The app Star Chart has just released a major update in the Store. For the astronomy-astute amongst us, this app needs no introduction, but for those of you who doesn’t know the app, it is a Sky-mapping app. With this app you can take a virtual journey through the Universe. The initial release of the app was just a teaser with the publishers dipping their feet in the Windows 8 Metro waters, now they’ve taken the full dive:

Star Chart, the definitive star-gazing and astronomy app, gives you a virtual window into the visible universe.
Make the most of your powerful Windows 8 device and hold it up to the sky. Star Chart will tell you exactly what you are looking at! Augmented Reality (AR) mode is available on tablets & devices with accelerometer and digital magnetometer sensors.
Alternatively, explore the universe from the comfort of your desktop to learn about the wonders of our solar system and beyond.
Using state of the art GPS technology, an accurate 3D universe and the latest high-tech sensor functionality, Star Chart calculates – in real-time – the current location of every star and planet visible from Earth and shows you precisely where they are; even in broad daylight!
Want to know what that bright star is called? Point your AR device at it – you might just find out it’s a planet!
Want to know how the night sky appears to people on the other side of the earth? Well just point your AR device down!
Want to know where your star sign is in the sky? Star Chart will tell you all this and much more.
So point your Windows 8 AR device at the sky and see what’s out there!
———— Escapist Games will update Star Chart regularly, so please send us your feedback and feature requests to
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Just point and view. Hold your Windows 8 AR device to the sky and peer into the universe.
Alternatively, look around the sky using finger gestures or a mouse – perfect for armchair astronomers!
Share your astronomical discoveries with your friends, with the help of Windows 8 Share.
A powerful and dynamic search function, utilising the new Windows 8 Search.
Supports dynamic device orientation viewing. Allows you to view the night sky whilst holding your Windows 8 screen at any angle.
Accurately depicts all the stars of the northern and southern hemispheres up to magnitude +10 – a total of over 120,000 stars!
Displays all the planets of the solar system, plus the sun and the moon.
Features all 88 constellations, with constellation imagery based on the beautiful artwork by 15th century astronomer Johannes Hevelius.
Includes the complete Messier catalogue of exotic deep sky objects.
Select anything in the sky and get the facts on what you are looking at, including distance, brightness and exact position in the sky.
Very powerful zoom function lets you view the sky in extra detail.
Fully configurable. Star Chart displays only the sky objects that you are interested in.
Allows you to view the sky underneath the horizon, so now you can see where the sun is even at night!
Manually set your location to find out what the sky looks like from anywhere in the world.
Release notes
– General polish & bug fixes.
– Telrad ring around selected object.
– Rotating labels in AR mode.
– Rotation of planets fixed to correct axial tilt.
– Smoother location update
– Fading Messier object so you can zoom through them to see objects behind.
– Localisation fix for some Messier objects
Recommended hardware
Compass, Gyroscope and / or Accelerometer for AR mode to work
Direct X11 compatible graphics card recommended
Windows 8 compatible PC

This update contains the kitchen and sink in the app. The app now supports the full sensors in your device. I am talking of Accelerometer and Gyroscope and Compass support. You can now take your tablet outside on a clear night and let the device identify the constellations for you; starting with our own local galaxy. Boy I am just giddy with the app right now. Everyone can now take a class in Astronomy if you’ve got a modern tablet. How cool is that? There is just one damper on this party, and that is that the app only support x86 tablets for now. If you have a Windows RT (ARM) device, you may have to wait.

I intend to test the app fully after my vacation when I’ll be able to download this 66Mb sized app.

I hope I’ve been able to whet your appetite for this app, if so, please download the app from the following link:

Let me know what you think.