The best stargazing apps put the cosmos in the palm of the user’s hand, letting the user map the galaxies, stars, and planets from almost any location on earth. They are an essential component of any amateur astronomer’s toolkit and the fantastic entry point for anyone curious to learn more about the universe. A great stargazing app can make the wonders of the night sky more accessible.
The users don’t even have to venture outside to use most stargazing apps, as the phone’s GPS works in conjunction with the app to pinpoint the constellations and other deep space objects from wherever the user happens to be. The best stargazing apps make for an invaluable tool when paired with the best binoculars or telescopes. To locate heavenly bodies, point the phone at a patch of sky, and the app will display the name and information about the object pointed at.
SkySafari 6 Pro –
- The database includes 100 million stars, 3 million galaxies down to 18th magnitude, and 750,000 solar system objects.
- Allows creating a detailed observing list.
- Insightful audio tours and pronunciation guides.
- Overwhelming layout.
- It’s $39.99 with IAPs on top.
- The user has to install it on the phone and tablet and point it at the night sky.
- The app can identify constellations.
- It can be connected to a telescope and guide about stars.
- It has a feature called Tonight’s Best, a guided tour of the finest sights on a show that changes as the year goes on.
Stellarium Mobile Plus –
- The database includes over 1.69 billion stars, all known planets, natural satellites and comets, minor solar system objects including 10k asteroids and most known deep-sky objects, and over 2 million nebulas and galaxies.
- Comprehensive database
- Intuitive technology
- Users can locate and label their favourite constellations and planets and track satellites as they traverse the sky above.
- Access lore and stats about the stars and planets users select, including stories from different cultures.
- Zoom in, and the user can access HD photos of nebulae and galaxies.
- Pointing the phone in the sky will reveal the objects the user can see.
- Price $13.99.
Star Walk 2 –
- Database: 200,000 stars, eight planets, 27 asteroids and comets, and 10,000 satellites.
- Easy to set up and navigate.
- Available as paid-for and free versions.
- It is designed to be experienced through the phone screen rather than by connecting to a scope.
- For beginners, it is effortless to use because of its easy interface.
- It lets the user view the sky through a phone camera.
- It will overlay constellations in the direction the users are facing.
- The movement of planets could be tracked.
- There is a calm audio track that can be turned off anytime.
- Price: $2.99
- This easy to use and low-cost app.
- The app has been for a long time but has received many updates.
- It recognises night-sky options and constellations and when they cross the centre of the screen it will show their path.
- The user needs to be very precise in their positioning to get the required information.
- If the users move slightly away from the object they are interested in, and the details vanish.
- The AR screen is very dark, even for viewing at night.
- The graphics are clear, and the illustrations of constellations are attractive.
- The free version contains the details of fewer stars and constellations than the paid-for app. Users can upgrade by buying packs of extra stars and satellites.
- Telescope integration is limited.
- Price: $1.99