Google Sky Map allows you to explore the night sky just by pointing your phone to space. The screen serves as a window onto the sky, whereby you can explore the relative positions of planets, stars, constellations, and more, in realtime.
In the auto mode, Google Sky Map works just like a compass. As you move the phone, the view on the screen moves. Pointing the phone to a particular star allows one to find out its name. To find out what our fellow stargazers can see from the other side of the earth right now, point the phone to the ground. To find out what is in the sky in the afternoon, point the phone to the ceiling if you are indoors.
If you prefer, the traditional manual mode is also available. Just open up a zoomed in sky map (the whole celestial sphere) and explore by sliding your fingers across the screen.
An extensive database is also available for you to search for a particular object in the sky.
Everytime I play with this app, I am mesmerized by the dazzling array of stars that surrounds the Earth from every angle, and at any time of the day.
If you are holding on to an Android phone, go try it out now!