WHAT’S NEW v6.4:
More info on Polar Scope Align on the dedicated page.
WHAT’S NEW v6.3:
– Fix FOV slider for rifle scope reticle.
– Fix for star list version selection. (Pro)
– Can enter decimal degrees for Lat/Lon in Location Manager. (Pro)
– Daytime Alignment tool help sections for Star Adventurer & Polarie users. (Pro)
– iPadOS 16 rotation fixes. (Pro)
– Fix for Xasteria on Apple Watch. (Pro Watch)
– iOptron WiFi Connect changes:
— Directional pad to control mount movement. (Pro)
— Sync To Target ability after a GoTo. Equivalent to 1-star align. (Pro)
— Set/unset Solar/Lunar tracking rate automatically on GoTo. (Pro)
— Updated to identify the newest mounts (HEM27, Skyhunter).
— Support for old mounts with v1.x firmware (ZEQ25, non-Pro iEQ30/45/SmartEQ).
– Xasteria changes: (Pro)
— Upgraded the soon to be discontinued Dark Sky service to the Apple Weather service which replaces it. The forecast is extended to 10 days and a cloud layer option is added.
— New Jetstream link for users in N. America.
— Fix visibility of light pollution map button for newer iOS versions.
WHAT’S NEW v6.2:
WHAT’S NEW v6.1:
WHAT’S NEW v6.0:
WHAT’S NEW v5.6:
WHAT’S NEW v5.5:
– Switch between decimal and min/sec Lat/Lon display on the main screen by tapping.
– Polar star graphic display on polar star info screen.
– Rotated reticle view tool option for polar aligning the Orion/Skywatcher 2012-2032 scope at mount home position. (Pro)
– Presets for Telescope Limiting Magnitude calculator. (Pro)
– Location Manager decimal coordinates switched to lat, lon to match popular (Google maps etc) usage. (Pro)
– Experimental dark web mode that tries to apply a dark theme before showing a site (can be disabled in the popup). (Pro)
– Clearer UI for the multi-selection buttons and the Calculator filters.
– Xasteria changes: (Pro)
— Light pollution button with Bortle class display, that opens a light pollution details page.
— Added Windy.com, Astrospheric, Jetstream forecast to “Other” sources.
— Coordinates switched to lat, lon to match Location manager.
— Clicking the heavens-above.com bottom bar in ISS/Satellite tools opens the relevant Havens Above page.
WHAT’S NEW v5.4:
– Show location name (requires internet).
– Settings button moved for iPhone X+, some fixes for iPhone 12 Mini & Pro Max.
– Gyro calibration in Settings (for Bubble Level, Daytime Alignment, Push-To etc). (Pro)
– iOS location icon to show when auto location is selected. (Pro)
– Give extra time for digital compass response before the “no true heading popup”. (Pro)
– Xasteria changes: (Pro)
— The main display shows the location name when available. Coordinates still available below and also in Location manager.
— Improved Clear Sky Chart page display.
— Replaced obsolete Iridium flares with daily bright satellite passes.
— Fix for ISS passes not returning for some locations.
— NOAA Water Vapor page got alternative links to image loops, second nearest depending on location.
WHAT’S NEW v5.3:
– Added configurable generic rifle scope reticle.
– Larger/bold font for time/date/coordinates on main page.
– EM200/400 and Polarie style reticles: prefer device timezone (minus DST) if possible for offset calculation, improved instructions.
– Fixed issue with settings page layout on some devices.
– Improved Main Screen help.
– Fix for reversed “E/W” in Recent/Favorite location list. (Pro)
– Xasteria: GOES satellite link updates, bold main page font. (Pro)
WHAT’S NEW v5.2:
– Major Xasteria astro weather update: (Pro)
— Added the hourly Dark Sky forecast service for more accurate short-term forecasts.
— Access to nearest Clear Sky Charts for North American users.
— Access to light pollution maps.
— Choice of wind speed units (in stripe/text viewing mode).
WHAT’S NEW v5.1:
WHAT’S NEW v5.0:
WHAT’S NEW v4.10:
Pro-only features updated:
-Meteoblue fix for eastern longitudes. (Pro)
-Upgraded to World Magnetic Model 2020 (magnetic declination calculated for 2020-2025). (Pro)
WHAT’S NEW v4.9:
– Updated Meteoblue to point to their new website (their website now requires iOS 9+). (Pro)
– Fixed DSO DB banner behaviour. (non-Pro)
-Tweaks in polar scope instructions.
