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GoSkyWatch Planetarium

GoSkyWatch Planetarium

Last changed: Sep 02, 2009

GoSkyWatch Planetarium

Category: Navigation
HomepageRichard Hein
Rating: rating 8(376)
Version: 3.4
Size: 10.6 MB

Price:  $5.99 


Supporting the International Year of Astronomy 2009
*** IYA2009 special: 40% off for a limited time ***
Astronomy on the iPhone/iPod touch. Have fun with family and friends discovering the images in the stars. GoSkyWatch easily locates and identifies planets, stars and constellations. Navigate the sky with a touch or by just pointing to the sky for quick identification. Go outside and explore the night sky.
** Featured in Wired magazine February 09 edition **
Can't decide which of the many star charting apps is right for you? See independent comparison of apps by Weber State University physics professor at:
- iPhone 3GS compass support
- High performance animation
- Point and identify accelerometer based finder
- Over 200 images of planets and deep sky objects
- Planet, star, constellation and DSO ephemeris data
- Time lapse animation
- Full sky 180 degree display
- Below horizon display
- Planet, constellation, DSO and star finder
- Solar system, star and DSO wiki links
- Star and planet brightness and distance display
- Constellation images, boundaries and patterns
- Easy setup using iPhone location or city list
- Night mode for night viewing
* See web site for video demo

GoSkyWatch Planetarium - 0GoSkyWatch Planetarium - 1GoSkyWatch Planetarium - 2GoSkyWatch Planetarium - 3GoSkyWatch Planetarium - 4


See full reviews in other country:  ( total 164 reviews )


Excellent  rating of GoSkyWatch Planetarium
By: Tigerclaw61 - 24-Aug-2008
Version: 2.0
It took a long time to decide between this and Starmap. I chose this one because it seemed very good. I wasn't disappointed. It works very well, and I haven't found a problem with accuracy yet. The web page instructions are easy to follow, and well written. I did find the twisting and turning of my phone a bit awkward to start with, but I got used to it. Okay, it does crash sometimes at startup, but this is a memory problem. If I make sure to close my other apps properly it doesn't crash. It's heavy on memory use, but then there's a lot going on. Conclusion: Well worth the money, really good App. Highly recommended.

nice app  rating of GoSkyWatch Planetarium
By: gnozu - 11-Aug-2008
Version: 1.1
I really like GoSkyWatch. It's intended as a tool to help you work out what's what in the night sky, and it does this brilliantly.
It doesn't have as much data as one of its closest rivals, Starmap (eg no galaxies), but the user interface is really responsive and easy to control.
Crucially for me it tells you what something is as you move objects under the 'crosshairs'. This is in contrast to Starmap where the brightest stars are labelled on-screen, but otherwise you have to search for the thing you want to find and then it will highlight it.
I should point out that after the initial install I had problems with GoSkyWatch crashing each time I tried to set my location. However a quick restart of my iphone, and it's running perfectly now. Memory issues?
I hope future releases of this app will see some deep-space objects added. Otherwise I can highly recommend GoSkyWatch to people who just want to know a bit more about the stars.

2.0 improved a lot  rating of GoSkyWatch Planetarium
By: Dennischung - Aug 23, 2009
Version: 3.3
The star pointing is really working. Needed only one nearby known bright star to calibrate the orientation to ping point wanted object works almost like Celestron SkyScout. Memory management is still a minor problem but improved over past few update. Display of Deep sky objects improved very much through many free updates and now upto the commercial quality. Object founder is a also very good in utilize the accelerometer works just fine having the potential to put the Celestron SkyScout out of business with good compass support.

Brilliantly Designed Star Chart  rating of GoSkyWatch Planetarium
By: bayhuntr - Aug 3, 2009
Version: 3.2
This is a very well done program, easy to understand and to use. I paid more for my first star chart from the app store, it was clunky and slow; this app is in a different class all together. The use of the accelerometer for tracking the shy is brilliant. Update: This program just gets better. The author of this software knows what he is doing. The new interface for time movement is a great impovement. I can't wait until the 3G S compas is incoporsted into the software.

Unlocks the heavens  rating of GoSkyWatch Planetarium
By: josh_atl - May 7, 2009
Version: 3.1
I've always been vaguely interested in learning more about astronomy, but living in the city (as most of us do these days) I always figured there was to much light pollution to enjoy the stars. I bought this program at Version 1.0 figuring I'd break it out on camping trips, and was delighted to discover how many constellations I can see even in the bright skies of downtown Atlanta. The ability to adjust star magnitude helps a great deal, since you're not looking for stars that you won't be able to see. I've since started learning more about the legends and history of the constellations, complemented by the app's addition of links to Star Tales information. Picture lying on your back looking at the sky, the stars and Milky Way overhead and a Rosetta Stone to it all in the palm of your hand... you get the idea. Can't wait to see what future versions hold in store.

