The development of the company combines the convenience of modern mobile technologies with the reliability of familiar navigation systems.
Modern yachtsmen use two types of navigators. Either this is bulky and inconvenient, but reliable and accurate specialized equipment, or more convenient to use, but much less reliable and not intended for water use, mobile devices. Both can hardly be called an ideal solution. But it is possible that such a title will be able to win the creation of the Norwegian company Orca, which has set itself an ambitious goal - to change the very approach to navigation systems for small vessels.
The Orca system includes Samsung's ruggedized industrial tablet, a marine-grade mounting bracket, and a custom-designed data center that provides fast connectivity to charging and a variety of vessel sensors, whether sonar or GPS. There is support for the NMEA 2000 protocol. It is the computer center that is the core of the entire system, it processes the data received from the sensors, after which they are sent to the tablet screen, which serves as the control center.
Yes, nothing fundamentally new was created in the company. The idea here is to rethink existing concepts. The Orca system will combine the reliability and accuracy of traditional marine navigators with the simplicity and convenience of software products for mobile devices. According to representatives of the company, in this industry "there has not yet been an iPhone" that could completely change the approach itself. After all, smartphones of the beginning of the century were frankly clumsy and inconvenient devices with rather limited functionality, until the first solution from Apple appeared. Orca hopes they can make a similar revolution in the world of nautical navigators.
The industry has changed little over the past two decades. And the navigation equipment used today has interfaces developed 10-15 years ago, that is, frankly outdated and inconvenient. The problem with this industry is that you need a combination of hardware and software, which means a high barrier to entry. At the same time, this market is too small to be of interest to giants like Apple or Google.
But today, with the advent of all kinds of equipment and tools that simplify software development, the barrier no longer looks completely insurmountable. And Orca has created a system that can completely change the approach to maritime navigation. One of the features of its use is maximum simplicity and convenience. So, you no longer need to fiddle with SD cards in order to transfer routes laid on your desktop computer to the navigator. The user can create routes on his iPhone using a special application for this, and all data will be transferred automatically.
Orca developers have plans to create services "that are not even dreamed of today." They pride themselves on being able to quickly respond to all user requests, fixing bugs and adding new features in just a matter of days. And we hope that in the future Orca will become a company that specializes in marine data and provides services not only for owners of small yachts, but also for entire enterprises related to the sea.
CTO and co-founder of Orca Christian Fallro already has experience in this area. A few years ago, he founded a startup that also worked in the marine navigation business. It was eventually taken over by Navico, one of the big players in the market. But the new owners refused to develop Fallro's ideas, preferring to follow the proven, albeit completely outdated paths. In the end, he decided to start everything from scratch and founded Orca. Everything looks very promising and promising. But how successful the enterprise will be, only time will tell. In the meantime, Fallro is busy not only developing new systems and promoting existing ones, but also looking for investors who would be interested in the creations of his startup.
The first Orca product is already available for pre-order. The cost of a complete set is 1449 euros, a separate computer center will cost 449 euros - taking into account the cost of yachts, even small ones, these are very small amounts.