MAY 08, 2018 02:30 PM PDT

This Telescope Lets You Star Gaze With Your Phone

WRITTEN BY: Julia Travers

Hiuni is sending an alert to all star lovers: a new smart telescope and app will let you view the heavens in real time with your phone. Hiuni is designed to relieve the stress and work of manual telescope adjustments and invite all to become astronomers at home. As the Kickstarter page puts it, Hiuni is “designed for shared live-view stargazing experiences and fun learning right out of the box.”

Hiuni Kickstarter video screenshot, credit: Hiuni

Anyone with a smartphone, tablet or another device that runs iOS and/or Android apps can use Hiuni. Hiuni astronomers can view live and enhanced imagery of the night sky through their phone screens. Night skies can be watched through the Sky View setting, which offers a wide-angle map of your sky. A Space View is also available that is closer up and relies directly on the telescope’s six-inch aperture, which gathers “the optimal amount of light for star-gazing.”

Once you have downloaded the app and set up your telescope, you can input the star or other celestial body in which you are interested. This educational and diverting telescope will locate and navigate to your preferred view. It can also track a chosen star overnight. And, if you aren’t sure where to start or what to look for, the Hiuni app’s “Good to See Guide” will automatically sense and report objects that are observable where you are. It uses a built-in sensor array consisting of an accelerometer, magnetometer, gyroscope and GPS to offer these helpful features.

Hiuni founder and CEO, Jack Chen told Digital Trends:

Everyone remembers that first time they looked through a telescope as a child. We set out to re-create that feeling for the connected-generation and breathe new technological innovation into a centuries-old invention.

This easy to use WIFI-enabled scope and app also provide multimedia and educational content to complement and broaden the sky-watching experience. These options include a celestial event calendar, constellation identification illustrations, augmented imagery, video and audio, along with interactive tours, storylines and discovery programs that introduce relevant scientific and historical information. Games, challenges to unlock and badges are also included for the playful and ambitious. The company hopes the use of fun extension activities and the availability of expert astronomers as digital tour guides will help space seem more accessible and engaging.

Hiuni is a compact, Cassegrain-style of telescope – these designs use lenses and mirrors to allow for magnification within a compact length of tube. Hiuni offers a resolution of 1,280 x 1,024 pixels and stellar views can be shared with other devices through QR code scanning.

Hiuni’s Kickstarter runs through June 17, 2018, and before May 11, it offers the telescope for a pledge of $489, which they say is a 59 percent discount off the future retail price of $1,109. After this date, the campaign’s special price goes up to $879. Delivery is slated for June 2019.

Oh, and if you’re curious about the name, it comes from this star-friendly sentiment: “Hi Universe, nice to meet you.”




Digital Trends

About the Author
  • Julia Travers is a writer, artist and teacher. She frequently covers science, tech and conservation.
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