Star Walk

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Star Walk
Logo of Star Walk application
Logo of Star Walk application
Developer(s)Vito Technology, Inc.
Initial releasefor iPhone/iPod Touch: 2008
for iPad: 2011
for Android: 2014
PlatformiOS, Android, Windows
Typeedutainment
Websitehttps://starwalk.space/

Star Walk is an educational astronomy application developed by Vito Technology that allows users to explore celestial objects in real time through the screen of their devices. The application is presented in the mobile software market since 2001 and is available for iOS, Android and Windows. Since its release Star Walk has been downloaded by more than 10 million users around the world.[1]

The objective of Star Walk is to help astronomy amateurs, students and professionals locate and identify over 200,000 stars, planets, constellations and satellites in the night sky, providing detailed information about them.

Functionality[edit]

Time Machine will help users explore the map of the night sky of tomorrow or years ago.

The application helps to determine the exact position of celestial objects in the sky above. It also includes extra information on star clusters, meteor showers, iridium flares, galaxies and nebulas, along with the current position of dwarf planets, comets, asteroids and man-made satellites.[2]

Star Walk also provides a single-screen space dashboard, showing you when the Sun (and potentially visible planets) rises and sets at your location, along with the current moon phase, elevation angle, and day length.

Star Walk shows users a list of upcoming celestial events which they can add to the calendar and set a reminder for.

Also, the application is equipped with time machine feature which gives an opportunity to rewind or fast-forward time to explore the map of the night sky in the past and future. Besides, Star Walk uses iOS device camera for augmented reality feature. It combines the image data from camera with the star map to give the user a real time view of celestial objects.[3]

Star Walk 2[edit]

Star Walk 2 is a solid update from the original Star Walk astronomy application. This new version has a re-designed interface and offers a variety of camera modes: free roam, scroll/manual, and augmented reality. The augmented reality view remains as a holdover from the original app.[4] In order to explore the night sky objects, the user can orient the device toward the sky so that the application activates the camera and the charted objects can be seen appearing superimposed on live sky objects.

Users can scroll a list of objects visible on any night and from any location on Earth. Tapping on an object name displays pop-ups that give you information on the object, a Wikipedia link for more details, and a 3D option if there is one for that item.

Star Walk 2 app also has a "What's New" feed of the latest astronomy news.

The developer offers an ad-free version for $2.99 with expansions that adds deep sky objects, satellites, etc. for $0.99 each.[5]

Releases[edit]

Star Walk was premiered on November 8, 2008 for the iPhone and the iPod Touch. A version for the iPad was released on March 4, 2010.

Star Walk for Android was released on January 9, 2014. Starting from July 31, 2018 Star Walk became free for all iOS devices.

Star Walk 2 for iOS was released on August 21, 2014. A version of Star Walk 2 for Android devices premiered on March 11, 2015.

Reception[edit]

In addition to its commercial success, Star Walk was very well received by critics. At WWDC 2010, Star Walk won an Apple Design Award for the iPad version.[6] As of 2012, it won Parents’ Choice Gold Award in the "Mobile Apps" category,[7] Academics' Choice Award,[8] and World Summit Award in "Entertainment and Lifestyle" category.[9] Also, The Webby Awards 2012 nominated Star Walk in "Education & Reference" category.[10]

Reviews[edit]

As of January 2013, news website Mashable lists a rating of 4.9 (out of 5) and number 1 in Top 5 Apps for Kids You Don’t Want to Miss.[11]

Kit Eaton of the New York Times spoke of "the beautiful imagery it uses to show constellations and detail on the planets."[12]

Mel Martin of TUAW called Star Walk "one of the great demos of Apple technology."[13]

Earlier, Bob Tedeschi described it as the application that "will awaken your inner astronomer."[14]

Lonnie Lazar of Cult of Mac offered to use the application "for stargazing as well as to show off some of my iPhone's capabilities to friends and curious strangers."[15]

Soggy Astronomer wrote that "this app brings the old paper star chart into the smartphone age, and makes exploring the night sky easily accessible to everyone."[16]

Derek Walter of RedOrbit.com recommended it for students and teachers, saying "whether or not you are an astronomy teacher, Star Walk is an immersive app for allowing students to explore the universe."[17]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "10 native apps that give Apple Watch some independence". Cult of Mac. 2015-09-22. Retrieved 2019-09-10.
  2. ^ Turner, Adam (2014-04-05). "Astronomy apps: Planets v Star Walk". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 2019-09-10.
  3. ^ Chen, Jason. "iPad App Review Marathon Live (Part 2)". Gizmodo.com. Retrieved 2014-03-05.
  4. ^ "Star Walk 2 mostly improves on the original". Engadget. Retrieved 2019-09-13.
  5. ^ Shanahan, Jesse. "The Best Free Stargazing Apps Of 2018". Forbes. Retrieved 2019-09-13.
  6. ^ Shah, Asam. "10 incredible iPad apps for education". Thenextweb.com. Retrieved 2014-03-05.
  7. ^ "Parents' Choice Awards. Star Walk". Parents-choice.org. Retrieved 2014-03-05.
  8. ^ "Academics' Choice Award™ Winner". Acasemicschoice.com. Retrieved 2014-03-05.
  9. ^ "Winners of the World Summit Mobile Awards (WSA) 2013 with case studies and 30 videos". mobiForge. 2013-02-11. Retrieved 2019-09-11.
  10. ^ "Star Walk – 5 Stars Astronomy Guide -- The Webby Awards". Retrieved 2019-09-11.
  11. ^ Crowell, Chris. "Top 5 Apps for Kids You Don't Want to Miss". Mashable.com. Retrieved 2014-03-05.
  12. ^ Eaton, Kit. "App Smart Extra: Starry Night". Gadgetwise.blogs.nytimes.com. Retrieved 2014-03-05.
  13. ^ Martin, Mel. "Star Walk still out of this world". Tuaw.com. Retrieved 2014-03-05.
  14. ^ Tedeschi, Bob. "Games and Other Diversions to Turn Into Holiday Gifts". Nytimes.com. Retrieved 2014-03-05.
  15. ^ Lazar, Lonnie. "Cult of Mac Favorite: Star Walk (Mobile App)". Cultofmac.com. Retrieved 2014-03-05.
  16. ^ "The Night Sky In Your Pocket". Soggyastronomer.com. Retrieved 2014-03-05.
  17. ^ Walter, Derek. "Best Educational Apps For Students And Teachers". Redorbit.com. Retrieved 2014-03-05.

External links[edit]