What's new here?

Its time to review some more astronomy apps for your smart phone!

Let’s start with this guy: Astronomy Calender

Astrocalander

This little app is pretty much does what it says, albeit in a rather bare-bones format. You don’t get so much of a calender as you get a straight up listing of upcoming events:

astronomycalanderdata

It updates once a year unless you tell it manually to do so more often – which you might need to do if something unexpected comes along (a flyby asteroid or new comet).

The big problem with this program is that it notifies you of upcoming events by beeping and vibrating the phone as if it were a text message. This is the default setting, and you can turn it off in the menus but frankly, you should not have to!  Those determined to get astronomy event notifications should have the option on first startup or somesuch, not find the phone beeping at them without warning. The Android system does enough of this on its own, thank you

Verdict: Decent and handy but why is the default setting set to annoy you?

Astro Panel

astropanel

Astro Panel is an astronomy app that gives you a  forecast for viewing conditions. Simple factors like cloud cover, are supplemented by more advanced predictions such as ‘seeing’ and ‘transparency’, both common features for astronomical viewing.  In our test the GPS locator failed (probably an issue with the phone and not the app) and we had to enter manaully. The manual entry is a bit clunky since you need to know your latitude & longitude. There is no ‘nearby city’ option or anything else helpful.

astropanelscreen

Verdict: A bit hardcore for some features but very handy for anyone who like to plan their viewing nights

Astronomy: Moon

astromoon

There are many useful moon apps out there that have the phases of the Moon and other important data about the Moon. This is not one of them. All this app is is a bunch of images of the Moon. No credits, no real usefulness. Not even particularly good images.

astromoonscreen

What is the point?

Verdict: Don’t waste your time.

www.spectrum-scientifics.com

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