Subsurface on Android or: Subsurface 4.7 / 5.0

Willem Ferguson willemferguson at
Mon Feb 13 02:41:31 PST 2017

I am making myself singularly unpopular by asking the following 
questions. This is because I did not see the original discussion on the 
topic of the Android development path for Subsurface. My comments come 
from an hour or two I played around with the full Subsurface-desktop on 
an Android phone while in the waiting room of a hospital, tending to 
sick family this weekend. Previously, I had downloaded a dive log onto 
the phone as per previous correspondence. For me, it felt like the full 
desktop implementation on Android was almost usable. The dive trips are 
organised, can be expanded. If one is prepared to use the MainMenu->View 
path, one can fairly smoothly switch between info panel, profile and 
dive list, the statistics are calculated, importantly the dive ceiling 
is calculated. In short, there is quite bit of functionality in there, 
even taking into account the ridiculously small screen of the phone.

Then I thought of running this on a tablet, but as far as I can make out 
the screen resolution on tablets is much less (e.g. 800*1200, though I 
see some of the state-of-the-art tablets have 1600*2500) than on phones 
(1440*2560 on my phone). So having a 10" tablet is not really gaining a 
lot except a larger display size, but not necessarily more information 
being displayed.

Question 1. Am I therefore correct that available mobile screen 
resolutions are too low to run the full Subsurface effectively, even 
with a 10" tablet?

The full Subsurface on Android has several features that have not been 
incorporated into Subsurface-mobile, e.g. the calculation within each 
dive, e.g. the dive profile, setting GF's etc, full details on 
equipment. These options are currently not even foreseen in the 
immediate future. If one eliminates the View->All possibility which is 
just too much detail for a small screen, the interface becomes 

Question 2. What were the reasons at the outset that determined that at 
totally new UI be developed, rather than trying to adapt the existing UI 
to a small screen? Effective use of the UI would require mobile elements 
such e.g. dragging of screens as in Subsurface-Mobile. I am convinced 
that there were impeccable reasons for the decisionmaking, but because I 
am naïve about those I remain curious.

I suspect my questions also come from a belief that ultimately (i.e. in 
the very long term) we should move towards a full implementation of 
Subsurface in the mobile environment.

Kind regards,


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