Ben Stein

New Panbo Forum launched

9 Apr

We’ve launched a new Panbo Forum today.  It uses the same user membership as the new Panbo website, so if you’ve joined as a member since the migration to the new website you’re all set to post on the new forum.  You can get to the new forum using the forum link in the toolbar at the top of each page.

We will also keep the old forum around read-only so that all discussions will remain available.  If you’re wanting to continue a conversation started in the old forum you can start a new topic in the new forum and ...

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Aqua Map confirms new ActiveCaptain API integration!

3 Apr

Aqua Map’s Giorgio Ghiggini confirmed via email today that his company will modify their apps to support the new Garmin ActiveCaptain Community application program interface (API): “Yes, we are going to integrate the new ActiveCaptain APIs soon. At a first look it does not seem to be a huge rework.”

This certainly seems like good news for those who rely on Active Captain overlays for awareness while underway.  Since Garmin pulled BlueCharts Mobile from the Apple App Store, many cruisers have been looking for a good alternative with some assurance that ActiveCaptain Community data would remain available.

This has been ...

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Winegard enters marine market

1 Apr

Winegard, a 64-year-old manufacturer of antenna products, has entered the marine market with three products. Two are broadcast television antennas, one the familiar indoor flexible, flat panel type, and the other an exterior omnidirectional antenna.  Their third launch device is the Winegard Connect, a combination WiFi bridge, cellular modem and router. All three products are made in Burlington, IA.

The Winegard Connect is unusual because the company also handles the cellular data service. While actual connectivity is provided by AT&T with North American roaming, Winegard sells prepaid bandwidth in 1, 3, 10 and 20gb packs.  When I sat down with ...

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NAUTIC-ON, Brunswick’s smart take on boat monitoring

22 Mar


In the lead-up to any major boat show there are a lot of press releases flying around.  The 2018 Miami International Boat Show was no different, and one such announcement was from a new division of Brunswick called NAUTIC-ON.  While I made a mental note to see what they were all about, frankly my expectations were meager. But what I encountered was a style of boat monitoring that far exceeded my expectations.

When I sat down with  Adam Schanfield, NAUTIC-ON’s General Manager, and asked him to describe their product he said, “It’s about keeping you on the water.”  He ...

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ActiveCaptain: Data delivery changing, but free access assured

9 Mar

Within minutes of announcing Garmin’s acquisuition of ActiveCaptain in May 2017 commenters here and elsewhere immediately began to worry about its future. On Wednesday evening, the Polar Navy announcement above poured fuel on that fire, suggesting that the many non-Garmin charting apps and MFDs which display ActiveCaptain cruising information would lose access to the database this May. But that quote is not the whole story by a long shot. Actually, Garmin is emphatic that AC data will remain freely available to developers and users…

Let’s start with a little history. In 2007 Panbo enthused about ActiveCaptain as an innovative crowdsourced ...

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