There are some truly beautiful iPad apps on the iTunes App Store, which keep reminding you why you spent $500 on the tablet. When it comes to beauty, one of the few words that are sure to come to your mind (after Megan Fox, of course) are “stars”, “sky” and “moon”. The heavens have always held a certain charm for human beings. Star Rover is an iPad app that will complement your stargazing experience. This app, based on augmented reality, lets its users point their iPad to the heavens, and identifies whatever constellation, star or planet they are looking at. The concept behind Star Rover might not be a completely new one, but it is certainly among the most beautiful iPad-optimized stargazing apps.
When launched, Star Rover automatically detects your current location, and maps out the skies according to it. There are seven modes on offer by the app. You can switch between these modes by tapping their respective icons in the right-side bar. You can configure the app to play continuous background music so that you can really get into the mood for some serious sky-watching.
In compass mode, which is the section dealing primarily with the augmented reality view, you can take the iPad out of your room, and point it at the sky (now, you may look a bit stupid doing that, but the results are worth it). Depending upon the orientation of your tablet, Sky Rover will adjust its own view accordingly, displaying whatever heavenly objects come within the direction the tablet is facing, along with their nametags and other information. Tap a displayed star, nebula or planet to view detailed info on the left side of the screen. In case you are interesting in zodiac signs, the app shows all the astrological data on your screen as well.
If you want to view the stars according to another location or time of day, tap the time or location buttons. The fourth button from top displays a more realistic view of the sky underneath the horizon. To switch back to night mode, press the cloud button once again.
To assist you in identifying stars and planets, Star Rover allows you to toggle on a grid overlay, labels & patterns for constellations, and planetary names. The app is available for free for a limited time. If you own an iPad, don’t miss this opportunity. Hit the link provided below to head on over to its iTunes App Store page.