Planning to do a little stargazing this evening? — And I don’t mean stalking celebrities. Before you head out, make sure you have the latest version of Star Walk on your iDevice. Updating to v5.3 of Star Walk and Star Walk for iPad provides tracking and information for several thousand more outer space occupying objects than previous versions.

Star Walk version 5.3 (iPad) - Satellite

Satellite details

Veteran astronomers need not get alarmed that they’ve missed thousands of celestial items because these objects are just new to the Star Walk database. In version 5.3, Vito Technology introduces satellite and space station information. The update provides 8,000 special-interest, weather / Earth resources, communications, navigation (GPS), scientific, and miscellaneous satellites in orbit, including the International Space Station.

This should excite those obsessed with following man-made orbital creations like the ISS, and help those government conspiracy theorists know when it’s safe to go outdoors. Although, I’d guess the paranoid hiding away from the spy satellites may find an iDevice will make it too easy for these devilish agencies to track them. Oh well, on to more important things.

Star Walk features:

• Augmented Reality for iPhone 4, fourth generation iPod touch, and iPad 2
• Star Spotter – real time motion tracking tells you what stars are above you in the sky;
• Satellites Tracking – never miss ISS flying over your head again;
• Time Machine – see what the sky looks like at any moment in the past or future;
• Calendar of Celestial Events: plan stargazing without leaving your favorite app.
• Picture of the Day – stunning pictures from deep space;
• Night Mode – preserve your dark vision to see more stars;
• Search – wondering where Jupiter is right now? Arrow will guide you to it;
• Big Screen – connect a second display to view the sky on a big screen.
• AirPrint, Moon Phases, Info, View from any location, TelRad, Sharing, Bookmarks, and more!

There is just one more thing to mention. Vito has chosen to run what they’re calling the Star Walk Month of Astronomy contest (Official Rules). It will last for four weeks and winners will receive $10 or $15 iTunes gift cards and a t-shirt.

To enter:

1. Share the link to the contest on any of your social profiles (Twitter, Facebook)
2. Give at least one correct answer to any of the questions posted during the Star Walk Month of Astronomy on official Star Walk profiles on Facebook or Twitter. (#starwalk).
3. Don’t forget to “like” Star Walk on Facebook or follow @StarWalk on Twitter to see the questions on time.

The more correct answers you post – the more chances you have to win one of the prizes. Each time you answer a question correctly your name will be entered for the weekly lucky pick for a $10 or $15 iTunes cards and the final pick for two $50 iTunes Cards.

Star Walk is designed for iPhone and iPod touch running iOS 3.0, and available in the App Store for $2.99. Star Walk for iPad is compatible with iOS 3.2, and available in the App Store for $4.99.