The nonlinear Schrödinger equation (NLS) is a weakly nonlinear evolution equation, which describes the dynamics of wave packets in nonlinear dispersive media. In finite depth, the NLS admits a family of dark soliton solutions
(black and gray solitons), known to model localized depressions of the wave field. Another class of solutions is referred to as breather solitons and are considered to be appropriate prototypes to model oceanic rogue waves, which focus in deep-water due to the modulation instability. Results on laboratory studies on such solitonic waves are reported. The physical properties related to the evolution dynamics of these solutions, such as time reversal invariance and supercontinuum generation, as well as possible several promising applications, based on those models, will be discussed.