Technology nowadays is an incredibly useful thing. With the rise of smartphones, people have been able to do so many things on the go on these little handheld computers.
But what does this mean to us hunters? Well, we’ve become pretty high tech, what with the how advanced trail cameras have gotten, if trail camera reviews are anything to go by. What’s more, there are smartphone apps out there that will help make trail cameras more useful. Here are 10 of the best of them:
Trail Cam Control (Android)
What makes this app so special is the 2-way GSM. Don’t know what that is? You don’t need to — other than that it uses your mobile network to remotely control trail cameras from many different manufacturers. Normally, trail cameras can be a bit of a hassle to check up on every so often. Driving up to the hunting range to see if they’re still working and still taking photos not only takes times, but it provides ample opportunity for you to taint the hunting grounds with your scent.
This app thankfully removes much of the hassle of having to manually manage your trail cameras. When you sync up and register your trail cameras with this app, you will not only be able to take pictures whenever you want, but you’ll be able to have the app e-mail or text you the pictures whenever you need, as well as adjust camera modes and sensitivity from the app. You’ll also be able to know the status of your cameras with the app.
That being said, this is an Android-exclusive app, so those with iPhones or iPads will be out of luck. Additionally, the app still seems to be somewhat limited with supported trail camera models, covering mostly Uovision, Lunarex and Spartan trail cameras, among others. But, since the app is free, you’re not risking much checking out this one.
Whitetail Freaks (iOS and Android)
Compatible with both Apple and Android devices, the Whitetail Freaks app works as an organizational tool for managing your property or plot of a hunting ground. With this, you can mark where you’ve positioned your trail cameras on an online photographic map of the area, as well as make notes on their status and activity. You can also use the app to keep track of tree stands, trails and pretty much any other vital aspect of the hunting property in question.
This app is amazing for anyone wanting to keep track of all of the structures and devices they have out on a property. It’s quite easy to lose track of where things are whenever you first set up on a particular plot, and having to aimlessly wander around to find where exactly you placed that trail camera increases your chances of having your scent rubbing off on the area. This app lets you keep track of your cameras without the deer keeping track of you.
There is some concern because this app hasn’t been updated in quite a while — the iOS app store lists the app as having last been updated in 2012. So before you spend the $3 the developer is asking, you might want to make sure it is compatible with your device, as there doesn’t seem to be any guarantee that it works with newer devices.
WildlifeCam — 4G Trail Camera (Android)
Do you have an old android phone or device that you no longer use anymore? Do you mind spending $15 on an old prepaid android phone? Truth be told, it’s much easier and cheaper to get your hands on a cheap android phone than it is on a cellular trail camera, and the developers of WildlifeCam must have known. Their app allows you to turn your old or disposable android device into a formidable trail camera, complete with many of the functions of a more expensive wireless trail camera.
Some of these functions include the ability to adjust what sets off the trail camera phone, what times the camera needs to be active, capture duration, image quality and so much more. The app also doesn’t make any sounds, and it doesn’t need to phone’s display to be on while in use, so the risk of having your phone trail camera disturbing the wildlife is virtually non-existent. And since the app sends all of your photos to an online “cloud” server that you set up, your photos are always easy to access.
Since this is another Android-only app, iPhone users will need to look elsewhere for an app like this. Additionally, only android users with Operating Systems 4 and 5 may be able to use this app, as newer operating systems remain untested, and older operating systems do not work with the app. But, if you can get it to run on your disposable device, WildlifeCam is an excellent free app.
Quiver Hunting App (iOS)
While more of a hunting app in general than an app strictly for trail cameras, Quiver is still an ideal, iOS-exclusive solution for those looking to improve their hunting trips. This app is made to help track and tag deer, as well as make notes about your hunts, pinpoint where you’ve shot at your deer and use weather conditions and other environmental factors to help predict your deer’s movement patterns.
Used in conjunction with trail cameras, this is a very nifty app to use. You can mark locations confirmed by your trail cameras as deer hotspots in this app and continually track them using the cameras. The app will help you keep track of the information you’ve gathered with your trail cameras, making the two a formidable combination.
The most glaring flaw this app has — other than being only for iOS devices — is there is no easy option to edit hunting data after recording an encounter. Since it’s hard to enter all of the necessary data when coming face-to-face with deer, this flaw is pretty significant, but it’s not enough to keep me from recommending this completely free app.
HuntForce is a paid subscription service that allows you to keep track of deer, as well as organize trail camera photos. Just by this, it would seem like this paid service does what many of the apps in this list do, but that’s not exactly the case. HuntForce also provides reports and advice on what to do next based on the pictures you’ve captured with your trail cameras, helping you improve your skill as a hunter.
This service is absolutely fantastic for novice hunters who are still learning the ropes with regards to deer movement, and this iOS app certainly conveys this. The app itself, which is free, is just another way to interact with the service’s features, and it’s a much more elegant solution than having to open up their website from a phone’s web browser.
Of course, this all means little if you’re not willing to spend the $5 a month for HuntForce’s premium service. There is a Free variant of the service, but the features you get with this one are painfully limited, and the option is only there for people to try out the service before buying anyway. If you do like it, though, you may want to invest in the $9 a month Pro service, which has the best features. Ultimately, it’s up to you on if you want to pay for a monthly subscription for these features.
