Star Walk Windows Phone
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Don't go stargazing this summer without Star Walk for Windows Phone

Escape the ordinary and head out into the wilderness, just don’t forget your Windows Phone. You’re going to want to pick up Star Walk for Windows Phone the next time you plan to do some star gazing. While it’s fun just to look at the stars and make a wish here and there, why not elevate your knowledge of all these celestial bodies? Star Walk for Windows Phone is a must have app for star gazing.

Living in southern California I don’t get as many opportunities as I’d like to really see the stars. The light pollution here is pretty insane, which means a quick drive to either Yosemite or Joshua Tree is needed to really appreciate the stars. I’ll take any excuse to get outside and Star Walk is a pretty good excuse.

Star Walk

Star Walk is an interactive astronomy guide that gives insight into the constellations, planets, stars, nebulas, galaxies and more. It’s been a very popular app on Android and iOS, we’re glad to see it available to Windows Phone owners.

Here’s what you get and can do with Star Walk on Windows Phone:

Get started quickly

  • Launch the app and point your device at the night sky, you'll see the stars, planets, satellites, and constellations in their proper place for your location. As you move your device, the star map updates in real time. The Moon is the easiest first target.
  • Tap Augmented Reality icon in the upper right corner to add the image from your camera to your sky view.
  • Use Night Mode to go easy on your eyes and preserve night vision when exploring the Universe.

Go deeper and beyond

  • Every star, planet, constellation, or deep space object, such as nebulae and galaxies, has an (i) next to its name. Tap it to access information.
  • A scale on right is the Time Machine, slide it to explore the map of the night sky of tomorrow or years ago.
  • Star Walk has data on over 9000 man-made satellites. Track their flight across the sky, be it day or night, catch iridium flares.
  • Meteor showers are spectacular yearly events. Star Walk can help you plan ahead and locate the meteor shower on the night sky. 

Share your experience

  • Post pictures from your virtual planetarium and let your friends learn about the night sky. Astronomy has never been so engaging!

Star Walk

We’ve been playing with Star Walk for a few weeks and really like it. It’s not a bad app for anyone at all interested in the night sky. With summer around the corner, you’ll probably want to pick this app up – especially if you have a phone with the large display, like the Lumia 1520. This app can make family camping trips a little more educational.

You can manually control the viewing angle of the night sky within Star Walk or just point your phone to the sky and learn what you’re looking at. You can manually type in the name of a celestial body to use your phone to hunt it down. Truly a stellar app.

Star Walk is available without a trial in the Windows Phone Store. It’ll set you back $2.49.

Stargaze often? Sound off in the comments with your favorite spot to catch the stars! 

QR: Star Walk

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Reader comments

Don't go stargazing this summer without Star Walk for Windows Phone

99 Comments

Yosemite is probably my favorite place to stargaze. Nothing like being surrounded by those spectacular granite cliffs and clear skies.

I looked last year for this type of app and didn't find anything really good. This seems pretty good. I have pretty dark skies where I live so I get to see quite a few constellations and planets. Now I'll know what they are too :) Just installed it and will head out now to gaze...

I agree. Excellent App.I use it all the time to aid in seeing up my Astrophotography sessions. It hasn't been updated in some time though, and requests that the Dev add not for more DSO objects from the. NGC and Caldwell indexes have fallen in deaf ears. The slightly shallow catalog is the only thing holding it back.

I've had this app for a few months, I love it. There is another app that is similar but is jumpy as hell when aiming up at the sky. Star Walk is the best and worth the few bucks.

Agree best star app on WP. I pick it up when it first arrive. I even started a thread on the forums. Thanks Sam this is a nice app.

That is unfortunately true. It would also benefit from a larger catalog of DSO objects. However in terms of fluidity and function it is excellent.

I think AR works better in Star Chart than in Star Walk (motion seems more fluid and you can use AR in portrait mode). But Star Walk has more data and seems to be current as far as development goes).

I couldn't find a 70 - 900.
Anyways, I'm just starting, literally! 70mm aperture is good enough to begin with. Right now I'm just getting used to terrestrial use.

I have both star chart and this one.This is much nicer and works better on my 1520. It also has some very nicely done features..

Mac

SkyMap is a pretty good app in this category as well. Have had it installed for the last couple years and have found it incredibly interesting and useful.

