We’ve all dreamt of something like this. And wished we could have a smartwatch that does things like this. And the good news is Apple is ready to deliver something new and exciting, which is the Apple Watch you can take swimming.
How many companies are in this deal?
Apple has collaborated with Huish Outdoors to put out a new application that will accompany the Apple watch. The application is called Oceanic+ dive app and can be found in the new Apple Watch Ultra. Apple Watch Ultra is already equipped with depth gauge hardware that is certified for 130 feet or 40 meters.
It also has software and depth, but it comes with the problem of being on the limited side of things in case of dive computer-related features, important aspects like Safety stops ascent warnings, and many other warnings. It is limited to giving diving depth, mostly which in itself makes it incompetent software. It is for this very reason that Apple has decided to partner with Huish Outdoors.
\Their work together, Oceanic+ is an app that will be close to an Apple application as it has been heavily highlighted by Apple. This app has many features and has both paid and free versions. You can have a day pass, and monthly, family, or annual subscriptions. That way you get to choose what is suitable for you.
Oceanic+ app features
The application comes fitted with a table for its apps, and it specifies what is free and what is not.
- It shows the maximum depth
- It has a compass and heading or compass lock feature
- Diving or snorkeling modes
- Cold warning
- Maximum depth warning
- Weather forecasts
- Decompression information
- Dive planner
- Tissue loading
- Logbook that comes with GPS location, Total dives, dive details, longest dive, deepest dive pictures, etc
- Shows total activity time, elapsed time, and last dive time
Some of these core features will activate when paid for while some are free. The Oceanic+ application was designed to be a full-featured diving computer but the notion of full-featured depends on certification, dive skills, or goals that you have as a diver. This app was created with casual divers in mind, those that will dive only up to the maximum dive, and those that will want online logbook integration.
Every diver knows that they need to carry a watch or timer and have and use a secondary depth gauge. As a casual diver, that is something you need to be aware of and if you are recreational diving, they give you a secondary dive computer with depth gauges and other depth gauges. All this is part of your diving gear.
Apple Watch ultra, its hardware, and certification
There are two different types of certification components. These are certified as EN13319 compliant and the water resistance of the hardware is to a minimum of 328 feet or 100 meters. Within the former are certification tests that companies need to do. These are:
- Hammer test
- Static force test of pressure (150n). This is while it is on wrist fixtures
- Pressure test that is used to double depth pressure
- Test for responsiveness, readability, gloves, timer accuracy et cetera
- 24 hours sea water resistance test
- Temperature tests for air temperature that goes up to 60 degrees Celsius and temperature that goes between above and beyond water temperature that sits at 20 degrees Celsius, going down to 2 degrees Celsius.
- Underwater pressure cycles 200 times up to 110 percent of the maximum depth that the device claims.
These certification tests on the hardware have a certain way to go about them. Meaning they have their protocol and specific order on how the testing is done.
You start with the temperature test and the hammer test. You then do the 24 hours sea water resistance followed by static force and then Pressure cycling. Water tightness, readability, accuracy, and dive timer tests follow and you conclude with the operability test. The good thing is that the Apple Watch ultra has already gone through the tests and is certified.
Pricing of the paid features and subscription
Like it was mentioned above, some features need to be paid for to be fully accessed and there are subscriptions like family, month, and year.
For a day, it is $4.99. For monthly it is $9.99, $79.99 a year, and $129 a year if it is utilized by a family of up to five people.
These prices might be jaw-dropping but there is a reasonable explanation as to why they are like that. Diving is not a cheap experience, and considering how much a person puts in for transportation, lodging, and the actual diving, the addition of $5 wouldn’t seem like a lot.
The same applies to regular divers. If you dive frequently, considering the price of everything, the price of $79 is very reasonable. Too expensive? Yes, probably. Do you have other options? Absolutely. There are other diving watches, the like Cressi model dive computer, which is currently being sold at $230.
Cheap, yes, for a dive computer, but the bigger issue is what you want out of using the said dive computer. The Cressi model and Apple Watch ultra may have the same core functionality, but they do not possess the same advanced features that would help you during the diving session.
Most casual divers will go for the Apple watch ultra because but there will be some that will go for other models. It is the same as buying various things anywhere. There is an expensive material that will last longer and there is the cheap one. You get to choose what you want at the moment.
The Apple watch ultra and the Oceanic+ app have not given specifications as to whether they are certified to 40 or 100 meters of EN13319. They have, however, the nearest value of 40 to 45 meters and this is on a pressure value table that they follow. In this category, their overpressure sits at 90 meters and if they are certified to,100 meters then the overpressure sits at 200 meters. It is wise to not push it over its limit even if it can withstand more than that. But the good thing is it automatically stops recording and reporting depth when the maximum limit has been reached.