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I need a astronomy app for Android that tells me what I'm seeing right now when I look up into the night sky.

I live in a place where I can look up and see lots of stars, including the milky way. So, I want to learn how to distinguish the stars and formations that I can see above. (I grew up in a large city where there are nearly no stars in the sky at night)

Also, I want to be able to identify satellites that are bright enough to be spotted (like the ISS), preferably with a notification on when they come into view.

Optional: A notification if something cool is about to happen (like a meteroid shower, a nearby comet, etc.)

Its totally fine for me to pay for this app.

  • Did you see ISS Detector Satellite Tracker (Dunno anything about it). It's not so hard finding candidate satellite trackers in the Play Store. – Jan Doggen Feb 9 '15 at 13:57
  • @JanDoggen Yes, but I would like to have a simple interface that covers both the star-watching as the ISS-spotting task. Currently I only have a starmap (which is cool, but lacks ISS and meteroids and such) and a defunct ISS spotting app. I would like to have an all-in-one package :) – Angelo Fuchs Feb 9 '15 at 14:28
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There are a bunch of apps supporting you in watching the Night Sky, even with Augmented Reality. Jan already mentioned Google Sky Map, which clearly is one of the highest rated. For watching satellites, there's also Satellite AR – but that wasn't updated since 9/2011. Star Chart seems to be pretty interesting, not only showing you constellations, but also having a "Time Shift" feature to show you how they have looked 10.000 years ago. And voice commands – so if you feel like, you can tell it "Fly me to the moon...", and it does :) But again, you will miss the satellites here.

Coming closest to your requirements seems to be Star Walk - Astronomy Guide – but it doesn't come for free (USD 3 it is). From the app's description:

Star Walk is the most beautiful stargazing app you’ve ever seen on a mobile device. It will become your go-to interactive star chart of the night sky, following your every movement in real time and allowing you to explore over 200, 000 celestial bodies with extensive information about stars, planets, satellites, and constellations that you find. Even if you’ve never been that into astronomy, Star Walk will surprise you.

Star Walk Star Walk Star Walk
Star Walk (source: Google Play; click images for larger variants)

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You can use Google Sky Map, but it only partially matches your requirements and it has not been updated since 2011. It does not have satellites or notifications.
It has a meteor showers layer, but I do not know how up-to-date that is.

It has been open sourced and renamed Sky Map in Jan 2012. and I have not followed it since (but no updates have appeared in the Play Store since, it's still version 1.6.3). It's obviously a personal project and looks like the authors haven't had/made time for substantial upgrades.
It works pretty well - just point your camera at the sky or search for something.

I tried entering coordinates in the search box (if you knew any satellite position that would be a workaround, because you then know in what constellation to look in), but that does not seem possible either.

enter image description here

Support is in the Google Sky Map group or the Skymap Google+ page.

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SkEye

SkEye is an app similar to Google Sky Maps, but also features a telescope guide. The Pro version (USD 6) has support for satellites and comets. It doesn't have notifications currently (e.g. when Satellites come into view, or other cool things happen); but hey that's a great idea for a future version.

SkEye SkEye SkEye
SkEye screenshots (source: Google Play; click images for larger variants)

Disclaimer: I am the author.


Addendum by Izzy: It features a "time-machine" (jump to any date to see how the sky looked then), a mini-NGC catalog, night mode, and more. You can also discover some objects of our solar system, see the second screenshot, or search for objects.

  • Thanks for the edits @Izzy. It doesn't have notifications currently; but hey that's a great idea for a future version. I hope this answers Angelo's questions. – HRJ Oct 28 '16 at 5:07
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    Glad to help – and thanks for adding the last missing detail! Note you always can edit your own posts with updates. And PS: I've included your app with my listing for Astronomy learning apps, linking to your answer here ;) – Izzy Oct 28 '16 at 11:40

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