I don’t know about you, but my cell phone goes pretty much everywhere with me. It’s always a great idea to have your phone with you at the range, but did you know your cell phone can actually help to improve your shooting?
The App Store is now bursting with newly developed apps that can help you out –such as if you’re looking for accuracy tips, or want to catalog your inventory of firearms and accessories. Whether you’re a professional shooter, a firearm enthusiast, a huntress or a collector, there’s an app available that can be an asset to you.
I’ve broken down some of the most popular firearm-related apps. To find more, all it takes is a quick search in your app store using some of these keywords: firearms, shooting, guns, gun laws. Some apps are available for free, some require small fees. Some of the popular paid apps have free versions that include limited functions and advertisements. While less functional, downloading the free version can be a great way to see if an app is going to work for you. Sometimes only a paid version is available, I’ve found reading the reviews can help determine whether the price is worth it or not.
Only you can know which apps will be beneficial to you, but with so many available, take some time at either the iTunes App Store, or Google Play Store and peruse what is available. Apps are always being added, so search frequently to make sure you have what you need.
Here are a few of the apps I’ve taken a look at and recommend.
Whether you’re a buyer or a seller, this app works in conjunction with the popular GunBroker website. Search, browse, bid, buy or sell, this app gives you access to thousands of firearms, connecting buyers and sellers. Customizable for notifications, you can make sure your auction doesn’t go off without your knowledge thanks to this app!
CCW Conceal Carry 50 States
This app can keep you up to date on the myriad of gun laws per state. The developer claims to update the laws monthly, if not more frequently. A map is provided which makes trip-planning a snap. An interactive map allows you to put in (and save) which license you have, both resident and non-resident, and a map showing which states you have reciprocity with can be saved for easy viewing. This makes traveling among states very easy, as you’ll always know where you’re allowed to carry. The interface is easy to use and intuitive, making this app very helpful.
If you’re a competitive shooter, be sure to check out Practiscore! Although it’s an app, it functions as a complete scoring system for multiple match types, including USPSA/IPSC, Steel Challenge, 3 Gun and IDPA. Many club and state matches have been scored with Practiscore as well. The cloud sync feature was recently disabled due to privacy concerns. This app claims you can score a competition solely using the app, with no paper involved at all!
According to the developer, Legal Heat is the “The only app featuring comprehensive concealed and open carry law summaries written by attorneys.” It features a state-by-state breakdown of concealed carry laws, open carry laws, as well as transport laws. Within the app is a comprehensive interactive map showing everything from state firearm laws, to reciprocity information. The apps’ developers claim updates are “instant.” From reading reviews from users, this is an excellent tool for those who travel with their firearms.
Gun Vault Pro
This inventory-tyle app can help you keep tabs on your firearms. You can enter exactly what you have, keeping your firearm inventory available to you at a glance, including serial numbers, accessories, etc. You can also store information on paintball guns, as well as your Airsoft inventory. This app also includes CCW information state-to-state, as well as an easy transfer form for selling a firearm person to person, where allowed by law. You can even keep track of your ammunition supply. This app seems like a great value for what it allows you to do! There’s also a newsfeed from the NRA so you can keep track of the latest firearm-related news!
iPhone/iPad: Not currently available
While this app is on the pricier end of the app spectrum, you do get a lot of bang for your buck! This very detailed app utilizes the JBM ballistics engine for precise, accurate calculations. Included is a rangefinder to help determine accurate distances. Extremely detailed, this app seems phenomenal for the competitive shooter. The app has a “getting started” section that includes a tutorial video to help you set up your specifics to best work for you. It’s intuitive and seems easy to program.
Android: Not currently available
Also available in the App Store, are forum-related apps. These are generally free and connect you with thousands of like-minded firearm owners. Forums are a great place to ask questions and get advise on a wide variety of issues and/or interests. No 2 firearm forums are alike. While most of the users you’ll meet there are helpful and mean well, you’ll have to deal with the occasional troll whose only there to stir the pot. I’ve met many people on various firearm-related forums, some of which I’ve met in person and will be friends with for life. That said, never take advice given in an online forum as expert advice. Use common sense and if you’re having an issue, seek out a professional for help. Many people mean well, but their advice may be not the best for your issue.
If you’re looking for fun, you can also find a ton of arcade style games that include shooting simulated pistols, rifles, shotguns and archery. Game-style firearm apps can be a great way to pass the time when you can’t get to the range, and occasionally you can learn something from them.
Although I’ve only included 6 popular apps, there are a lot more available. Searching with some of the keywords listed above can help you find a myriad of apps, which may include the perfect one for your shooting. Your cell phone is going to be with you at the range anyway, you might as well put it to work! If you have a favorite app that I didn’t include, be sure to let me know in the comments below so that I can maybe cover it in a future article! Happy shopping and happy shooting!