Android marine apps: Memory-Map is in, who else?

Ben Ellison

Ben Ellison

Panbo editor, publisher & chief bottlewasher from 4/2005 until 8/2018, and now pleased to have Ben Stein as a very able publisher, webmaster, and editing colleague. Please don't regard him as an "expert"; he's getting quite old and thinks that "fadiddling fumble-putz" is a more accurate description.

22 Responses

  1. Jeffrey Siegel says:

    You could add MXMariner to the Android list. It’s pretty new – very inexpensive – and out now. As documented on their site, we’re working with them on ActiveCaptain integration for a future release.
    What’s very interesting about MXMariner is the open source nature of the code behind it. From my understanding, there’s a lot of open planning with the display engine code. That could easily spark a lot of other developers adding overlays and other functionality on top of charts. The code to create the charts is already open allowing anyone to convert chart data to MXMariner’s format (even on the fly possibly).

  2. Ben Ellison Ben Ellison says:

    Right! I had trouble downloading a chart region but it worked today when I wasn’t looking. And it does a nice job quilting charts, a feature Memory-Map lacks. Site here:

  3. Joe Kosheff says:

    Looks promising. Any thoughts on this app vs Navionics, or more generally, raster vs vector on a phone?

  4. Tim McCoy says:

    And, as one might expect, there is also the Golden Ratio App for the iPad:

  5. John says:

    Android tablets allow access to data from Bluetooth serial (RFCOMM) devices, including NMEA Bluetooth bridges. I believe this cannot be done with unmodified iPads. This does offer advantages in some cases.

  6. Jeffrey Siegel says:

    Re: Bluetooth GPS…
    It’s true that it’s easy to connect to a Bluetooth GPS on Android. But…for offboard use, nothing beats a built-in GPS. I way prefer my Xoom because of that. For onboard use, I think that NMEA2K-over-WiFi will eliminate Bluetooth use on boats. It’s better and easily provides the full set of instrument data while onboard. Both Android or iOS excel at network/WiFi connectivity.

  7. John says:

    If the connected Bluetooth device is a only GPS, then I agree there’s no benefit compared to a built in GPS. I use a Miniplex-BT to send all NMEA (1083) data from B&G, Sailcomp and Garmin to either my Blackberry or my Xoom via Bluetooth.
    I suspect that the BT constraints of the iPad & co will result in wireless extraction of NMEA2K data being limited to WiFi and not BT. Obviously from a technical perspective both could work. BT can have slightly lower power requirements than WiFi, and when the motor’s off small differences can matter. Otherwise, I don’t see an intrinsic advantage of one wireless technology over the other.

  8. Sandy Daugherty says:

    Somewhere in the numerous Android blogs and Forums I read that Android Apps now top iApps.
    Jeff: I got 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) for the Xoom last week. It’s a delight. Now that I can read a write to the finger-nail-sized SD cards, I can store routes and waypoints too. But I don’t think we’ll see an app any time soon that will read them…

  9. steverow says:

    Another Raster app for Android that I’ve been using for a few months now both on the 7″ and the Xoom, is Marine Navigator/Lite from German guy Ronald Koenig. It seems quite similar to MXMariner, except that unfortunately it doesnt quilt, you load BSB3’s singly, but worth a look nonetheless and its free.

  10. steverow says:

    Sandy Ive got 3.2 on my Xoom. I found the new Zoom to fit screen thingy a real bonus, Is it worth the upg to ICS what will I get that 3.2 doesnt give me?

  11. Jay Kerr says:

    The Memory-Map app has been pulled from the app store because it violates the developer agreement. Here’s the post from the memory-map support page:
    Unfortunately, Apple don’t like our app and have removed it from the AppStore pending some amendments.
    As such we are scrambling to release a version that doesn’t have access to the Digital Map Shop (In the same way the Kindle app cannot access the Kindle book store) and apologise for any inconvenience this has caused.

  12. Sandy Daugherty says:

    Steve: I really haven’t seen any problem with ICS.
    Have you seen a way to ditch the “Pay-me-more” (rhymes with pretty-poor) apps from verizon?

