Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Android Birding Investment

I am not sure about the relative advantages of the iPhone and Android mobile phone platforms. All I know is that iPhones are more often used by relatively wealthy, older Americans, whereas Androids are favored by younger, poorer, and often foreign users. My understanding is that Android apps tend to be free, but pay their developers through advertisements. Android apps may also be more difficult and more expensive to develop due to the plethora of different Android operating systems. I like my Droid because of its five-inch screen and consequent larger key board.

For birders, one of the advantages of the iPhone is an app called BirdsEye. You can find what birds species are being seen near your location (via eBird). You can find the locations of specific birds. You can set the app to search from 1 to 50 km from your exact location. (The photo above shows Bald Eagles near an observer in Denver). If you use eBird, BirdsEye can show you the locations of bird that you need for your various lists (life, year, county, or even big day). You can quickly locate birding hotspots. Abundance graphs show what birds are most likely to be seen in your location. You can access lists and locations of notable sightings. Most birds have photos and sound recordings, and you can connect to Wikipedia and Flickr (if you are within Internet range). You can read more about this exciting app at the BirdsEye home page.

The BirdsEye folks are developing BirdsEye for the Android. They have come up with an interesting way to fund this development, by giving birders the opportunity to pre-purchase this app for their Android phones. To date, they have raised $33,000 of the $45,000 they need to complete the project. For $20 you will be put on a waiting list for the new app when it finally hits the market. I look forward to the ability to find birds with my cell phone rather than having to do research with eBird from my home or hotel room. Here is a link to pre-purchase BirdsEye.

I have no financial ties to BirdsEye—not even a free app in return for this post; I have already made my pre-purchase. Note that BirdLog is a different app from BirdsEye. BirdLog allows you to enter data into eBird on both iPhone or Android phones.

1 comment:

  1. We use BirdLog but haven't yet got Bird'sEye. One of these days..