iBird Pro Guide to Birds

Category: 

Description of App: 

Scientific American magazine recommends iBird in August 2012 issue, see page 84.As seen in Apple’s TV commercial “We have an app for that” (ibird.com/itchy), iBird is the world’s best-selling birding app, which comes with a powerful decision engine for identifying any bird species of North America in seconds. This latest update adds features that will turn anyone into a birding expert.

  •  BUYER’S GUIDE TO BIRDING APPS – Compare before you buy: ibird.com/compare
  • INCLUDES 928 SPECIES FROM NORTH AMERICA AND HAWAII – no other app comes close to this number of species.
  • INCLUDES 29 NEW SPECIES DRAWINGS.
  • CLOUD SYNC – Automatically syncs Favs, Notes and Settings to the Apple cloud.
  • 38 SEARCH ATTRIBUTES – search by color, shape, song, location, head and body patterns, flight style and much more. Includes a new way to search by color, tutorials on how to use the search and definitions of every attribute.
  • AUDIO SONGS AND CALLS – iBird offers 5 hours of bird songs and calls from the gold standard of recordings; the Macaulay Library at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. 154 more species song tracks than any other bird app!
  • UNIQUE SPECTROGRAPHIC DISPLAY brings insight to the structure of bird songs by allowing you to view the sound's frequency components.
  • SAVE & LOAD SEARCH - Now you can save, load, name and edit your favorite search attributes and use them over and over.
  • CONFORMS TO ABA AND AOU STANDARDS – We are bringing iBird into conformity with the ABA and AOU standard for North America. Check the splits of the Winter Wren and Whip-poor-will.
  • PHOTO CENTER - Photo Center is a gallery for storing and assigning your photos to specific species pages in iBird. It also allows you to share photos via Facebook, Twitter, or email them to friends.
  • SLIDESHOW FOR ILLUSTRATIONS - Now you can watch not just photos but also illustrations in the slideshow with bird songs in the background.
  • TAXONOMIC ORDERING IN FAMILY MODE – Now sort order of species in the Family mode is true taxonomic; alphabetic sort by Family is still available.
  • OTHER NEW FEATURES – Retina icons, new search attributes: Color Prominent, Breast Color, Eyebrow head pattern. All photos have been given descriptive tittles.

AWARDS and ACCOLADES for iBird:

  • MACWORLD'S "BEST REFERENCE APP 2009: 4 ½ out of 5 mice."
  • O'REILLY "BEST IPHONE BIRDWATCHING APP 2009"
  • RUNNER UP: 2011 BEST APP EVER AWARD FROM 148APPS.COM

Standard Features:

  • Parameter driven search engine lets you identify birds quickly, so you spend more time observing and less time reading.
  • Search by Shape, Size, Habitat, Color, Family, Song, Length, Weight, Flight Pattern, Wingspan, and much more.
  • Taxonomic and Alphabetical Family sort options.
  • Hand-drawn full sized color illustrations, with perching and flight views.
  • Multiple professional photographs for each species showing sexes and seasons.
  • Professionally recorded bird calls and songs for almost every species.
  • Shake your device while on a species page to automatically select a new species and play a random bird song.
  • Extensive identification, behavior, and habitat information.
  • Full color range maps.
  • Links to detailed Birdipedia pages and hundreds of Flickr photos for each bird (requires internet connection).
  • Bookmark birds as Favorites for fast access.
  • Date and time stamped Notes for every species account.
  • Use Favorites lists as life list, yard list, travel lists, etc.
  • Favorites and Notes are auto synced to the cloud for backup and editing.
  • Species, common, and family names in English, French, and Spanish (text is English).

As a standalone iPhone app, iBird does not require an Internet connection for access to the information in its database. This does mean that the application is large, so please be patient when downloading from iTunes.

Apple Watch Support: 

Not Known

Version: 

6.0

Free or Paid: 

Paid

Device(s) App Was Tested On: 

iPhone
iPod Touch

Accessibility Comments: 

I found this app to work magnificently with VoiceOver both with speech and Braille. The bird calls tab has a label that says speaker icon, and is apparently an image, but this appeared to me to be self-evident what it was.

VoiceOver Performance: 

VoiceOver reads all page elements.

Button Labeling: 

All buttons are clearly labeled.

Usability: 

The app is fully accessible with VoiceOver and is easy to navigate and use.

Other Comments: 

I'm speaking as a lifelong totally bind individual here: I think having a birding field guide for us to use is absolutely amazing. And this app really shines. The content would be a huge amount in Braille volumes, let alone the audio references. I found the descriptions to be very nicely done, so that I have been able to describe a bird's visual appearance to someone else, and also take a description from somebody and look it up. It's really quite remarkable, and I haven't fully exhausted what this app will do. It is one of your more expensive apps, but admittedly it is for a specific audience: those of us who enjoy birding as a hobby. The sounds are really clear, just as the app describes. If you, like me, are a birder who is also blind, you know how challenging it can be to get good information: most people aren't birders, blind or sighted, and most modern bird books are mainly pictures so having this app as a resource is really a boon. It is a large download, but it doesn't make your device sluggish or unresponsive when sitting in the background, as some large apps might do.