Today Paramount Digital Entertainment announced their new iPhone application, Star Trek Captain’s Log. The new app is designed to look like a communicator from the new Star Trek movie, but instead of making calls with it, you use it to make create "captains logs" which you can share with your friends. I have been playing with this fun app for a few days – the TrekMovie review is below.
REVIEW: Star Trek: Captain’s Log
iPhone Application – from Paramount Digital
Available at Apple App Store – $1.99
Two weeks ago CBS released an iPhone app which makes your iPhone resemble an original series communicator, allowing you to make phone calls old-school Kirk and Spock style. That application is cool, but it is essentially a skin for your phone or can be used for cosplaying. The new Captain’s Log application from Paramount also looks like a Star Trek communicator, but this time based on the new look from the Star Trek movie. The interface comes complete with sounds and animations from the movie as well.
Star Trek Captain’s Log app uses "Star Trek 2009" communicator design
But when you pop it open (with a flick of the wrist or by sliding open the ‘lid’) the similarities between the Star Trek Communicator app and the Star Trek Captain’s Log app end. This application is designed to be an "exploration tool" where you can record "Captain’s Logs" as you go about your daily travels. Click the big communicator button and you get to the Log Entry screen which allows to create a log with a title, audio, a picture and text. You can also add some built in Star Trek sound effects and images. If you have an iPhone 4 you can use either the forward facing camera or the regular camera for your log.
Captain’s Log lets you create logs with text, audio and an image
Once you record your log it gets placed on a map using your GPS coordinates (each log is placed on the map with your choice of Starfleet Command, Science/Medical, Engineering badge, or Klingon or Romulan badges). You can then choose to make it private or available to be seen by any other "captains" who view the map with their Captain’s Log app. Your log is also updated to a website and (via the application) you can share a link to the log via Facebook, Twitter, Tumbler or email. But if you are concerned about privacy you can keep your logs to yourself.
Captain’s Log map with icons for each "log"
This weekend at the Star Trek VI screening I was moderating with George Takei I created a couple of Captain’s Logs with my iPhone. The interface is easy to use and recording my own voice log, with my sighting of "Captain Sulu" was fun (see the log w/ photo and audio). It was easy to then share the log with the TrekMovie followers via Twitter (see tweet).
The design, sounds and animations with the app are well done and evoke the new Star Trek movie well, but you can turn off the sounds if you want to be more discreet making your logs. The app even comes with an ‘easter egg’ if you click on the ‘dome’ on the communicator you can explore a 3D model of the new USS Enterprise (see below).
USS Enterprise explorer on Captain’s Log iPhone app.
The Star Trek Captain’s Log app works on iPhone 4 and iPhone 3GS and requires iOS 4.01. According to Paramount, they are also taking a close look at the iPad and Android platforms for possible Star Trek applications as well. They are also already talking about future enhancements to the Captain’s Log app, so hopefully the app will continue to grow over time and add new features, like possibly video or a ‘friending’ feature to follow other "captains".
Overall, the Captain’s Log app should be a fun addition to any Trek fan’s iPhone. It can be a great way to share sightings of strange life forms as you travel around your strange new worlds and for just a couple of bucks this app is more than just a toy, but can also be an interesting extension to your social networking, but now with a Trekkie twist.
Star Trek Captain’s Log is available now at the Apple App Store for $1.99