Apple Watch Ultra's Oceanic+ Upgrade Turns The Flagship Wearable Into A Diving Computer

hero Apple Watch Ultra Oceanic Plus
The newly launched Apple Watch Ultra is designed for the active wearer, coming with a titanium build, sapphire glass, MIL-STD 810H, and 100m water resistance, among other things. Leveraging the built-in water temperature sensor and depth gauge, the Oceanic+ app wants to turn the watch into a functioning dive computer. Co-developed by Apple and diving gear brand Huish Outdoors, the app can be used either free with limited features, or have key features opened up to the user if they subscribe.

The free version allows the diver to check dive logs, track depth and dive times, but if you want key features such as decompression tracking, multi-day tidal info, water temperatures, and so on, you can either get a one-day pass ($5), monthly ($10), yearly ($80), or yearly family plan ($130 for up to five people).

While the diving depth of the Ultra is limited to 40m (130ft) and also far less robust than a dedicated diving computer, the Oceanic+ app and watch combo make for a great entry-level device for a recreational diver who doesn't necessarily want (or can) afford a proper dive computer. Andrea Silvestri, vice president of product development and design at Huish Outdoors explains why this synergy works, “One of our first goals was to keep it intuitive,” says Mike Huish. “People who know how to use an Apple Watch already know how to use this dive computer, because it’s telling them things in a simple format they can understand. The navigation menus are simple—scrolling with the Digital Crown and using the Action button, you can navigate and use all the functionality of the dive computer while diving.”

In use, the limited underwater usability of the Watch Ultra is offset somewhat by haptic alerts sent from the app to the diver, while the watch's 2000 nits display also help in keeping important dive information legible. The app is available on the Apple App store, exclusive to the Ultra at the moment.