Planisphere is an astronomy application that lets you use pinch and finger gestures to manipulate a map of the sky. As you zoom in finer detail comes into view. You can double tap on objects to get more information. You can use the compass and accelerometer to show the sky in the direction the phone is being held for the selected time.
Planisphere shows all 88 constellations and their boundaries, 9096 naked eye stars, the Messier deep sky catalogue, the Sun, Moon, planets and the now dwarf planet Pluto. These can be searched and then displayed if above the horizon for the selected time. Rise and setting times are available for all named objects.
The date, time and location can be changed. With GPS you can find your location or you can click on a world map or select a city. There is also a realtime mode that will update to the current time. You can also set a Night Light' which gives the map a red tint for nighttime viewing.
Moon, Mercury, Mars, Venus, Jupiter and Saturn atlases are also available on the App Store.
This version has been completely rewritten using the Swift programming language and replacing OpenGL with Metal.
Ratings and Reviews
I'll stick to paper thanks.
Constellation boundaries make the overview cluttered and difficult to read. No ecliptic is a major omission I think. Zoom feature is nice, but if a closer view is needed, apps such as Star Walk are far superior. Good value for a few pennies, but not enough here to persuade me to give up my paper planisphere.
Easy to use, but. . .
I found the Planisphere one of the easiest to use to navigate the night sky.
My only problem with it was the ability to read the names of stars/ features in night mode; the colour, plus the fact that no matter how far you zoom in, the words stay the same size( small).
Super value and functionality
I found planisphere searching thru the astro apps and, despite a lack of ratings took the plunge for 59p.
Very glad I did. It's brilliant and much more than the 'first astronomy app' I was expecting.
The nightlight feature is very usef though if you flick to settings they are the iPhone default and rather blinding.
Another minor jiggle is a lack of distance from earth for objects - but maybe this is not in the database?
Navigating the planisphere is very simple and intuitive and double clicking an object brings up an info panel. The search feature works very well and the constellations and labelling is very nice too.
As a fellow app developer I appreciate the time and effort that must have gone into this app and I sincerely wish the developer well with it. Hopefully another review might give it the prominence it deserves over many of the more expensive competitors. Cheers.
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- Julian James
- 6.5 MB
- Requires iOS 13.0 or later.
- Requires iPadOS 13.0 or later.
- iPod touch
- Requires iOS 13.0 or later.
- Age Rating
- © 2018 Julian James
Up to six family members can use this app with Family Sharing enabled.