When I called Jeppesen (the company that owns Nobeltec) to buy the charts, for the run from Alaska to Japan, they mentioned that they had a free upgrade to version 10.0. One would think I’d be an expert on anything computer-related, but this is an area where I really haven’t paid attention. Plus, I am a bit paranoid about doing much of anything to “push” the limits of the navigation software on the boat. I’m always afraid I’ll somehow blow up the software. Now that I have it installed on my laptop, I feel much braver about being able to explore all the features of the product.
As I understand it Nobeltec (or Jeppesen) bought C-Map, and as part of this upgrade my charts were replaced by C-Map charts. I’ve only been playing with the software for a few days, but can already tell it is a big step forward. Here’s a few first impressions:
- The charts seem much better. It’s tough to know without comparing the charts side by side, but I can definitely say that the new charts are much better than what I had previously
- The charts now auto-update themselves from the internet
- A dongle is required to run the program, but you are allowed up to six other “planning stations”. This means you can have the software installed on other computers, charts and all — but, that the other computers are slightly crippled when running without the dongle. Everything runs normally EXCEPT you can’t run the software with a live GPS input. This is great for my use.
I think the free software upgrade might be over. I’m not sure… Here’s the press release on the new version: