At the 2008 Miami Boat Show, nine marine manufacturers were honored for innovative achievement. The Innovation Awards were organized by the National Marine Manufacturers Association and judged by Boating Writers International. More than 50 products were entered into eight categories and judged on their innovative distinction from other products, the benefits to the marine industry or the consumer, practicality, cost-effectiveness, and availability to the consumer.
1. Consumer electronics & software
NavNET 3D by Furuno USA Inc.: A multifunction navigation suite available in both stand alone and black box units.
2. Consumer installed non-electronic hardware
AirBattens from UK-Halsey Miami: Battens are inflated or deflated by a 12-volt powered control panel or manual pump and increase in-mast furling mainsail performance by improving sail shape.
3. Consumer personal gear
Coastal Compact Life Raft from Revere Survival Products: A compact, easily stored, lightweight raft that, when deflated, is about the size of a laptop.
4. Consumer installed docking & fendering equipment
H2 LED Dock, Marina and Pier Lights by Touch Stone: Illuminate docking access and walking surfaces of docks, marinas and piers, while helping to reduce light pollution.
5. Inboard & outboard cruisers
True North 34 from Pearson Yachts/True North Yachts: Combines an innovative hideaway tailgate/transom and moveable cockpit seating.
6. Inflatables, small boats up to 15 feet and tenders
Walker Bay Boats Airis High-Pressure Inflatable Kayak: The hull design can be inflated to more than six psi, creating a platform that is lightweight and compact enough to be carried in a backpack.
7. PWC, jet boats & pontoon boats
Yamaha Motor Corp. Wave Runner SHO: A nano-engineered hull decreases the craft’s weight by 25 percent, and no-wake mode automatically sets engine RPM at optimal no-wake speed.
8. Runabouts & fishing craft
Boston Whaler 230 Dauntless: Enclosed portable head, port and starboard bow seating with folding backrests.
9. Environmental award
Eco-Star 200 by Starcraft Marine: An electric boat with twin propellers.