For the past decade, most of us have come to spend a lot of time with our smartphones. We check them first thing in the morning for any overnight messages and then proceed throughout the day swiping every which way through the apps we have let into our lives. And as apps have completely infiltrated our recreational activities, it should be no surprise that there are a number of apps out there for recreational fishing. Below is a list of some of the most common fishing apps, and what they provide or specialize in.
Disclaimer: The Fisheries Blog is not endorsing any of these apps. This is simply an informational overview for those looking to get started with a recreational fishing app.
Fishidy is a free fishing app that you and your friends can sign up for. Built on the idea of “Location, location, location,” Fishidy creates customized maps to show you where you have fished and how well you have done on past trips. Through the shared nature of fishing data, you can also capture more information about what’s biting and where. Membership is free (although remember you are providing the app information!), and a premium membership is also available, which promises more maps and better tips. See the short video below about Fishidy.
Fishbrain is another app that will track your catches. You log what you have caught, and the app analyzes that data for the baits that work, the environmental conditions, and other predictors that might be useful in the future to guide successful fishing trips.
ProAngler is an app that is designed more to plug you into locations and what the pros are saying. In addition to what conditions are like, you can track down nearby bait shops, lists of species you might encounter and their regulations, and live reports from others (including “pros”) with maps. ProAngler is also saltwater-focused.
Fish Angler is another app that tries to give you an overview of what is going on in your area. Seemingly more social media-like than the other apps (although they all are to some degree), you get plugged into a newsfeed and have a network of other anglers to see what others are catching and even compete with them using the app. Of course, you also get maps and local species information and regulations.
To be honest, there is a lot of overlap in these four popular fishing apps. Most will track your activities (fishing trips, catch, etc.) and link you to other fishermen through maps, catch reports, or numerous other ways. Fishidy and Fishbrain have much more of a feel that the focus is on your location and results—similar to exercise apps that closely monitor and analyze your activities. ProAngler and Fish Angler have more of a social media-feel, where the emphasis is on the location and what is going on (fishing reports, species regulations, etc.).
Ultimately, with all the free options, your best bet might be to try a few fishing apps out and see which one best fits your fishing style and information you are interested in when hitting the water.