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March 18, 2017

Photo planning app that helps you track the stars is now on Android

by John_A

Why it matters to you

If you need photography calculators, location scouting, and astronomical planning, PhotoPills could save you cash over buying separate apps — and it’s now on Android, too.

A popular iPhone photography planning app is expanding to Android platforms — earlier this week, PhotoPills launched a beta version on Google Play.

PhotoPills aims to capture that “all-in-one” app title with a variety of different tools for both planning and shooting. Like astronomy-based apps such as the Photographer’s Ephemeris, PhotoPills will tell photographers just where the sun and moon will be and when — and will even tell you which way to point the camera to capture the Milky Way in the night sky.

More: Made for astronomers, this weather forecast is perfect for photographers, too

If those celestial bodies aren’t quite where you want them, the app will also help you calculate when the stars will align, literally. 3D augmented reality views can even help make sure the view is accurate before even beginning the shoot.

But the app also aims to go beyond helping photographers align the sun just right in their landscapes — the platform also acts as a location scouting tool by using Google Maps to get an idea of what an area looks like before heading out. Locations can also be saved as points of interest to head back to later.

Along with the scouting tools, PhotoPills builds in a number of different calculators to assist photographers as they shoot, including long exposure, time-lapse, and star trails. The app will also calculate hyperfocal distance, depth of field, and field of view.

The PhotoPills community also awards $6,600 in cash prizes to the best submitted photos.

While the scouting tool has been on iOS since 2013, the Android variation wasn’t even in the works until last year. The public beta release changes that and — while the beta is still meant to detect bugs — brings an early version to the Google Play Store. The developer says the Android version will have the exact same features as the Apple-friendly variation. Even the price stays the same — $10.

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