Best Navigation apps for sailors tested. This time we take a look at Savvy Navvy and compare its pros and cons.
Modern sailing increasingly relies on apps on your phone or tablet to find your way. We have tested the latest and best navigation apps on the market.
Savvy Navvy is a sophisticated app with all the key information ready to be switched on or off at your fingertips. It is the only app that has a routing algorithm that has inputs for wind and current (although bizarrely not leeway) and then plots a beautifully drawn course to steer. It is useful to be able to enter later or earlier departure times and see the impact on wind and tide.
Charts are a little light on detail for my liking – my sense being that artistic merit has slightly usurped navigational utility. A bigger issue with Savvy Navvy is that the sophistication of the programming for its route planning has not been matched by that of the seamanship. It extrapolates impossibly detailed wind patterns from the GRIB data and uses performance polars that cannot be adjusted – both of which make the plans interesting to look at but of little practical use.
Beyond that, the routing algorithm is clever enough to know a TSS should be avoided if possible, but will route you metres away from a hazard on a lee shore or take you into dangerously shallow waters on a falling tide.
Savvy Navvy points to the future, and if a healthy dose of seamanship is added into the algorithm it will leave the others trailing in its wake. But for now its seductive looking route plans need to be treated with caution.
Most intuitive of all apps
Wind and tide information
Next generation auto routing with wind and current algorithm
Satellite image overlays
Charts a little light on key info such as spot depth
No distance and bearing tool
No AIS overlays
Boat cruising speed cannot be adjusted
Auto routing over-promises on what it can deliver
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