Seems I need a computer on my boat

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To access the internet.

What I need is expert advice on the cheapest device (or reasonably so) that will give me access around the Isle of Wight,along the South coast.Is that possible?

What exactly do I need? It would be nice if it does have the potential to become a chart plotter so that I can play around with it & even use it in earnest at some foreseeable time in the future.

Precise specifications or indeed detailed whole outfit recommendations even down to the socket I need to connect it to the ships supply would be very gratefully appreciated.Please keep it simple as my computer expertise is very basic.
 

bedouin

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People were sailing the world quite happily for thousands of years without having computers on the boat so I am not sure it is "need" :)

It really depends on what you want to use it for - for most cases where internet access is useful then a smart phone is fine - e.g. weather reports - or a tablet with 3G.

For anything more sophisticated - like using a computer as your main form of navigation - you are looking at a lot more complexity and expense that IMHO is hardly worth it - use proper Marine electronics for any navigational tasks
 

Tranona

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Tablet such as a Tesco Hudl. Own internal battery but a USB socket added to your cigar lighter socket (if you have one) or wired into your 12v supply. However, this needs WiFi, so if you want independent access you need one that is linked to a mobile phone.
 

CAPTAIN FANTASTIC

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A good smartphone and a 10 inch tablet. You use the phone to create a wi fi hotspot so that the tablet can work on wi fi; 10 inch tablets are big enough to work on and small enough to move around; but dont get cheapy chinese ones, get a samsung or sony or similar.
 

BlackPig

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If power is not a problem an old laptop (very cheap if not free from gumtree) wipe it clean install Linux mint (easy to use) or any other Linux.
 

Burnham Bob

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most likely your smart phone will create a mobile wifi hotspot a tablet can pick up. where you are there should be good 3G coverage. the contract for your phone will probably have a data download limit but if you don't use much - just emails etc then you should be fine but if you want to stream movies mobile broadband may not be the best solution. a second hand first generation tesco hudl (ebay around £30 - 40) will give you all the functionality you need for emails, internet surfing to check weather forecasts etc and a quick google when you've forgotten what a cringle is. It will also play movies you've loaded at home, download BBC I player programmes at home to watch on the boat and play games like patience etc.

It also has a built in gps so if you get the £25 plotting package from
http://www.visitmyharbour.com/charts-for-seaclear.asp
you'll be set up! Only techie bit is setting up the phome as a wifi hotspot but simply google the phone make and model to get instructions, or if really desperate read the manua that came with the phone........ :)
 

Heckler

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g
To access the internet.

What I need is expert advice on the cheapest device (or reasonably so) that will give me access around the Isle of Wight,along the South coast.Is that possible?

What exactly do I need? It would be nice if it does have the potential to become a chart plotter so that I can play around with it & even use it in earnest at some foreseeable time in the future.

Precise specifications or indeed detailed whole outfit recommendations even down to the socket I need to connect it to the ships supply would be very gratefully appreciated.Please keep it simple as my computer expertise is very basic.
Samsung Tab, whether an early one or the latest with Navionics will do all you need to do. My swmbo second guesses me now because the Lowrance, as good as it is is not as good as the Tab! Plus, if i go further east in the med, £250 for another chip or £40 for Navionics extra coverage. A no brainer.
S
 
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Maybe in a boat next to you?
OK boys thanks for all your advice.There is just one problem, I don't have a 'smart phone' & I don't want one if it can possibly be avoided but can it?
Can I use a laptop or something with one of those things I believe are called a dongle?
I really don't want to get involved in taking out a contract with one of those mobile phone providers & all the trouble & expense it is likely to entail.
 

GHA

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OK boys thanks for all your advice.There is just one problem, I don't have a 'smart phone' & I don't want one if it can possibly be avoided but can it?
Can I use a laptop or something with one of those things I believe are called a dongle?
I really don't want to get involved in taking out a contract with one of those mobile phone providers & all the trouble & expense it is likely to entail.
Whatever you do you'll need access to the mobile phone network to get onto the Internet for weather forecasts etc. Th good news is you can get pay as you go SIM cards with no contract at your local supermarket or on any high street.
 