Best astro app for iPhone so far  rating of GoSkyWatch Planetarium
By: Azstrgzr - Dec 29, 2008
Version: 2.1
(Dec 29 2008) I purchased this and 2 other astronomy apps and so far, I like this one the best. The interface is very responsive and easy to use. I think that the simple interface is this program's greatest virtue. One nice feature of this software is it's ability to display info of planets, stars and deep sky objects. Other than brightness, altitude and azimuth etc., it would be nice if rise and set times be included.

Works Great, but Needs Location Memory  rating of GoSkyWatch Planetarium
By: Traveling Skywatcher - Oct 7, 2008
Version: 2.1
This app has helped me to learn more stars and constellations, great fun. Managing the display takes some getting used-to, but it's handy once you become familiar with it.
One major shortcoming is the location selector... You can enter your current latitude and longitude (when you are out of wi-fi range), but it doesn't save your custom location to the list of locations it provides. I often travel from one remote (wi-fi-less) location to another where I watch stars, so I have to re-enter the latitude and longitude every time I travel to another of these no-wifi locations. It's a pain.

Buy This Application  rating of GoSkyWatch Planetarium
By: 10astronomer01 - Aug 24, 2008
Version: 2.0
Version 2.0 is excellent and everything it doesn't provide (which is very little) can be easily found on safari. Being able to locate the moon, planets, stars, constellations, and deep space objects unseen to the human eye is well worth the price. This is a must have application for stargazers, students, astronomers, and people who simply want to understand the night sky. I was 110% satisfied with GoSkyWatch.

You Should See What You're Missing!  rating of GoSkyWatch Planetarium
By: Boo125 - Aug 15, 2008
Version: 2.0
This is just one beautifully crafted application. The quality of the graphics and their responsiveness are phenomenal. The application is very straight forward and allows you to navigate the night sky with ease. This is just perfect for amateur astronomers and beginning skywatchers. I can now locate the stars and planets whereever my family and I happen to be. The 2.0 version has corrected the occasional instability. It also added deep space objects for those more telescopically inclined. The accelerometer feature allows you to track your view of the stars with the iphone screen. This feature is quite easy to use with just a little practice. I would certainly recommend this program to any friends and family that have any inclination to gaze up at the stars at night.

Makes the sky come alive  rating of GoSkyWatch Planetarium
By: James Polley - 14-Oct-2008
Version: 2.1
I've played with planetarium software on phones before, but I've never been able to translate what I see on the screen to what I see in the sky. With GoSkyWatch, it's easy.
- Figure out roughly which direction you're looking - in my case, I knew I was looking west
- Play with the magnitude control till the number of stars on the screen looks similar to what you can actually see - for me, in the middle of Sydney, right after sunset, that meant about magnitude 3.2
- Fiddle with the mapping between rotating the iPhone to change the compass bearing - took about 30 seconds to figure out, by far the most complex part of the process
- raise the phone to point at the brightest light in the sky - and find out that it's Venus.
Okay, so finding out that the one big bright star in the west just after sunset is Venus is no big deal, any 5th grader could tell you that. What was astounding was that I was then able to quickly find out that the next brightest light was Jupiter, that between them were Antares and a few other stars, the the one off to the NW on its lonesome was Vega... I saw the tail of Scorpio for the first time!
Let's be honest, $12.99 (Australian) makes this one of the pricier apps - but it's less than the cost of a movie, for far more enjoyment. Well worth it!

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Good app but needs improving..  rating of GoSkyWatch Planetarium
By: Candymancan21 - Sep 3, 2009
Version: 3.3
Im debating to label this 3 or 4 stars. I would give it a 5 if it had a higher magnitude of stars of the map. It only goes to 6.5 this means its impossible to star hopp with so it doesnt replace having a laptop and using the program stellarium. Its very accurate when it comes to Coordinates, so i can use my compass and point right in the direction. However even with the Altitude and Azumith you cant possibly point directly on the object. You have to look in a wide angle eyepeice and go by the stars to find exactly where the object is. So with the lack of many stars on the map for this program you cant star hop. Another thing that drives me crazy is when i pinpoint the object im looking for on the map and move my ipod around or something the whole map will spin around and i have to find the object again. I wish they would take that out of this program...
Anyway its a good app and im glad i bought it. I've found the omega,dumbell,lagoon nebula's with it and like 10 clusters.