Maybe there are better ones if you have specific needs, but I just tried it out and it was awesome and I'd what I wanted, so I'm happy. :)

Haven't seen a video demoing an app (not a game) in a long time by wpc. Guess that question asking about if you/we wanted more videos of demos from that end of the year survey that took a while to fill out fell upon blind eyes (yes I know its usually deaf ears). But seriously why not do at least a comparison between the star gazing apps available in the market.

"why not do at least a comparison between the star gazing apps available in the market."

We haven't run a 'star app' post in a long, long time. We have no idea whether or not there's interest in such a thing, since most people here seem to comment on WhatsApp and Facebook articles. Doing time in shooting a video that like 10 people comment on is not something we enjoy doing, so we have to allocate resources.

Now that we know that there's interest, we can better gauge what we should do next.

Commenting to show interest in this topic, and seconding the app comparison video suggestion.

App comparison posts are great, so long as they're not weather app-related.  Seriously, I'd dig a knitting app comparison post more than a weather app one at this point.  Personally, I'd love a comparison of TV show tracking apps; I use Rudy's TVShow, as it was the first I found in the early WP7 days, but there are a lot more choices out there now.

There's a crap-ton of TV show tracking apps nowadays; besides the aforementioned TVShow, a quick store search shows: TV Blaze (posted here a few days ago and with an interesting comments thread,) Televisionary, WPtrakt, Series, Clutter, Series Notifier, Prime TV, Next Episode, MyTVShows, My Shows, Episode Tracker, Series Fan, Show Hive, TV Series, and more I'm sure I've missed.

I'd try them all and write up a shoot-out article, but I'm not on the WPC payroll ;)

Dan, sorry this is off topic, but I received a reply from a Jan Kuoum at Whatsapp (asking about WP app availability). Here is his rather incredible reply;

****

From: Jan Koum
Sent: ‎27/‎05/‎2014 08:13
To: Laurence
Subject: Re: Windows Phone app availability?

Laurence - Sorry to hear your whole family is running Windows Phone. Have you considered other platforms? thanks

******

I forwarded the email thread to you at WPCentral as a tip. I still can't quite believe a Whatsapp employee would send such a reply! But it does explain why we are such third class citizens in the Whatsapp world!

I think your comment about WhatsApp just flew over peoples heads. Post it somewhere else, or better yet, start a new forum topic. Could you imagine the hub bub?

Here's a screenshot of my email thread with Jan at Whatsapp. Feel free to use that should you decide to open a thread about it over in the forums (I don't know how to -- but am pretty annoyed at the arrogant way Whatsapp behave. 

Email thread

These are the types of apps people feel are missing in the WP ecosystem. Articles/reviews should give exposure. I didnt know either of the apps mentioned existed before this article. Excited to try them out on my next camping trip :)

Hi Rubino.

 

Just to add one more vote: YES - this type of comparison is very interesting.

 

Regards

TP

I am sure there are plenty of photographers on the forum as well as star gazers.  Its also the start of summer so many of us are starting to dust off the big lenses and telescopes or even spotting scopes.

Sometimes it is a matter of timing.  I have several of the apps on my phone and trying to figure out which to keep and which to toss.

Would love to see a comparison.

I spend more than that on a fancy coffee and it only lasts a couple minutes. Developers deserve to get paid for their work, just like everyone else.

True. I spent more than that on games app. This app is well worth it. Real life app dev deserve some love too.

I've bought this app across 3 platforms now. Will never complain about paying for this app. It's flawless and works everytime!

Then don't buy? lol Why not create your own app? Developers work really hard, it takes days, weeks and even months to make a quality app, so if you want to use a quality app then pay for it. Don't you pay for a good quality food/clothes? Or you get them for free?

Just downloaded it and it is amazing. This is the type of polished, sophisticated app we need more of. Kudos to the dev for bringing it to WP. This would be truly spectacular on a 1520.

So its a fake sky that follows using your phones internals? Is there one that uses your camera to view and overlay the actual view with what your looking at? This looks really cool though. Might have to try it out. I'd like to use my camera though to get a more realistic viewing experience.

You need to try this out. It's flawless. It is a VERY realistic viewing experience. You can identify planets that you once thought were stars and so forth.. Super easy to use.

I did read the article. But sounded like it just has a image that moves with your phone. Not just using the what the camera sees.

I meant it has a 'camera' option with which you can overlay the actual image from the back camera of your phone with the simulated image. Exactly as you wanted.

