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SkyView - Explore the Universe
A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this app.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that SkyView - Explore the Universe is an educational astronomy app that uses your location to overlay your view of the sky onto your camera view. Planets, stars, constellations, and satellites are magnified so you can "see" where they are during the day or night. Tapping on objects allows you to read numerous facts about them and track their movement through the sky. You can also search for objects that are above the horizon and follow an arrow on the screen to locate them. A few constellations come from myths that include violence or sex, but descriptions are not lurid. Wikipedia is the source listed for many of the facts. The app will ask permission for your location, or you can enter your location manually.
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What's it about?
In SkyView Universe, kids can see what's in the sky above them. They point the device in any direction and see what planets, constellations, and even satellites are in the sky. When they see something, they can tap on it, and then read a bunch of facts about it: Did you know that one moon day is about 27 Earth days? Kids can also see the sun, moon, or a planet's path in a 24-hour period –- even a period in the future! There’s a lot of information here, so parents may want to help guide kids through it.
Is it any good?
SKYVIEW - EXPLORE THE UNIVERSE is an excellent tool for learning about the astronomical universe. It is similar in many ways to other astronomy apps available, but its ability to search for an object and its overlay of objects on your personal camera view are neat features, as is the inclusion of man-made satellites and their histories. It can be hard to adapt to the app's controls at first, but once you get used to how to move your device, the app is very powerful and exciting.