iKommunicate is Digital Yacht’s NMEA to Signal K gateway which brings the internet of things to anything afloat and will introduce a new generation of interfacing and applications to the marine electronic’s world.
Things are changing in the world of marine electronic interfacing with the introduction of a new open source platform called Signal K. It’s been developing quietly over the past few years by a group of enthusiastic and very bright developers and boaters and is now ready for wide scale implementation. The name comes from the original Signal K (kilo) flag which indicates “I want to communicate”!
Signal K aims to be the next generation solution for marine data exchange. It is intended to be used not only for communication between instruments and sensors on board a single vessel, but also to allow for sharing of data between multiple boats, aids to navigation, ports, marinas, etc. It is designed to be easily implemented by web and mobile applications and to connect boats and ships to the Internet of Things Afloat.
Many of you will be familiar with NMEA data standards which have been prevalent over the past 30 years. While reliable and proven, they are slow and also expensive to develop for as there are legal, certification and documentation costs. These standards were developed when the instruments on the average boat were much simpler and less capable. Today’s world is a lot more connected and there are huge benefits of tablet, PC and smartphone integration for data displays, applications, sharing and control. However, we don’t see the NMEA standard disappearing over night but equally a new format is needed for the next advance in applications. In fact, the combination of NMEA and Signal K on board is the best technical opportunity. That’s where iKommunicate comes in – a full featured NMEA to Signal K gateway and server allowing existing marine electronics to integrate with Signal K apps.
Like any new standard, it would take early adopters and lots of hard work to flourish but thanks to a successful Kickstarter campaign in the back end of 2015, iKommunicate was created and is now in production. Thanks to nearly 500 early backers, iKommunicate was designed and manufactured. Now everyone can now start to take advantage of next generation interfacing.
iKommunicate has inputs for both NMEA 2000 and NMEA 0183 so it will work with the latest generation of marine instruments as well as legacy systems. You can now integrate your older marine electronic equipment to the next generation of interfacing with tablets, PC and other devices. To start sharing data, it’s designed to connect to a router and to complement iKommunicate, Digital Yacht have introduced iKConnect – a compact wifi router with easy integration for iKommunicate as well as a WAN port for internet connectivity.
Out of the box, iKommunicate can do some really clever things
With data in Signal K format, it becomes incredibly easy to write apps to make boating more fun, affordable and safe. We’ve produced a simple SDK at our www.ikommunicate.com site to help budding developers. Popular apps could include
In fact, the sky is the limit! You can also download the iKommunicate manual from HERE
Lots of major app developers are starting to interface with Signal K and iKommunicate’s support of NMEA data over TCP and UDP connections makes it compatible with lots of older apps too.
iKommunicate is now available to order. You can order NOW
Dealers, marine electronic installers and boat builders should read our iKommunicate Guide HERE
Welcome to next generation interfacing for everything afloat!