Hmm I just paid the $1.49 for skymap after using the free version for quite some time and used it this weekend up near Yosemite. And NOW you tell me of this, with more features?! Grrr might have to get it anyway

Hello, first time commenter, but I've been a reader since the LG quantum came out. I'd like to add my support to app comparison videos; great idea. Love this app and website by the way, they have been extremely helpful through out my time with windows Phineas windows 8. I I refer many of my students here.
Cheers

Does this app work without a compass sensor, such as on the Lumia 520/521 (and perhaps other low-end Lumias, though I forget which ones have it and which don't)? I know some other augmented reality-type apps don't work because they require the compass to position the content correctly in space.

Absolutely love the app, have had it for over a month now. I primarily use it to check out the star constellations at a specific location, to see when it looks best, so i can take a photograph of some star trails from it :) soon i will try to hunt down the milky way, light pollution makes it hard though..

Looks great!

 

But sorry... no try, no buy...

 

Get back when you have a trial so that I can judge if its worth the price.

For me it was definitely worth it. The app is really excellent. Though they should have included a trial.

Same for me, I'm not going to buy an app unless I can either try it first or it had a really great feedback into the thousands.

BTW, its really easy to make a trial. Why should I as a customer have to worry about refunds when so many apps have trials?

I am tempted to buy this app but I demand to try it first!

So they didn't make a trial, but you want to check it out. So all you can do is buy it first, check out the full version and get a refund if you don't like. The refund process is very easy and takes five minutes only.

Nope. Why should I make myself the trouble?

There are other apps that gives me the choice of a trial. It's my choice ... no try, no buy...

Maybe when reviewing a game/app that doesn't have a trial, you should throw up a short video so that we can get a feel for the app. That would be nice :)

But when a thing is not very popular, creating a video to demo it would not be very wise. You can get a refund if you don't like it.

Well, how else is an app/game going to become popular if it hasn't got a trial and no one will buy it without being able to try it or at least see it in action!?!?!?
The video doesn't need to be long, or have a voiceover, just a 1 minute video showing how it looks and maybe show a couple of the best features in action. It wouldn't take more than half an hour to make a simple video...
Although, maybe the developer should possibly upload a video if they don't create a trial version :)

Oh, and just to say, I bought this app ages ago, but I still wish non trial apps would have a little video :D

So they launch an app and get a bit of initial buzz and even get lucky enough to get featured on WPCentral. But squander most of this opportunity by not having a trial version ready. Now we'll provably never hear about it if they do release a trial.

Just downloaded and installed the app. So I have not yet been able to use it “in the field”, but from what I have seen until now, it looks very promising: Easy to use and navigate through the map (which is more cumbersome with for instance SkyMap and Astroller), you can set the visual magnitude to a good level (although it would be useful to add the actual magnitude to the scale), and very easy to look for a specific object (Try looking for instance for “NGC457” in both this app as in SkyMap J)

Also nice to have the location of the different satellites (Assuming these are the correct and updated locations), and an “image” of the major nebula. Date and time can be modified easily to prepare a star gazing session.

Shame that the position of the bigger moons of Jupiter and Saturn are not displayed, but apart from that, I expect me to start up this app rather than SkyMap, Astroller, Astronomy Kit, Star Chart or Outer Space on my next stargazing session. (Yes, despite popular believe, there already ARE quite a few apps for WP :-) )

Just purchased this app and will agree with others that it is great. One thing though. After scrolling around manually, how do I switch it back to compass/accelerometer? I found it does itself eventually but...

Maybe it loses calibration... I don't actually know. But the clock button at the top-right switches to the camera button whenever the device is waved in roughly a figure-8 motion. I figured it out accidentally, though.

Does this app work offline? I would love to use this whilst on my travels...
(there's nothing more wonderful than a night sky unaffected by light pollution. Unfortunately, those kind of places are also far away from data connections!)

The best place that I have ever seen the night sky was a Forward Operating Base (FOB) in Afghanistan back in 2010. It was, what we called, a blackout base. No visible light was allowed to come from any building at night for safety. Stepped outside and looked up. I had never imagined seeing the Milky Way the way I could then. Having this app would have been awesome I'm sure.

What really would have been awsome is if you had a bigger (like 14inch/350mm) telescope on that location!
Makes you realise how much we pollute the sky in urbain locations, and the sheer beauty that goes lost with that :(

I don't have data connection the places i go to stargaze. I'm assuming you need internet to use these apps?

Can anyone please tell me if this contains a background process & is it controllable or not (or both)? TIA