Despite the name, Cosmic Watch isn't just some watch face app. It certainly does tell you the time, but it's much more than that. This app models the solar system and the night sky, helping you to explore the wonders of the cosmos. It just got a big v2.0 update that adds real-time sky views as well as various new display options and data on all the planets of the solar system.
Here's the changelog for v2.0.
- New Sky View: Point your device to the sky and get a real-time look at the constellations, stars and planets
- New Solar System View: complete solar system, heliocentric and geocentric
- Events and Notifications: next astronomical and time related events + get notifications
- New equatorial clock face
- Added a bigger cities database
- Fullscreen: tap the cosmic watch logo
- Celestial Sphere: switch on/off in the Earth View
If you've been using Android for long enough, you might recall Google Sky Map. That app let you see planets and constellations in real time, but Google stopped maintaining it ages ago. With the new real-time view, Cosmic Watch offers a similar experience. Just point your phone skyward, and start looking around. The app can help you find various celestial objects and understand how they move through the sky. It can even tell you when cool astronomical stuff is going down with the new notification options.
There are many different view modes in Cosmic Watch, including a new solar system view. That's a more traditional layout where you can see the orbit of other planets. The app still has the classic "celestial sphere" that shows the Earth with everything orbiting around it. The clock displays look coolest in this mode, but seeing them from the "inside" in sky view mode is cool, too.
Cosmic Watch is a real treat for astronomy fans, but it's not free. The app will run you $4.49 in the Play Store.