New iPhone and Android app lets you travel back in time

New Mobile App

New Mobile App
A new app compatible with both iPhone and Android smartphones, called Historypin, allows users to view historical images of various locations on Google Maps.

With this app, users can view a location they’re seeing in real life, and gain access to a historical image from a few decades ago to almost a full century old, so that users can see how the area has changed using augmented reality technology. Moreover, captions are frequently supplied which explain the changes that the location has undergone between that time and now.

The app is free and offers a growing database of more than 50,000 images from participating libraries and museums. These pictures are linked with specific locations on Google Maps. Nick Stanhope, founder and CEO of Historypin, has stated that he predicts that within a year’s time, the database will have grown to over 500,000 images.


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Since the launch of the Android app on July 11, 2011, there have been 15,000 downloads in that format. Since August 15, 2011, when the iPhone compatible app was launched, there have been over 50,000 downloads of that version.

Historypin is only the latest in augmented reality apps that are becoming available on both Apple and Google platforms. This term refers to a type of program that can layer many forms of additional information over top of a real-time image of the real world in front of us, for the purpose of information, entertainment, or enticement. As of yet, developers have only scratched the very surface of the possible applications for augmented reality.

In the case of Historypin, augmented reality has become the next level of connecting with history and the past.

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