  13. Anonymous says:

    The iOS version of Memory-Map is now back in the Apple app store. It is at a new price of $6.99. It is true that Apple have forced us to remove the ability to browse and buy premium maps and charts, but the free NOAA charts are there. Our marine charts for UK, NZ, Australia can be purchased on a PC and transfered to the iOS device, and so can third party charts in BSB format.

  14. richard stephens says:

    The comment above by “Anonymous” was from me. Sorry I forgot to sign in. Richard.

  15. steverow says:

    Hi Sandy, I wondered if you have had any problems with your Xoom on 3.2 handling HTML5, as I seem to, and if it cleared up on ICS.?
    has just introduced HTML5 charts for Ipads, and although there are a few teething troubles with Zoomify, it works pretty OK…except on my Xoom. I’ve got a couple of “hundred quid” cheapie chinese tabs a 7″ and a 10″ and the HTML5 is working fine on those, but not on the Xoom, which I have to use flash on. Would appreciate anyone with another perspective could check this out and let me know if the problem on the Xoom is general with HTML5.

  16. Sandy Daugherty says:

    No joy with HTML5 on ICS, but I hear that the Chrome for Android Beta does it peachy keen. See

  17. steverow says:

    Hi Sandy,
    Thanks for the heads-up on Chrome, although it will only run on ICS. Dont think the official ICS upg has rolled out as far as me yet, although it is underway.
    I’m seriously considering Randall Rushing’s Team EOS ICS upgrade:
    I will have to pluck up the courage to go for it, but it’s very stable and does stuff with the OTG port that the official version doesnt, and they are working on a kernel build that will allow an external modem from the USB port. As far as VZ is concerned you have my sympathy, it’s all part of the Vodafone Group, but in the US they seem to get away with charging for stuff that they cant in Europe, like Wi-Fi Hotspots which are free here. If it’s on the phone/tab it’s yours not theirs. Your data is very expensive compared to ours. A standard contract tariff here would be about $25 PM with loads of free calls and texts and “all you can eat” data. A modem data bundle is £15 for 3GB over a month, but you can get 15GB for £25.99 PM on a 24 month contract. The EU is responsible for all this, by bringing down and capping MTR levels, ie what the carriers charge each other for entry to their networks. So short of moving to the UK, or getting the FCC to clean up the US mobile industry, no real suggestions I’m afraid.
    One annoying thing on the Xoom Speaker Dock, it doesnt have a USB feedthrough, only an HDMI, so once mounted it has to be bluetooth KB and Mouse only which is a pain.
    Kindest Regards

  18. Scott E says:

    Take a look at MX Mariner – – it’s only $7 in the Android market, and while pretty new, it’s already shaping up to be a great app. Like OpenCPN, it’s under active, iterative development, with new features coming every few months.
    This works great on both my Android phone and 7″ tablet. It’ll be getting some blue water use by me very soon.
    I’ve found that most apps don’t actually understand how these apps are used, and require an active data connection, or you have to download individual BSBs/tiles in advance. Some don’t even support chart quilting. With MX Mariner, you download a region in advance – it’s a big file, for sure – but all navigation in that region is seamless (and switching regions is painless).
    I’m really looking forward to where MX Mariner goes next, and looking forward to some of the other features coming soon, such as GPX import/export so I can interface it to OpenCPN.
    I have no interest in MX Mariner other than being a happy user, and supporter of transparently developed projects.
    Install MX Mariner from
    It’s interesting to see ActiveCaptain behind an open project for a change and realizing that openness is the way to go. Congratulations for coming around on that Jeffrey!

  19. Ben Ellison Ben Ellison says:

    I had trouble downloading charts in MX Mariner when I had it on a Droid Incredible and I’m having it again on Galaxy Nexus. I’m on my fourth try for 258MB New England Region, and this phone has a good WiFi connection.

  20. Will Kamp says:

    I’ve had a few reports of this from people this week. The server has also definitely been getting slammed this week. And, I will be adding resumable downloads shortly. In the mean time, don’t hesitate to email me with any questions or comments. My email address is on the about screen in MX Mariner. I try to respond to each one.

  21. I can also recommend the open source OruxMaps which through it´s .kap conversion program OruxDesktop lets users install their own .kap charts.
    It can also import optimized Tracks from the route optimizing program qtVlm using grib´s and boat polar informationin in .kml format.

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