Good App  rating of GoSkyWatch Planetarium
By: Dangerous 3011 - 05-Jan-2009
Version: 2.1
Excellent! I have not tried any of the other apps that are similar but I don't think I will bother as this does just what I wanted. I have not suffered any of the crashes that some have so no problem there. The only things I think need changing are 1. In night view when you play the 'movie' and want to return to current time and date it goes to full brightness and can dazzle you a bit and 2. It may be a good idea to be able to save your current location as one of the presets so that it would save on time and power on startup.

Why all the whinging  rating of GoSkyWatch Planetarium
By: Lurgy - 28-Jul-2008
Version: 1.0
It works fine for me, and it did this first time. My only issues with it might be that it seems to have inverted East and West, but I suspect that's because I wasn't holding my iPhone up to the sky, and I've marked it one star down because the accellerometer navigation doesn't seem to work (agin, this might be due to the way I've tried to use the app). The next cloudless night I get I'll be out there checking if the error is mine.
In short, worth the money, and will probably serve as an excellent aid when I'm sailing (which is why I purchased it).

Good app but needs improving..  rating of GoSkyWatch Planetarium
By: Candymancan21 - Sep 3, 2009
Version: 3.3
Im debating to label this 3 or 4 stars. I would give it a 5 if it had a higher magnitude of stars of the map. It only goes to 6.5 this means its impossible to star hopp with so it doesnt replace having a laptop and using the program stellarium. Its very accurate when it comes to Coordinates, so i can use my compass and point right in the direction. However even with the Altitude and Azumith you cant possibly point directly on the object. You have to look in a wide angle eyepeice and go by the stars to find exactly where the object is. So with the lack of many stars on the map for this program you cant star hop. Another thing that drives me crazy is when i pinpoint the object im looking for on the map and move my ipod around or something the whole map will spin around and i have to find the object again. I wish they would take that out of this program...
Anyway its a good app and im glad i bought it. I've found the omega,dumbell,lagoon nebula's with it and like 10 clusters.

Great app, could use some additional features  rating of GoSkyWatch Planetarium
By: Dan5555 - Sep 20, 2008
Version: 2.1
I’ve checked out the current astronomical offerings, and StarMap and GoSkyWatch seem to be the only two worth looking at for serious star gazers and amateur astronomers. Overall GoSkyWatch is a better, more usable application, but StarMap has some nice features too. They both do a good job of rendering the sky and providing the information you need to find things. But there are some significant differences.
SkyMap - Has nice images for many of the DSO’s. Makes it easy to get information on objects by tapping on them. The red night mode is great in that it applies to all screens. And it has a red “flashlight” mode although I’m not sure how useful that will be. The user interface and number of settings available is a bit better than GoSkyWatch. It also has a screen of information on rise/set/transit times for the planets and moon, and it can show the outline of the milky way on the main sky view.
But the big problem here is performance. It is VERY sluggish and unresponsive to the point of frustration. Many times I do the pinch thing to zoom in and it does nothing.; I try several times and finally it responds. Moving around the sky is also slow. It just has the feel of a creaky old piece of software. This is very disappointing because in most other ways I like it better than GoSkyWatch, but the performance hit is not worth it. A couple of other minor complaints: The labels can be hard to read with blue on darker blue, and when zooming in and out the stars are sometimes overwhelmingly large and contribute to clutter so you have to dim them down. Also, the sky can only be zoomed out so far - you can’t get a full sky chart. And, you can’t go below the horizon to see what’s coming up.
GoSkyWatch - After using SkyMap for a while, going back to GoSkyWatch was absolutely refreshing! It takes a long time to start up but once you’re there things are wonderfully quick and responsive. zooming works every time, and the sky follows your finger around the screen just like it should. You can zoom out to a full sky chart and see below the horizon if you want.
Due to performance alone, I will be using GoSkyWatch. The speed of the interface in SkyMap is just too painful. But I would love to see GoSkyWatch add some other features that SkyMap has such as the Milky Way outline, the ephemeris information, and the images for DSOs. Also, the red night vision mode in GoSkyWatch does not take effect for any screen except the main sky view.
One very useful piece of information in the field is the times for civil, nautical, and astronomic twilights for the day. Neither of these provide this information and they should.
Too bad there isn’t an application with the features of SkyMap but the speed of GoSkyWatch. But for now, GoSkyWatch is very useable. SkyMap is just too slow.