WHAT’S NEW v4.8:
– Astro-Physics / TeleVue Systems (Carton Optical) PASILL reticle added.
– PoleMaster view added for South Hemisphere users.
WHAT’S NEW v4.7:
– Landscape mode on iPad for all screens (daytime tool and bubble level will not rotate while you are using them). (Pro)
– Dawes/Rayleigh limit calculator. (Pro)
– World Magnetic Model calculator. (Pro)
– Switched to WMM2015 v2 for the compass magnetic declination. (Pro)
– Covington Grid Method for Polaris circle reticles.
WHAT’S NEW v4.6:
-Added daily altitude graph for objects in the DSO database.
-Vixen Atlux 1983-2012 polar scope added.
-Konus 2000-2020 polar scope added.
-Takahashi 1985 – 2015 updated to look more realistic, minor adjustment to the Classic Celestron/Skywatcher crosshair.
-New polar scope reticle selection screen to accommodate the long list of reticles (22).
-New calculator icon, scroll-to-top button in star lists and other small things…
WHAT’S NEW v4.5:
-Replaced in-app system alerts with custom dark alerts.
-Faster loading DSO DB, meridian transit time and altitude added in object details.
-Landscape mode enabled for iPad. Exceptions: Bubble Level and Daytime alignment tools (for functional reasons), and settings (current design doesn’t fit in landscape). (Pro)
-Moon calendar (and some other) fixes. (Pro)
-Fix rare bug when launching app with watch enabled. (Pro Watch)
WHAT’S NEW v4.4:
-Support for iPhone XR/XS Max.
-Support for the latest Watch Series 4 smart watches. (Pro Watch)
-Polaris info screen with refracted vs true position, meridian crossings / Kochab’s Clock times etc.
-Advanced option to use Gaia Polaris coordinates.
-Xasteria NOAA Water Vapor tweaks. (Pro)
WHAT’S NEW v4.3:
-iPhone X full screen support.
-Bottom bars more consistent.
-Updated instructions (mainly for Astro-Physics RAPAS).
-Fixed performance issue after closing bubble lever or day alignment. (Pro)
WHAT’S NEW v4.2:
– Added Explore Scientific 8×50 RACI PolarFinder.
– Updated reticle help.
WHAT’S NEW v4.1:
– Fix LST calculated for longitude 0 for some users when using auto location. Apologies, this was missed in the 4.0 release.
WHAT’S NEW v4.0:
This was a major release, especially for Apple Watch users, as the extension was rewritten from scratch with a lot more functionality, taking advantage of Watch OS 2.0-4.0 features. A quick preview:
New Watch Features:
– Moon Phase view added to the first screen, moon/sun rise/set times on second screen.
– New (third) screen with the Xasteria weather report.
– Reticle zoom slider.
– Ability to switch mode (Polar Alignment, Bubble Level, Day Alignment, Moon Phase) from the watch.
– Day/night mode switch on the watch.
– Watch type is now automatically detected (manual setting removed)
– Better refresh rate for Bubble level and Day alignment.
Main app changes:
-iPhone X’s Home indicator bar becomes dark when “Night mode” is “on”. (Pro)
-Celestron 7×50 Polaris Finder added.
-“Tool Settings” button in main settings (for global settings previously only reachable through Xasteria). (Pro)
-Moon Phase: Current moon altitude in degrees is shown.
-Calculators: General relativity time dilation and Celsius/Fahrenheit added, default values on all calculators. Long hold on the result of a calculator gives you the option to copy the value.
-Bubble Level: Various improvements including a calibration level display for the compass. (Pro)
-Xasteria weather: Added FAQ, a Fahrenheit/Celsius setting separate from Metric/Imperial (useful in the UK etc) and the background color on the main weather view now shows you whether it is day/twilight/night. (Pro)
-DSO Database: “Sort by distance from me” on search item applies to full list. Return to top button added. Improved the “Point to the sky” function in the Sorting menu with a continuous refresh when you hold the “Select Point” button.
-Lunar calendar: Swipe left/right changes month, Moon phase description added. (Pro)
-Several visual tweaks, most notably a new icon and help fixes/additions.
WHAT’S NEW v3.9:
– US-based server for Xasteria’s main weather service (7Timer), the app will no longer rely on a 3rd party server, which should make it quite reliable. The prediction quality is the same of course – good, but no forecast is close to perfect! (Pro)
– The NOAA water vapor listing in Xasteria got an update, as there was a satellite replacement (GOES-13 retired/replaced with GOES-16). (Pro)
– Clicking on the date or sun/moon rise/set times in the Xasteria results table launches the calendar on the clicked date. (Pro)
– Polar scope reticle centering wizard now has a manual setting tool for mounts whose polar scope does not rotate with the RA axis.
