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Orca brings autopilot control to the Apple Watch

by Orca 3 Mar 2023 14:28 UTC
Orca's brand-new Apple Watch app © Orca

Orca, the Norwegian marine tech startup, is turning the Apple Watch into a powerful tool for boaters. Orca's brand-new Apple Watch app lets users control their boat's autopilot and view instruments from the wrist.

Orca is the first company to deliver autopilot controls on the Apple Watch. Traditional wireless autopilot controllers are costly and resemble a remote control for a television. With the new app for Apple Watch, Orca is pioneering a new approach in the boating industry: Building innovative solutions on top of consumer day-to-day devices instead of inventing yet another device to buy for the boat.

Why are wireless autopilot controllers such a big deal? When boating you'll often find yourself away from the helm. Maybe you need to prepare for a port entry, find that chart folio, or get the sprayhood up before a rainfall. If you need to change course during situations like that, being able to do it quickly makes life at sea easier and safer.

With Orca for the Apple Watch, you can now turn on and off your boat's autopilot and change your boat's course. On a sailboat, the app allows you to direct the boat to keep a steady angle toward the wind.

"There are many situations where you may find yourself away from the helm when piloting a boat.", says Jorge Sevillano, the CEO of Orca. "In those situations, having control of the boat and an eye on your instruments makes life a lot easier - and the Apple Watch is a great tool for handling those situations."

The Orca App for Apple Watch also shows important instruments, such as speed, heading, water depth, wind speed, and wind direction.

"An Apple Watch costs less than a dedicated wireless autopilot remote and it does so much more", says Kristian Fallrø, the CTO of Orca. "I'm sure a lot of boaters will look at the Apple Watch as a great tool to make their boat trips more convenient and safe."

Orca is available in Europe, New Zealand, and North America. To use the Apple Watch's autopilot control you need an Orca Core (€449) to connect your watch to your boat's instruments and autopilot.

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