Almost Perfect  rating of GoSkyWatch Planetarium
By: vertbird - Sep 9, 2008
Version: 2.0
This is a very nicely done app, and most of the reviews here have already covered its many positive features, but I really wish the accelerometer-guided view could be manually disabled. It's a clever gimmick (When it works, that is), but most of the time I just want to move the star map to a specific spot and have it STAY THERE when I move the screen up over my head. Hopefully in a future release the user will be giving the option of disabling this very irritating "feature".

missing one thing  rating of GoSkyWatch Planetarium
By: beigeboy - Aug 16, 2008
Version: 2.0
This app seems pretty good and does the basics. It seems though to be missing one important thing - THE MOON!!
(well one can of course easily find the moon, but it is useful to see where things are in relation to it).
The other thing I'd suggest is to be able to double tap or something to get info on an object or a constellation without having to center it first.
Definitely worth buying for the basic (what object is that?) info.
Could not really get the hang of the motion stuff but I didn't really expect too. iPhone needs a digital compass!

Version 2.0 a huge improvement!  rating of GoSkyWatch Planetarium
By: Dan Schroeder - Aug 13, 2008
Version: 2.0
Congratulations to the developers of GoSkyWatch for fixing the serious problems in the original version, and adding some major enhancements, in only one month. I would now recommend this app to anyone interested in astronomy.
After a few hours of use, I haven't yet experienced a crash with version 2.0. And dragging the chart beyond zenith is no longer so confusing.
Major new features include: (1) time animation at three different speeds; (2) identifying all 8000 stars by their names or Hipparcos numbers, plus magnitude and distance; and (3) the complete Messier catalog of 110 deep-sky objects. These enhancements make GoSkyWatch a serious competitor to any of the other star chart apps, while its amazing responsiveness to zoom and drag gestures puts it in a class by itself.
There are still quite a few details that need work: the difficulty of identifying objects near the poles; the lack of any indication of the moon's phase; the absence of non-Messier deep-sky objects (a serious drawback for southern observers); drawing "horizontal" constellation boundaries as straight lines rather than arcs; and a few other minor annoyances. I'm sure that future updates will fix most of these.
A more fundamental issue is the user interface for identifying objects--dragging the chart to center them in the circle. This procedure works very well, but sometimes I'd rather identify an object without moving the whole chart, and often I wish the chart weren't cluttered by the little circle and the identifying text. Depending on personal taste, some users might prefer the user interface of one of the other astronomy apps.
When you hold your device up to the sky (face down), the accelerometer takes over to control the chart's elevation, while you turn the device to tell it which direction you're facing. So you can identify an object in the sky by centering it in this way. The technique takes a bit of practice, but it does work.
Comparing features (as of 13 August 2008), GoSkyWatch now out-performs iAstronomica in almost every respect. Starmap and Uranus still show more stars and more deep-sky objects (and draw prettier pictures), but both are sluggish and neither will show the whole sky at once or animate the passage of time.

Probably the best choice available  rating of GoSkyWatch Planetarium
By: Reformat Planet - Aug 4, 2008
Version: 1.1
I've been thinking hard about which Astronomy app to go with, and reading up on all the reviews. GoSky does not disappoint. The interface is smooth and beautiful, with great classical representations of the constellations. Planets are easy to identify, although it would be nice to get detailed info and pictures by tapping on them.
I notice some glitches and hang-ups when navigating the location and search menus. It doesn't seem to be too terrible, the program still functions perfectly fine for the most part. I think many of the negative reviews are completely unwarranted, and i'm sure these issues will be fixed in future updates.
Still not too sure about how to use the accelerometer features, better documentation for that in the program itself would be appreciated. Right now, double taps seem to activate it, but it should be linked to an icon or menu item. I originally thought this feature would be a major selling point for choosing an app, but navigation with finger swipes works perfectly fine.
A great groundwork to build on in terms of presentation, style, and functionality. I feel confident about my purchase, and hope to see future updates expand content and fix minor glitches.

Really nice! (but be sure to read the instructions)  rating of GoSkyWatch Planetarium
By: cbmarkwardt - Aug 2, 2008
Version: 1.1
This application is great. I've had it for a few days and I love how I can pull out my Ipod Touch at night and learn the sky interactively. You really need to read the instructions on the GoSkyWatch website to use it in interactive-sky mode. It's not immediately obvious how that works without reading the instructions and practicing it a little, but then it works very well.
I would have given this app five stars, but didn't because it still crashes or freezes some times (version 1.1). Aside from fixing those problems, I would like to see a way to download and view "current events" which highlight comets, planetary conjunctions, etc.

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Worldwide rank of GoSkyWatch Planetarium
Reported by http://www.iPhoneAppsPlus.com Apr 20 2014 18:48:42 View Image
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    United Kingdom1529--
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    New Zealand520280238
    Saudi Arabia4638--
    South Africa1312-237
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    United Arab Emirates4929--

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