Garmin ActiveCaptain‪®‬ 4+

Connect to Your GPS Plotter


    • Free
    • Offers In-App Purchases



The free ActiveCaptain app creates a powerful connection between your compatible mobile device and Garmin chartplotter, charts, maps and the boating community. Whether you use your Garmin products for cruising, fishing, sailing or diving, this all-in-one app will help you enjoy your time on the water.

Just pair the app with your compatible chartplotter to wirelessly transfer and access charts and maps, software updates, routes, waypoints and helpful feedback from the ActiveCaptain Community. And, with the purchase of the OnDeck™ hub(1), you can track and monitor your boat from virtually anywhere.

Please note that this app is intended for Garmin chartplotter owners and is not recommended for use as a stand-alone navigational app.

> New Garmin Navionics+™ and premium Garmin Navionics Vision+™ cartography, featuring a Navionics® style appearance, advanced Auto Guidance+™ technology(2) and a one-year subscription to daily updates, is available now for North America and Europe, and coming soon to the rest of the world.

Purchase our newest-generation charts or legacy BlueChart® g3 charts from your mobile device, and upload them to registered Garmin chartplotters on your vessel.

You will get exceptional coverage, clarity and detail with charts that feature integrated Garmin and Navionics data and much more. Plus, the NOAA raster cartography(3) and premium features can be downloaded for free through the ActiveCaptain app. Visit

- PLAN A TRIP: Plan your trip, or e-scout a new fishing spot before you’re on the water. Then, transfer your data to your chartplotter where you can view your routes and waypoints.

- USER DATA SYNC: Automatically back up and sync your data between your chartplotter and the ActiveCaptain app.

- ACTIVECAPTAIN COMMUNITY: Join a community of boaters to get up-to-date feedback on marinas, boat ramps and other points of interest (POI). Check ratings, read reviews, and view pictures of POIs to make informed decisions on the water. Contribute your own POI, reviews and pictures from your compatible mobile device.

- CONTROL YOUR CHARTPLOTTER: Using the built-in Helm™ feature, the ActiveCaptain app lets you view and control your compatible(4) chartplotter from your smartphone or tablet, even when someone else is at the helm(5).

- EASY SOFTWARE UPDATES: Receive notifications about software updates from the app, and update your chartplotter wirelessly.

- ONDECK HUB: Use the ActiveCaptain app to track, monitor and control any number of switches with the OnDeck system(1) from nearly anywhere. Door open? Bilge running? Peace of mind comes in the form of text alerts and updates.

- GARMIN QUICKDRAWTM COMMUNITY: Download the latest 1’ HD contour maps shared by your fellow boaters, and sync with your chartplotter. You can also upload your own Quickdraw Contours map data.

- SMART NOTIFICATIONS: Connect the app to your chartplotter, and turn on smart notifications(4) to see calls, text messages and more on the chartplotter display while your phone is somewhere safe and dry.

1)OnDeck hub sold separately and requires an active subscription plan
2)Auto Guidance+ is for planning purposes only and does not replace safe navigation operations
3)NOAA raster cartography cannot be viewed on echoMAP™ CHIRP and ECHOMAP™ Plus combos but can be viewed on mobile devices via the ActiveCaptain mobile app
4)Helm feature is not compatible with ECHOMAP series chartplotters
5)Check device compatibility on the ActiveCaptain app web page; visit

What’s New

Version 29.0

Bugfixes and performance improvements

Ratings and Reviews

3.9 out of 5
2K Ratings

2K Ratings

TexanInFLA ,

Very Good & Needs Stability Fixes

I have had Simrad and Raymarine chatplotters and find that Garmin is an overall better plotter, easier to use, and the app is nice to have. Being able to upgrade all of my Garmin devices from my phone makes it so much easier.

I do think there is a lot of work that needs to be done to stabilize and improve the ActiveCaptain iPhone app. It constantly crashes to the point where I am unable to enter waypoints in it before trips or do anything besides just looking around on the map. I have a newer iPhone so that should not be the issue. Being able to see a list of waypoints on the app with coordinates, select one or many of them, and “share” by text or email would be a nice-to-have so I can share waypoints with others.

Em Anni ,

Pretty good but needs work

I love that I can mirror the plotter to my phone and tablet. However, getting there took time with support. You must disable cellular data in order for Helm to show the video feed. You can still press buttons and the thumbnail will reflect that, but no video. There are in app settings and phone settings so it can be seamless.

This app helps when we are cozy down below and need to get some info about what’s going on up top and around us. While we are not using it to its full potential, the bells and whistles we have are pretty great.

3 stars due to the cellular issues and cannot pinch to zoom on Helm. A few other minor frustrations. Can’t wait until any tablet can be used as a full replacement for a plotter and all instrumentation is available wirelessly. Still, hands on analog data is still pretty hard to beat. If you wanna impress the hotties, this app will do it. If you wanna impress your fishing buddies, this app will do it. Be prepared for jeers from the fuddyduddy and boomer crowd.

livescope larry ,

Active captain app

I have used the ActiveCaptain app for all of my Garmin updates and had zero issues updating. I have heard of issues through social media but for my experience I have not. I am not tech savvy and at 55 years old I know us older guys that use it can do it. My favorite video is from Russellmarineproducts and josh explains how to use the app and that is how I learned how to use it. My advice is read! And watch video from Russellmarine! It also has other features on the app that you will find very helpful when fishing like way-points ect. Be sure to register your units. The app keeps track of your units and trolling motor that are registered and automatically checks for updates when the come out and you decide to update or not. Hope this review will give someone a little insight as to how helpful and convenient the app is. Have a great day.

App Privacy

The developer, Garmin, indicated that the app’s privacy practices may include handling of data as described below. For more information, see the developer’s privacy policy.

Data Linked to You

The following data may be collected and linked to your identity:

  • Contact Info
  • Identifiers

Data Not Linked to You

The following data may be collected but it is not linked to your identity:

  • Usage Data
  • Diagnostics

Privacy practices may vary, for example, based on the features you use or your age. Learn More

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