Atlas by Collins – Touch The Earth Like Never Before

4.0 Overall Score
Usability: 4/5
Design: 3.5/5
Duration: 4/5

Packed with content | Seven globes to explore | Vastly improved interactivity over physical counterpart

Specific information is somewhat lacking | Extreme zoomed in shows Apple Maps

The Earth is such an amazing and diverse planetary body that is like no other we know of. That’s one of the reason’s a world Atlas is such an intriguing item to have as you can simply spend time exploring the globe, and learning about the diverse cities, landscapes, and regions. A hardbound atlas can only provide so much, but Atlas by Collins is a brand new iOS app that provides a digital Atlas like no other. The app contains seven distinct 3D globes to explore that provide satellite, physical, political, environmental, population, and communication maps.

The app comes with the Satellite globe as part of the download, and you can download any of the additional six at your leisure. The main highlight of the iOS Atlas app is the user interface allowing you to swipe and pinch to move about the globe, and the app is ultra responsive. You then can dive into any particular area, and tap on cities and landmarks to bring up information panels on the particular place. All of the information is included on one screen rather than multiple pages simply due to the interactive digital nature. The paper version is usually superior with offline usage, but Atlas by Collins also has offline support.

Once you branch out into the other globes you see just how much content is provided about our world. The six additional globes not only offer one view, but multiple views per globe. For instance, the physical map provides 3D landscapes to see the topography of the land, and then you swipe to reveal the ocean levels, and then swipe again to see the mountain map. The additional globes offer multiple views on the same theme with color coded views to identify troublesome pollution areas, the countries in the U.N., or the population extremes across continents. Atlas isn’t perfect though, as the info panels are quite basic with virtually no information on cities or states, and just country fact sheets. Also, when you zoom way in Apple Maps appear rather than the same Satellite imagery used in the app.

Atlas by Collins ($1.99, Universal) is packed with content about our globe all available from just a few taps. Theres are in-app purchases to unlock additional maps beyond the single initial offering, but the total $9 price tag is about half the price of a physical Atlas book, and there are many improvements with the iOS version. Atlas by Collins is a should buy that is an extremely deluxe look at our world that offers everything you would expect from an Atlas, but improved with smooth interactivity, and touch controls. You also don’t need to pay for Atlas maps you don’t need, and just the ones you’re interested in that you can get a preview of before buying.

Other HarperCollins Apps:
Brian Cox’s Wonders of the Universe – Wonderful
Fragile Earth – A Brilliant Look At Our Changing World

$1.99, Universal


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