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The Open Data Team at The Sydney Boat Show

The Open Data Team was at the Sydney Boat Show in July to help launch the apps Boatable and Deckee following their incubation and endorsement from the Boating Companion Innovation Challenge. The Sydney Boat Show was the perfect occasion to officially launch the apps to market and to signify the completion of another successful innovation challenge. Some members of the Open Data and Innovation Team were there to help out at the Boatable and Deckee booths and to showcase the possibilities and opportunities that come from using open data.

The Boating Companion Innovation Challenge

The innovation challenge was launched in November 2017 and applications were open until late January 2018. The main objective of the challenge was to create an app to help recreational boaters navigate the waterways safely. A set of maritime data was released as part of the challenge for developers to use in their concepts. As with most innovation challenges, a pitch day was held to allow selected participants to present their ideas to a panel of judges. Winners of the challenge were informed in March 2018 and selected to start an incubation program to develop their apps with the aim of having them ready for launch at the Sydney Boat Show in July 2018. The winners of the Boating Companion Innovation Challenge were the teams from Boatable and Deckee.


Boatable is an app that is suitable for all recreational users of waterways in New South Wales. The app allows you to log your trip and enjoy the waterways safely with tips before you head off, and alerts while out and about. Boatable is a boating assistance app that helps recreational boaters navigate the seas. It includes features such as a range of maps, boat detail records, weather, logging of trips and safety information for both on and off the water.

Key features:

  • Explore the waterways and browse tips and photos of fishing spots and anchorages from other boaters
  • Read business reviews and connect with local service providers
  • Boat insurance comparison
  • AIS vessel tracking - Follow the real time movements of AIS registered vessels
  • Receive live updates of important marine notices from Transport for NSW
  • See the latest weather information


Deckee is an app that is suitable for all recreational users of waterways in New South Wales. It is a social app that helps boaters explore the waterways safely, share fishing and anchorage reports, find local marine services and much more. Deckee is a boating assistance app that helps recreational boaters explore the waterways through community-based contributions. It also has safety alerts, weather conditions, helps with boat insurance finding all in one app.

Key features:

  • Log your trips on the water
  • Create points of interest along the way
  • Search through your past trips
  • Record details of your boats, licences and insurance
  • View points of interest on the water including boat ramps, speed restrictions, marinas and much more
  • Get safety information and tips before you set off and while on the water
  • See the latest weather information

The Sydney Boat Show

The Sydney International Boat Show was held on the first weekend of August. The winners of the innovation challenge had a prerequisite to have their apps ready for launch at the boat show. Following a successful incubation and development period, the developers of Boatable and Deckee were able to showcase their new apps at the Sydney Boatshow, along with help from the Open Data Team to oversee the launch.

The Sydney International Boat Show is a yearly event and the largest recreational marine event in the southern hemisphere. The Boat Show features boating craft, safety demonstrations, equipment and a diving expo. This year was extra special for Transport for NSW and NSW Maritime with the launch of the Boating Companion apps as part of the innovation challenge and associated boating safety awareness program. The two apps, Deckee and Boatable, were showcased in their own booth at the show.

See footage from the boat show below, showcasing the two apps:

To keep up to date with team events, innovation challenges and new apps please follow us on Twitter and YouTube!

- The TfNSW Open Data and Innovation Team