MagicalArmchair

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+1 for Hudl 2 - best £99 you could spend in this area. Integral GPS, can load Navionics HD on to it, and access internet via wifi or by 'tethering' (making it talk to) your mobile. Battery life a bit shocking, so make sure you have a means of charging...
 

bedouin

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OK boys thanks for all your advice.There is just one problem, I don't have a 'smart phone' & I don't want one if it can possibly be avoided but can it?
Can I use a laptop or something with one of those things I believe are called a dongle?
I really don't want to get involved in taking out a contract with one of those mobile phone providers & all the trouble & expense it is likely to entail.
You need to say what you want to use the computer for before you can get any realistic advice, but for accessing the Internet away from a marina you will need a mobile phone contract - either for a smartphone, a dongle or a tablet.
 

Richard10002

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OK boys thanks for all your advice.There is just one problem, I don't have a 'smart phone' & I don't want one if it can possibly be avoided but can it?
Can I use a laptop or something with one of those things I believe are called a dongle?
I really don't want to get involved in taking out a contract with one of those mobile phone providers & all the trouble & expense it is likely to entail.

You can get a PAYG sim from Giffgaff at £10 per month for 500 mins and 1Gb of Internet per month, or £15 for 1000 mins and 5Gb.

Tesco do a 3 2 1 PAYG sim with data at 1p per Mb.

I have a Hudl2 and I'm not sure the battery charges as fast as it discharges,.
 

markhomer

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I see an nc 10 netbook in for sale section , would be ideal :) , but there again Im biased im selling it , cheap as chips for a market leader in its time , those that know them , im sure would agree a good prospect :)
 

Sandy

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I get on the boat to get away from computers. OK I have a small GPS and a smartphone, but the last thing I want is the Internet.
 
Joined
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Maybe in a boat next to you?
Whatever you do you'll need access to the mobile phone network to get onto the Internet for weather forecasts etc. Th good news is you can get pay as you go SIM cards with no contract at your local supermarket or on any high street.

I'm not bothered about weather forecasts,I'm happy with the BBC ones a day or two in advance.(can be heard over the radio).Pay as you go sounds ok but I'd still rather not buy another mobile if I can possibly avoid it.(I have an antiquated Nokia).
 

LadyInBed

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I get on the boat to get away from computers. OK I have a small GPS and a smartphone, but the last thing I want is the Internet.
I wouldn't be without mine, tablet and 3g mifi dongle.
I use it for weather apps, gribs and like at home, look up 'things' off the net, consult stored data (tide tables and the like), play music and of course the forum :ambivalence:
The one thing that I don't use it for is nav.
 

FairweatherDave

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I'm curious about the title of this thread. "It seems I need a computer".....to access the internet. I also sail to get away from technology etc but I would rather have my smart phone for very occasional internet use than PAYG sim cards, dongles and tablets (when I am only going to use the tablet reluctantly anyhow). I don't follow the logic of the OP against smart phones, surely they are the ultimate minimal internet access device? I know there is the idea of tablet as chart plotter but I don't think that is the motivator for the OP. I am a bit confused.
 

Tranona

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So could I get a wifi router or something to do the connecting bit rather than a mobile?

No. If you are in a wireless hotspt or can use a private wifi such as in a marina, you don't need a phone. If you are out of range of these then you need the phone to access the internet. Exactly the same as at home where your local wifi comes in through the phone. You can get a local wifi on your boat but it still needs a phone line or a signal from a mobile.

No way of avoiding this if you want the (dubious) benefit of access to the internet on the boat.
 

MagicalArmchair

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You can get a wireless router these days that is mobile - again, if you really want to: http://www.three.co.uk/Discover/Devices/Huawei/E5573_4G_Mobile_Wi-Fi?memory=0&colour=White

I still suggest Hudl plus smart phone though. What puts you off a smart phone? If it is purely cost, then buy a previous generation phone second hand and go contract only. If it is your are not comfortable with the technology, either ditch the tech altogether, or learn the phone at the same time as the Hudl! (I heartily suggest Angry Birds)
 
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