– Fixed behavior of “sort by distance to me” button in DSO DB.
– Bubble level has a more clear indication that you are “level”. (Pro)
– To avoid confusion, the daytime alignment tool selects the target celestial pole by hemisphere instead of where you are pointing to. (Pro)
– Help improvements and quick intro screens when first launching the app and on first visit to the settings.
– Some reticles get a margin when used in the Southern Hemisphere, to allow things like offset display.
WHAT’S NEW v3.8:
– Added rise/set times of objects in DSODB.
– Fixed superimposed Select/Cancel buttons.
– Fixed disappearing copy popup in help.
WHAT’S NEW v3.7:
-Switched to WebKit for faster rendering of help & web pages and copy/paste ability on iOS 11.
-“Force GPS” switch moved to location manager, settings screen label fix for small displays. (Pro)
-Corrected application of stellar aberration – should fix lower culmination discrepancy compared to USNO.
-Added nutation calculation, brings it to about 2-3 seconds accuracy compared to Cartes du Ciel’s apparent coordinate calculations.
-Ecliptic/Equatorial coordinate and Alt-Az to Equatorial calculators. (Pro)
-Julian Date calculator now converts from JD to calendar date and increased to 5 digit (sub-second) precision.
-Atmospheric refraction toggle in advanced settings.
-DSO setting to show apparent coordinates of objects. Bottom buttons reversed to match other tools.
WHAT’S NEW v3.6:
-The “Point To The Sky” sort function in DSO Database now shows icons with the type of objects when showing a list of the nearest objects to where you are pointing.
-When your device does not give the app access to the true north heading, you will be warned and the app will try to calculate true north from the magnetic north.
-DSO DB list view has clearer font.
-Fixed slider/switch issue on iOS 6.
WHAT’S NEW v3.5:
-Point your phone to the sky and sort the DSO database list by distance from where you pointed.
-Fixed Julian Date calculator month input issue.
-A couple of adjustments to the exposure calculator (based on my own eclipse testing).
-When the app upgrades to a new version (not new installations), it will anonymously share the iOS version, reticle and tools used, so that I can focus development appropriately. I intend to keep support for iOS 6/7 devices for as long as I am allowed, even for very few users – but if no users appear to be on an old iOS version, it may be dropped sooner.
WHAT’S NEW v3.4 (2017 Eclipse Edition):
You will note v3.4 has a couple of things very useful for solar eclipses. This was not by chance, as I am going to the eclipse myself. Changes:
-Daytime / no polar scope polar alignment tool implemented (Sun icon). See included help. Works on the watch. (Pro)
-Solar Eclipse presets for the exposure calculator (mostly based on Fred Espenak’s exposure tables).
-Location manager now has a “Map” option so that you can manually set your location by pointing on the map (requires internet connection). (Pro)
-Location manager now shows latitude seconds from your device data (GPS/cellular) in case you need your exact location. You still don’t enter seconds with manual location, as that much latitude precision is not needed for polar alignment. Also, on the upper right of the same screen you see your coordinates in decimal format, in case your mount needs it in that format. (Pro)
-Magnetic displacement shown in Bubble Level & Compass screen. (Pro)
-Water Vapor satellite images source in Xasteria. (Pro)
-Telescope limiting magnitude calculator. (Pro)
-Fixes: Location manager launched from Xasteria was getting its location reset. (Pro)
-Updated to new iOS SDK (better iPad Pro compatibility). Tell me if there are any issues!
WHAT’S NEW v3.3:
– Night mode on/off switch in main settings, applies to the tools that are not related to polar alignment (Calculators, DSO DB etc), as well as help and instructions for better contrast when used in daytime. (Pro)
– New calculators: Solar feature size, Light gathering (Pro) and DSLR exposure calculator. Also, some calculator fields have a button to select from a list of values (e.g. sensor size, reducer focal length).
– Improved look for some tools, increased design consistency.
– Set Zero Position button restored for Skywatcher/Orion 2012-2032 reticle.
WHAT’S NEW v3.2:
-Added Old Celestron CG4/CG5 / Vixen Polaris reticle.
-Calculators improved (e.g. barlows added, icons in list view, localization fixes). (Pro)
-Calculators added (one for free version and more for Pro version including lunar feature size, special relativity time-dilation).
