a selection of some of the best scuba diving apps swimming about which can help you optimise your aquatic adventures.
General Scuba Apps
Padi: Catch up on the latest scuba news or find your nearest Padi dive sites with this app. It also includes a variety of check-lists, and information about courses, equipment and dive resorts around the world. iOS and Android.
DIVE Magazine: An app version of the scuba diving publication, DIVE Magazine. Expect a monthly round-up of articles, access to the archives and lots of stunning underwater photography and destinations to inspire you to dive into the deep blue sea. iOS and Android.
Dive Log Apps
Dive Log: A practical solution for any diver who forgets to throw their log book into their bag when going travelling. Log your dives right then and there on your smartphone, including co-ordinates, conditions and weight belt information. iOS.
Divemate USB: Another digital dive log book which lets you record your dive details and add maps. It also allows you to add weather and water conditions, as well as depth, duration and tank data. iOS and Android.
Diving Data Apps
Scuba Exam: Find the answers to your scuba diving questions right there at your fingertips as well as quizzes. Ideal if you’re studying for your certification exams or just want to brush up on theory and hand signals after a long break from diving. iOS and Android.
V-Planner: This app provides you with lots of in-depth technical information through its decompression planning software. Great for experienced divers, it helps you calculate decompression stops and gives you gas usage information. iOS and Android.
Eco Diving Apps
Dive Against Debris: If you’re sick of stray bits of litter spoiling your dives and putting marine life in danger then Project Aware’s Dive Against Debris app could help. As well as removing any the underwater rubbish you encounter during your dive, you can also do your bit by snapping a photo of it. Upload the photo to the app along with your dive co-ordinates to let this environmental group know where the problem areas are and give their scientists and conservationists the data they need to help find a solution. iOS and Android.
Marine Debris Tracker: Another underwater litter tracking app where you can record details of what you’ve found and where. Linked to the University of Georgia, the data will help the efforts of the NOAA Marine Debris Program and the Southeast Atlantic Marine Debris Initiative (SEA-MDI). iOS and Android.
Scuba Safety Apps
TripWhistle Global SOS: This app puts safety first. Easily find emergency phone numbers when you’re travelling in different countries and make calls to the emergency services through the app. It also provides you with location information. iOS and Android.
Safe Water Sports: Going diving in the beautifully blue waters of Greece? Find practical information on dive sites and conditions, boat mooring and local hospitals as well as destination inspiration, all tailored specifically for Greek water sports hot spots. iOS and Android.