Apple offers deep dive in the first diving application

Starting today, Apple Watch Ultra owners can download the tech giant's new Oceanic Plus dive app to turn their latest wearable into a recreational dive computer.

The Watch Ultra already has the Depth app, which can tell you the depth and temperature of the water. Oceanic Plus (opens in a new tab) shows the same information, but if you want to take diving more seriously, you'll need a little more. The app contains a no-decompression timer to set limits on how deep you can dive and for how long so users don't experience decompression. Its user interface (UI) displays brightly colored indicators to let you know when you can dive deeper, stop, or slow down. It seems that the user interface was a key focus for the developers, as typical dive computers can be difficult to understand, especially for newcomers.

plan dives

Present in the app is a dive planner where you can see what the conditions are like tide and currents for the day. You can also create a surface time for when you need to return. Once you've jumped out of the water, you'll receive a short post-dive summary report indicating, among other things, how far you've dived. For a more detailed report, you can download the iPhone version to show you the exact speed you dived at and even log any local wildlife you've seen. Some reports (opens in a new tab) claim that the iPhone app "needs a bit of work" due to some "graphical inconsistencies" such as text alignment errors.

Notifications from the programmer are sent via vibrations strong enough to penetrate wetsuits that are 7mm (about 0,27 inches) thick. According to the announcement, haptic feedback was chosen because sound travels further underwater. If you are diving with someone who has a beeping dive computer, it can be difficult to determine where an audible notification is coming from. Oceanic Plus also reconfigures the action button so the app can be used even if you're wearing a wetsuit. Pressing the button before diving launches Oceanic Plus to a pre-dive screen. A mid-dive press marks your position.

Before downloading the app, you need to make sure your Watch Ultra is running watchOS9.1 and is paired with an iPhone 8 or later. However, you can use a second-generation or later iPhone SE with iOS 16.1 installed. Oceanic Plus is free, but for €9.99 a month new features like “decompression tracking” can be added. [and] location planner…” The basic app has “common diving features” such as a timer and depth gauge.

It is important to remember that Oceanic Plus is more intended for recreational diving. The app only works up to 40 meters (130 feet) underwater. Also, you can't track a scuba tank's oxygen level like other dive computers can.

Other devices

We highly doubt Oceanic Plus will ever be released on any other Apple device as it was made specifically for the Watch Ultra. This is because the device is WR100 and EN 13319 certified. The former means that the Watch Device can survive depths of up to 100 meters (although Apple recommends not exceeding 40 meters), while the latter means that it is "recognized internationally” as a diving accessory

Priced at €800, the Watch Ultra can be more expensive than typical dive computers, which can range from a few hundred dollars to €1,500, according to our research. But given the Watch Ultra's utility and friendlier user interface, Oceanic Plus could eventually set a new standard for recreational divers.

If you're looking for a new wearable, be sure to check out TechRadar's recently updated list of the 10 best smartwatches.

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