Many of you have questions about updates of marine charts. We will try to explain here how it works, the relationship between MapMedia and data suppliers such as Jeppesen or Navionics and also answer the question of who does what.
MapMedia works with various vendors such as Jeppesen and Navionics, as well as national Hydrographic Services.
MapMedia does not correct the Jeppesen and Navionics charts as this is done by them before we receive their data.
MapMedia then converts integrates their charts into our proprietary mm3d format.
How do chart data providers work? How do they get chart corrections to you?
Providers that supply us with chart data are constantly working on improvements, corrections and updates to their entire chart portfolio.
This can be done either by carrying out surveys in the field, through private partners or via Hydrographic Services. This is a non-stop job and requires substantial resources for these investigations and verifications.
However, when Jeppesen and Navionics release an updated version, that does not mean that they have re-surveyed the entire chart area, corrected all mistakes and have integrated all marinas worldwide. Of course everyone would like this to be the case but it is not realistic.
Example of a new vs. old Navionics chart
Providers can focus on a particular area, e.g. improving European Rivers, or the Caribbean etc. In this case a special effort will be made in these regions, so that there is be a greater chance that everything will be corrected, but once again, this is not a certainty if they did not have enough information beforehand.
It is impossible for anyone to be aware of every single navigation change or new marina worldwide comprehensively and all at the same time.
There are still some charts that have not been updated in a couple of years. When you see a chart that is for example from 2004 in the MaxSea product list, this date has been directly extracted from the Jeppesen or Navionics database. It does not mean that MapMedia is using an old chart, this is impossible.
The same goes for raster charts and this update lag is certainly more prominent with Hydrographic Services as the frequency of their chart updates is quite slow. In fact they are less reactive when it comes to the integration of new marinas. Editions and revision dates are generally older.
This however, does not apply to all Hydrographic Services and the SHOM in France offers very good charts for our country as is the case with the biggest Hydrographic Services in their own countries.
SHOM logo – the French Hydrographic Office
Users are also a good source of information. Their comments and critiques are used to improve product quality.
Each time as Anomaly Report is sent to MapMedia via the form on our website, we check it, analyse it and we pass it on to the supplier who produces data for this region.
In turn, the supplier verifies and analyses the problem, and if the suggestion is confirmed, they correct their charts or tell us if the correction is planned for the next version. We then inform the customer who reported the anomaly.
When we receive their updated chart data, we can begin the job of integrating and converting the data into our mm3d format.
MapMedia releases a new version of each chart zone once a year.
It is therefore possible that there is a maximum difference of one version between a MapMedia and chart supplier version during this time.
The quality of charts and user safety is a priority for MapMedia and for all of our chart suppliers.
We try to continuously improve and evolve produts in order to satisfy your needs.
Please continue to keep us updated on any problems you encounter. We thank you for your contributions!