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5 Best stargazing and night sky apps for Android and iPhone

Need to know more about the constellations, stars and sun's movement in the night sky? These apps will help.

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If you are interested in astronomy and celestial objects, you no longer need to turn the pages of a book. There are tons of apps that will make your learning experience more interactive and fun. Most of the stargazing apps come with AR support, and you can get all the information you need about the night sky simply by pointing your camera at it. Here are the 5 best stargazing and night sky apps for Android and iPhone that you can download right now.

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SkySafari

SkySafari

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Android: Download here

iOS: Download here

When it comes to pure informational content, not many stargazing and night sky apps can match what SkySafari has to offer. With SkySafari in your pocket, you might as well have a professional astronomer guiding you through the night sky. While the latest SkySafari 7 Pro app costs $24.99, you can also download the basic version without the extensive features for free. There’s also a moderately priced ‘Plus’ version of the app that you can use to navigate the objects in the night sky. The ‘Plus’ version gives you access to 2.5 million stars and 32,000 deep-sky objects, while the ‘Pro’ version unlocks over 100 million stars and much more. One of the coolest things about this app is you can simulate the night sky from different time periods across different places on Earth!

Stellarium

Stellarium

Android: Download here

iOS: Download here

Stellarium’s open-source astronomy software for desktops is already a favourite among amateur astronomers. The app version of the software is just as good. Like SkySafari, you can either download the basic version of the Stellarium app or dish out $19.99 for the premium version. The Stellarium Plus app is also capable of controlling the scope of a telescope. Where the app particularly shines is its large database of cosmic illustrations. Stellarium uses GPS to map out the sky above your current location. You can use the free version of the app to overlay information on the night sky using AR.

Star Walk 2

Star Walk 2

Android: Download here

iOS: Download here

Star Walk 2 is the ideal app for beginners who are interested in using Augmented Reality to explore the night sky. All you need to do is point your phone camera to the sky and the app will overlay the screen with details about the stars, constellations, and other objects in the night sky. The app also keeps you updated about upcoming events in the night sky, like meteor showers and full moon. You can download a free version of the app which is integrated with ads, or you can pay for the premium version that offers additional features and an adless experience.

Heavens-above

Heavens-above. best stargazing and night sky apps

Android: Download here

Heavens-above is not as flashy as the other app mentioned on this list, but its smooth functioning and easy-to-use interface are what make it an essential app for every night sky enthusiast. With Heavens-above, you can see what’s above you in the sky at any given moment. You can also use the app to find out when the ISS and other satellites will pass above you. You can also get the uplink and downlink information for amateur radio satellites. Apart from that, you can also get information about satellite orbits and the location of bright comets. Currently, Heavens-above is only available for Android devices.

Sky Tonight

Sky Tonight. best stargazing and night sky apps

Android: Download here

iOS: Download here

Made from the same developers as Star Walk, the Sky Tonight app makes it easier for the user to search for the objects they are interested in. The app gives a detailed account of the current night sky and the astronomical events taking place. Like Star Walk, you can point your phone camera to the sky and the Sky Tonight app will fill you in on all the important details about the stars, constellations, and other celestial objects. You can set reminders for upcoming events, and chart the trajectories of different objects relative to your position on Earth.

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Conclusion 

These are the 5 best stargazing and night sky apps you can download on an Android device or an iPhone. While you need to pay to download most of the apps on this list, they also have free versions that cover all the basic features. If you are just getting into astronomy as a hobby and just want to know as much as you can about the night sky, the free versions of these apps are a good place to start. 

Do you have a favourite stargazing or astronomy app that you love to use? Let us know in the comments!

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