Looking to take your stargazing to another level? Any space-loving backyard astronomer should have a trusted sky map to reference when stargazing or peering through the viewfinder of their telescope. We’ve compiled a list of our Top 5 Premium Astronomical Apps for Stargazing so you can have the Universe in the palm of your hand!
- Stellarium Mobile Sky Map
Stellarium is arguably the best-known planetarium app today. Stellarium can be configured to show the sky from any location on Earth and display the real-time motions of objects in either the entire sky, or just those within a selectable field. With a catalogue of over 600,000 stars displayed as a real time zoomable sky map, you will be able to identify stars by a few seconds, just by pointing your phone at the sky!
Many astronomical apps offer virtual space flights through the Solar System. However, this app does it better than most. Take 3D flights to travel to any location within the Solar System; orbit the planets and their moons, and land on their surfaces. Also, discover which stars, constellations and planets are currently visible in the night sky from your location.
- Distant Suns (Max)
Distant Suns is perhaps the oldest astronomical app and has been under constant development for longer than 25 years. They have a reputation of having one of the most realistic displays of the night sky, while being one of the easiest to use astronomy apps for casual sky watchers as well as serious astronomers.
- Cosmic Watch
Cosmic Watch combines basic principles of astronomy with time measurement to deliver a journey through space and time. It includes a celestial calendar providing you with all the important information and significant celestial events that are visible from your location.
- StarSeek 5
StarSeek 5 literally puts the Universe at your fingertips. Simply by holding your device up to the sky the dynamically changing map will identify stars, constellations, planets as you pan around. Also, preserve your eyesight with red-screen “night vision” mode as you’re exploring the skies!
For more on stargazing, check out our free downloadable star charts here or subscribe to Space News here, where you’ll gain access to our Sky Spotter column sent monthly with a summary on what you can spot in the night skies that month.