-Alternative forecast options for Xasteria opening in browser window: Meteoblue and Clear Outside (accessible even if Xasteria’s main data source is working fine). (Pro)
-Takahashi 2010-2050 reticle adjusted to not confuse owners of the latest EM-11 version.
-Fixed keyboard not getting dismissed in Set Epoch screen.
WHAT’S NEW V3.1:
-Astro calculators: Over 15 calculators useful for observing and astrophotography, from eyepiece magnification and field of view, to imaging resolution and reducers. (Pro)
-Xasteria uses the 7Timer! service which will be, unfortunately, unavailable for technical reasons for quite a while. Thus, a link to an alternative weather report is provided, and my own server is accessed and a message about the status of the service is retrieved. (Pro)
-Added South Hemisphere versions for two Skywatcher reticles and improved reticle instructions.
-Sharpless 2 catalog added to the DSO DB, as well as 329 named stars and a few more named nebulae, taking the total to over 13000 objects for the Pro version, bright stars added to the non-Pro version.
-Added ability to sort by distance from an alt/az coordinate point in DSO DB.
WHAT’S NEW V3.0:
-Deep Space Object Database with over 12000 objects from several catalogs (Messier, Caldwell, NGC, IC, Herschell 400). The database is searchable and fully configurable with filters, various sorting methods etc. The non-pro version has a smaller database of the Messier and Caldwell objects.
-Reorganized settings screen (reticles were getting to be too many to fit the page!).
-Added Kenko Skymemo RS reticle.
-Added σ Oct version of the Astrotrac.
-Added NexStar named stars list. (Pro)
-Added some missing data on iOptron/Meade Star lists. (Pro)
-Fixed some Iridium Flares and ISS passes not showing. (Pro)
-Fixed dimmer behavior in tables. (Pro)
-Vixen Polarie display shows arcmin instead of years for Polaris location.
-Various tweaks in app layout and help.
WHAT’S NEW v2.11:
-Telrad reticle added.
-Recent location list added in Location manager. (Pro)
-Iridium flares for your location (satellite icon in Xasteria, switch between ISS & Iridium Flares). (Pro)
-Ability to use the time zones of remote locations instead of being fixed on your device’s time zone (Advanced settings). (Pro)
-Show only future ISS passes. (Pro)
-Make it obvious that table cells in star lists and satellite lists expand when tapped. (Pro)
-Fixed cases where the Apple keyboard popping up was not the dark version (iOS 7+). (Pro)
WHAT’S NEW v2.10:
-Details on visible ISS passes over your location (the ISS icon in the Xasteria weather report page). (Pro)
-Fixed display issue when sunset/twilight is after midnight. (Pro)
-Fixed minor layout issues for some iPhones. (Non-Pro)
-Replaced iAd. (Non-Pro)
WHAT’S NEW v2.9:
-Vixen GP/GP-DX polar scope added.
WHAT’S NEW V2.8:
-Separated the very old style Synta (Celestron / Skywatcher etc) reticle from the more common “classic” (and actually current for Celestron, but replaced by most others), in order to match better those two reticles respectively. Reticles list re-arranged a bit.
-The “classic” Celestron/Skywatcher etc reticle can be calibrated (using dift alignment or ASPA) so that its epoch matches yours exactly.
-Advanced settings screen improved, “Always show dashed cross” option added (it helps with some reticles to have a horizontal/vertical line for reference).
-Xasteria shows sun/moon rise/set and twilight times. Choice of twilight type in Xasteria settings. Auto/manual location control from Xasteria page. (Pro)
-Fixed polaris centering problem on Watch when paired with 5.5″ iPhone. (Pro Watch)
WHAT’S NEW v2.7:
-Switched time/date entry fields to local time by default (UTC is now shown below LST) in order to avoid confusion about the date shown. You can still switch to UTC entry in advanced settings.
-General help added (icon on top of main page).
-Sun & Moon Rise/Set times in lunar calendar. (Pro)
-Sky-Watcher Star Adventurer option added in the “Rotated Reticle View” function. Allows you to check polar alignment while the Star Adventurer is tracking. (Pro)
-Added new iOptron named star list. Added Meade LX200 star list. Star lists show more data when a star is selected. (Pro)
WHAT’S NEW v2.6:
-Corrected Synta 2012-2032 reticle name. Celestron hasn’t switched to it so far, only Orion / Skywatcher.
-Lunar calendar. Tap on the Moon! (Pro)
-Moon phase corrected for South Hemisphere.
-Calculating stellar aberration (optional).
