After searching in the App Store and testing many different hunting apps, I can’t find that perfect app to meet all my needs when I’m in the field. There are many hunting apps out there that include hunting games or a glorified RSS reader, but nothing for me to utilize this awesome technology to help me with hunting. With that said, I’ll give away for free the tools and functionality that should be in the next hunting app.
First, and most importantly, the app needs to use GPS functionality. I want to be able to mark where I park my truck, I want to mark where my tree stands are, and I want to mark where I see signs of deer. Within each mark, there should be a time stamp as well as an area to write a description for each mark. Tags should also be featured so that I can easily search the marks. I should have the ability to Tweet my location in the woods and also include a description for each Tweet. If other hunters are using the app, it would be great to see their locations as well. Hunters can share their marks with each other; it would be great to see where my friend’s stand is and where he is seeing deer activity. It’s up to the hunter whether or not they want to share their marks.
Next, the app must utilize the device’s camera. I should be able to take pictures of my trophy and add tags and descriptions to those photos. Within the summary there would be GPS coordinates on where the picture was taken. Pictures also have the ability to be shared on the social network, but only if you allow sharing. I can also take pictures of my marks (ie treestand) so that if I share that mark with a friend, they have a visual of what my stand looks like.
The app also needs to have detailed weather information. Weather alerts need to be pushed to my device so I can be alerted inclement weather is on the way. There will also be sunrise and sunset times as well as legal shooting hours.
The perfect hunting app also needs to have a communication platform. Hunters should be able to message each other while they are hunting. As mentioned earlier, it would be great to Tweet from the app. There should be a standard hash tag applied to Tweets for the hunters that are in the woods. My recommendation would be to have #livehunt so users can easily save that search and follow hunters during their hunting time in the woods. While in my stand, I can follow other hunter’s activity right from the palm of my hand.
Finally, when the afternoon sets in and hunting activity is at a low, I should be able to read hunting news. I don’t want to read one hunting news outlet, I should be able to customize what I want to read. There should be a list of all available hunting news feeds and I select which news feeds I would like in my personal feed; sort of like a Google Reader for hunting news. The feeds might include Cabela’s, Outdoor Life, Petersen’s Hunting magazine, FieldJournals, etc. It would be great to read this hunting news from my stand when nothing else is going on.
If someone creates an app like this that contains all of these features and functionality, they can make an awful lot of money. Keep us informed if you are thinking of creating an app like this or if you have other thoughts. As a hunter, what would you like to see in the perfect hunting app?
Dennis McGuire is the owner of the blog
a blog that provides an exclusive social media & mobile applications guide for hunters.