Underwater technology developed by a Palaszczuk Government-backed international dive technology startup is opening up the wonders of the Great Barrier Reef to a new worldwide audience.
Speaking in Cairns today (Saturday), Minister for Innovation, Science and the Digital Economy Leeanne Enoch congratulated Taiwanese startup Deepblu on their decision to open an office in the state’s far north.
Ms Enoch said the Palaszczuk Government provided funding to Deepblu through the Advance Queensland Hot DesQ program.
“One of the biggest drawcards to this part of the world is Queensland’s iconic Great Barrier Reef, which remains one of the world’s premiere dive and snorkelling sites,” Ms Enoch said.
“Deepblu technology provides divers with all the technical benefits they have come to expect from a dive computer, but with an added, almost transcendent dimension of being able to share their experiences with their peers all over the world.
“The Hot DesQ program is designed to attract high-calibre international and interstate startups to locate to Queensland for at least six months by offering them up to $100,000 funding.
“This funding enables them to grow their startup while also sharing their expertise and connections to help build a vibrant entrepreneurial culture across the state,” Ms Enoch said.
Deepblu is a social network and storytelling platform for divers and ocean enthusiasts.
Member for Barron River Craig Crawford said the platform is linked to a patented dive computer augmented by Bluetooth technology which allows the user to upload images and data relating to their dive experiences.
“This technology enables users to easily share their images with the rest of the world,” he said.
“It’s a great way to highlight how Queensland’s iconic reef is still a thing of unparalleled natural beauty and wonder – a must see.”
Last year alone, tropical north Queensland welcomed 815,000 international holidaymakers – an increase of 16.9 per cent and a record high for the region.
Deepblu has located its Cairns office in theSPACE and has been busy establishing links with local diving shops and tour guides, introducing them to their social platform and dive computer.
Deepblu’s Queensland representative Annie Zhao said it was exciting to be part of the innovation scene in Cairns where they are able to “interact with so many businesses and people who care about the ocean, the environment and sharing their dive experiences”.
“We’re looking to showcase our technology to potential partners and develop our Deepblu community in Australia – and what better place than Cairns, which is the gateway to the Great Barrier Reef,” she said.
“We recently collaborated with DiveLog Australasia, incorporating Sportdiving magazine, on a competition where divers who use our technology can share their favourite photo in our Diving Down Under community group.
“We will be stepping up our networking activities over the course of our Hot DesQ engagement to really establish a niche here.”
Tim Hochgrebe, director of online community and dive shop underwater.com.au
has been using Deepblu technology to enhance his personal dive experience for about 12 months.
“I really like the Deepblu product – it’s unlike some other dive computers available in that it adds a number of lifestyle benefits to the user, such as a social media platform, in addition to the usual range of important technical dive information,” he said.
“What I find outstanding is that you can link the Deepblu device to your camera so that you can upload images and record things like the time and depth of where they were taken. I have been diving for around 30 years and like to share my experiences with buddies,” he said.
Underwater.com.au, trading as Underwater Australasia, provides a virtual meeting place for scuba divers and snorkelers, and is a distributor of Deepblu technology.
Advance Queensland is the Palaszczuk Government’s $420 million whole-of-government initiative, supporting jobs across a range of industry sectors.