Bushnell trail cameras are known as some of the best on the market, and its Wireless Trophy Cam app certainly reflects this. Designed specifically for the wireless Trophy Cam, this app is designed to simplify and make efficient having to adjust and tinker with the camera from afar. Needless to say, it does this quite well, with a lot of features and a great display of what your cameras are looking at.
These features include adjustable shutter speed, image resolution, delay intervals, LED flash intensity, motion sensitivity, and an easy way to monitor your cameras’ batteries and storage capacities. Nearly every aspect that can be adjusted on your Bushnell Trophy Cams can be done so with this app, making it easy to do so without having to manually make adjustments yourself.
Unfortunately, this app does seem to be pretty old. While the app was last updated earlier this Spring, reports seem to indicate that customer service is rather unresponsive. Additionally, some people have had problems with the cameras disconnecting from the app without warning, though hopefully a fix for this will be out soon. But when the app works, it’s the best for this particular wireless camera!
AccuWeather (iOS and Android)
Don’t underestimate the power of an accurate weather prediction! AccuWeather is not a hunting app nor a trail camera app by any means, but being able to tell what weather is heading your way can be an invaluable tool for anyone planning to go outdoors. And, unlike a newspaper or a TV weather station, AccuWeather will keep you informed on any changes in the weather forecast, even when you’re out on the hunting range.
The primary advantages to this app, as opposed to other weather apps, is just how easy it is to read the information presented. Everything in the app has a nice, clean look to it, and it’s easy to tell what temperature it will be at what time, in what area. Additionally, there is an optional premium version of the app that costs a little extra ($4), but that features a weather report that updates even faster than the free version, in real-time when connected to wi-fi or a phone network.
If anything negative could be said about this app, it’s that it’s still vulnerable to the failings of any other weather-telling service. In other words, it’s still not a perfect indicator of what weather’s coming up next. Still, for those planning any sort of excursion, hunting or no, being able to know the weather is an invaluable tool, and AccuWeather helps in that regard.
iHunt Journal (iOS and Android)
The iHunt Journal is another app that allows you to keep track of a wide variety of different aspects about your hunting ground, whether it be where you’ve placed your cameras and stands or where you have sighted or felled deer. What sets this apart from other apps like it, however, is just how detailed it lets you get with organizing information, and it does so in a very easy-to-read manner.
Some of the features included in this app include managing trophies, the ability to write stories to go along with the data you’ve entered, GPS tracking, weather predictions and many of the other features listed in similar apps, only with more customization. This is by far one of the most polished-looking apps on this list. Checking it out is highly recommended.
Unfortunately, there is one negative point about the app, and it’s a pretty big one: the price. The app is $9 on the iOS store and $6 on the Android Play Store. This is by far one of the most expensive apps on this list, but if you’re willing to spend that much on an app that will allow you to organize your hunts to the most minute detail, it is well worth the investment.
Hunt Predictor is an app that combines the functionality of both a weather app and a hunting advice app, allowing you to predict whether or not today’s hunt will be a productive one, going by environmental factors. This app also includes the option to pinpoint and mark the location of your stands and cameras, allowing for some organization over your hunting ground.
The main draw of this app is just how well it predicts your hunting chances based on the weather. While one could download a separate weather app and a separate app on hunting organization and advice, Hunt Predictor combines the some of the features of both into a very easy-to-use package.
The only downside is that, since it only dabbles in some of the features of other apps, it’s not as effective in predicting weather or keeping track of hunting ground aspects as apps designed specifically for those purposes. Of course, as it is free and not very memory-intensive, Hunt Predictor is a nice alternative for those not wanting to get a lot of apps.
HuntStand (iOS and Android)
Much like Hunt Predictor, HuntStand is a free all-in-one app that makes predictions about your chances at sighting whatever it is you’re wanting to hunt, as well as lets you organize information on your hunting ground. The primary difference this app has over Hunt Predictor, though, is just the sheer amount of features included in this app.
With HuntStand, you can not only put down markers on a map to indicate significant points across the grounds, but you can also highlight specific parts of the map to indicate where deer might be, or something of that sort. The app also works offline, as it downloads maps and information to your device that it can use whenever you’ve entered an area without cellular signal or wi-fi.
The primary thing going against HuntStand, however, is just how crowded maps tend to look on the app. In fact, compared to Hunt Predictor, HuntStand looks quite cluttered and hard to read. This is inevitably a result of having more features, but it’s an inconvenience nonetheless. Additionally, you will need to create an account for the service (though it’s free) before you can keep track of information using the app.
Out of all the apps listed here, I would have to say that my favorite app of all of these is HuntStand. Despite its cluttered look, you simply can’t beat its same functionality and features as apps like HuntForce or Hunt Journal without the price tags using those apps demand.
The app features the ability to easily share hunting and tracking information with friends, allowing for multiple hunting parties to team up. You can also sync your maps with other devices, uploading information to other phones or your personal computer. You’ll be able to plan out future hunting trips using the information gathered on your most current excursions.
But, aside from being completely free, one of the best features of HuntStand is just how well it works in places without internet. Many hunting grounds do not have cellular towers to constantly provide an internet connection to your cellular device. Additionally, many hunters prefer going out into the wilderness where there isn’t any cell phone signal. HuntStand may not have the sharing capabilities it does when online, but you can still read and track maps with it offline.