-Show atmospheric refraction correction (for Astrotrac).
-Improved alt-az alignment error display page (zoomable, remembers values). (Pro)
-Advanced settings page (with tip jar).
-Fix iOS 9 disappearing image on watch. (Pro Watch)
WHAT’S NEW v2.5:
-Setting the reticle zero point on “new” style Synta (Skywatcher / Orion) mounts that come with the reticle installed in a random orientation.
-“Classic” Celestron / Skywatcher / Orion as well as Losmandy polar scopes get an option to set the “zero position” RA for mounts like modern Celestron GOTOs which you do not have a resettable setting circle. You should only need to find the zero position once.
-Constellations on “Classic” Celestron / Skywatcher / Orion drawn to match reticles (instead of matching the sky).
-Updated Tuthill to better match the actual reticle.
-Updated Takahashi EM200/400 to aid those that have the 2000-2030 version.
-Adjusted location list display (font size & placement) for iOS 9 devices.
WHAT’S NEW V2.4:
-Meade 9×60 Polar Viewfinder added.
-iOptron “Old” scale correction.
-Zoom toggle switch remembers your last magnification setting. (Pro)
-Reticle zoom display improved with polar star location in view and increased max. magnification. (Pro)
WHAT’S NEW V2.3:
-Updated Tuthill Polar Axis Finder.
-Accuracy and elevation data from GPS added to Location Manager. (Pro)
-Polar Scope Align Watch Edition renamed to Polar Scope Align Pro Watch (Apple request).
WHAT’S NEW V2.2:
-Distance listings in miles when switched to Imperial units.
-Updated help for several reticles.
WHAT’S NEW v2.1:
-Xasteria world astro-weather report based on 7Timer! data (hit the new “X” button!). (Pro)
-Added Astrotrac / Losmandy / Kenko reticle support.
-Added Tuthill Precision Polar Axis Finder
-Classic Skywatcher / Celestron… adjusted circle to better match actual reticles.
-Vixen precision alignment method for Southern Hemisphere and alternate reticle.
-Fixed v2.0 scaling issue on Tak 2015 and Tak 2030 reticles.
-Various small fixes.
WHAT’S NEW v2.0:
-Added Takahashi EM200 / EM400 reticle.
-Added Classic Skywatcher / Celestron / Meade / Orion reticle.
-Added Vixen Polar Axis Scope reticle.
-Reticle help button.
-Fixed Sigma Oct display for South Hemishpere.
WHAT’S NEW V1.9:
-Added Orion 2012-2032 reticle for the latest Orion mounts.
-Online place/address search. (Pro)
-More data on iOptron Named Star list. (Pro)
-Auto-location updates immediately. (Pro)
WHAT’S NEW V1.8:
-iOS 9 font fix. Get it if you are on iOS9!
-Local time added.
-iOptron Named Star list. (Pro)
-Fixed negative hour angle display in rotated reticle view. (Pro)
-Fixed manual location entry in Location Manager. (Pro)
WHAT’S NEW V1.7:
-Location manager with world database (cities/towns of at least 1000 population) and ability to load/save favorite locations. (Pro)
-Alt-az alignment error display for mounts that calculate it after star alignment (e.g. iOptron iEQ45, CEM60). (Pro)
-Higher accuracy movement in the Reticle Centering Error screens.
-Offset calculation for Takahashi EM-200/EM-400 users.
-Corrected Tak 2015 label.
WHAT’S NEW V1.5:
-Added Takahashi 2000-2030 reticle.
-New Watch Edition released for those who have an Apple Watch.
WHAT’S NEW V1.4:
-Added bubble level and North heading (Pro).
-Cleaned-up design, especially settings page.
-Fixed iOS 6 launch issue (non-Pro).
WHAT’S NEW V1.3:
-Takahashi 2010-2050 reticle added.
-iOptron ZEQ/CEM users get rotated display for polar alignment even when the mount is not in zero position. (Pro version)
-Red/White light control & back LED light. (Pro version)
-For reticles with year-cycle markings, the year cycle notation for the polar star position is listed on the lower right of the reticle.
-Fix PM bug when 24-hour time is disabled for some locales.
WHAT’S NEW V1.2:
-Zoomable reticle view. (Pro version)
-Improved Astro-physics RAPAS reticle.
WHAT’S NEW V1.1:
-“Force GPS” option (try it if you don’t seem to get a location update at rural areas with no cell signal).
-Expanded dimmer to all screens (pro version).
-Fixed installing Free instead of Pro version for some devices (sorry).