"The absolute best sun/moon app" • "The only one you’ll need" • "Hella cool complications" • "Planetastic!" • "Artfully beautiful" • "Wonderful App! Nothing else like it" • "Clean, uncluttered, accurate"
Great for Travel planning • Gardening • Photography • Astronomy • Astrology • Yoga • Used by Hikers • Joggers • Surfers • Pilots • Sailors • Worshipers • Farmers • Star gazers
Sundial provides a one-of-a-kind display of the sun and moon rise/set cycle over the 24 hour day. Key event times are displayed, such as sunrise, moonset, and days to next full and new moon. As the seasons change, the yellow “sun is out” arc informs you of the precious daylight hours: shrinking during winter months and expanding as summer approaches. The white inner arc represents when the moon is visible in the sky. Civil, nautical, and astronomical twilights are shown on the solar dial.
Sundial is a "freemium" app: a ton of features are free, with a one-time In-App Purchase for Sundial Premium unlocking additional features and removing some limits. See features for more information.
Want to be notified 45 minutes after sunset to take the dog out for a walk? Piece of cake. Need an alert the day before full and new moon to take rest for Ashtanga yoga? No problem.
Alerts are generated on the iPhone and iPad and require no Internet connection / server. Users can enable one alert for free. An unlimited number of alerts can be defined with Sundial Premium.
Alerts are highly configurable. You can optionally configure:
- Name/text to display with the alert
- When to be notified relative to the event (offset)
- Days of week to be notified
- Alert sound to use
A scrollable preview of upcoming and recent alerts is shown on the app’s home screen.
Alerts: From the Every Day to Life Critical
Sundial users have found uses for alerts I could never imagine. Here are some of my favorite:
- A blind user is reminded to turn on the outside lights near dusk
- A parent gets the kids inside before dark during the quickly changing winter months
- A jogger times her morning run to perfect light, starting the day right
- An astrophotographer uses Sundial to plan the perfect shot
- A farmer uses Sundial to let her hens in and out of their pen around twilight, and grab a good night's sleep herself at the end of nautical twilight
- A surfer has his sunset "catch a wave" reminders
- A military pilot uses Sundial to assist flight planning to assess risk correlated to sun rise/set, moon rise/set, and moon illumination
- A gardener is reminded to shelter her exotic plants from sunlight during the hottest time of the day
- An Ashtanga yoga practitioner is reminded to take rest before the new moon and full moon
- A Scandinavian is reminded to get a little sunlight during short winter days
- A Buddhist monk is notified on the sunset two days before the full moon to shave his head the next morning
- A photophobia sufferer sets an alarm 30 minutes before sunset to head home for the day because driving at night is impossible
Travel to Any Time & Location
You can travel to any date and custom location with Premium in-app purchase, making Sundial an handy tool when planning a vacation or outdoor activity. And time travel is just plain fun: swipe around the dials to move forward and backward, or long press on the left or right side of the screen to experience the changing seasons at warp speed.
The Apple Watch app is no slouch: it has many of the features of the main app and even has time travel through the digital crown and force touch. A custom location selected on the phone can optionally be mirrored to the watch app.
The complication is a mini version of sun/moon dials, with lunar illumination percentage reported in the middle. I hope to offer more customization in the future.
Comparison of Free and Premium Features
|iPhone / iPad / Apple Watch|
|Accurate moon phase display||✓||✓|
|Time travel||± 7 days||Unlimited||iPhone / iPad|
|Library of alert sounds||19 sounds||27 sounds|
|Alert event offset resolution||15 minute||1 minute|
|Sync and backup alert definitions with iCloud||✓|
|Change location||Canned points of interest||Search by name, address, or enter geographic coordinates|
|Add favorite locations||✓|
|Sync and backup favorite and recent locations with iCloud||✓|
|Mirror custom location from iPhone||✓||✓|
Use of Location Services
Sundial requests your location while using the app to calculate solar and lunar times based on your location. If you enable an alert (notification), it will further request your location "Always" (in the background). This is requested to ensure any solar or lunar alerts that are scheduled use an accurate location if you travel several miles or kilometers from where you last launched the app. For example, if you travel to a new city, Sundial will be notified of your location change in the background and will reschedule alerts based on your new location. Watch complications will also be more up-to-date in this mode.
Sundial uses a location mode that uses very little power: it only requests to be notified when a significant location change occurs (via geofencing). For example, you travel a few miles/kilometers. If you go to the Battery settings on your iPhone or iPad, Sundial may not even show up in the list unless you use the time display and keep it open often. Getting occasional location updates and scheduling any enabled alerts just won't use much if any battery life.
About the Developer & Contact Information
Howdy! I'm Mike Muegel, the author of Sundial. I'm an software engineer living in Austin, Texas. Please don't hesitate to contact me if you would like more information about Sundial or would like a promo code for Sundial Premium.