Genealogy Apps for iPhone

Family Tree on Your iPhone

I was the fortunate recipient of an iPhone 3GS for Christmas so what did I look for first?  Genealogy apps of course!

If you ever been researching in a library or archives and wished you had your entire family tree database with you then you will appreciate the portability of carrying it on your iPhone (or iPod Touch).

Here are the genealogy apps that I found (in no particular order).

  • Shrubs makes it possible to carry your family tree files with you at all times.  With this stand alone app you can import your entire Gedcom 5.5 file via web browser from your family tree program of choice.   From my Family Tree Maker program, I exported the Gedcom file to my hard drive, then opened up the Shrubs app on my iPhone.  It gave me an IP address which I typed into my web browser.  From there I was able to select the gedcom and upload it.  One negative is the notes feature in your family tree are not imported.  (Dick Eastman did a nice overview of this application).  View it in iTunes.
  • Mobile Family Tree 2 requires a full version of MacFamilyTree 5 or higher for MAC operating system X.  (I’m a PC user so haven’t tried this one.  It does have interesting features showing a Virtual Tree  and a Map Chart.)
  • FamViewer also allows you to upload from a web browser and view GEDCOM genealogy database files on the iPhone and the iPod Touch.  View it in iTunes.
  • Reunion requires Reunion 9.0b be installed on your mac.  It also requires that you  have a wireless connection to your mac to install it on your iPhone.
  • GedView is a viewer and recording tool compatible with iPhone/iPod devices running OS 2.2.1 or above, with additional features (such as mapping) being supported where available.  I prefer this one to Shrubs as it allows the notes to be imported with the Gedcom (unlike Shrubs). Other features allow working with very large Gedcom files,  there is support for multiple databases and GPS, Cell location or WiFi location can be used to record the current latitude/longitude when editing a place for an event or fact.  More on the benefits here.

All of these iPhone apps for genealogy can be found in your iTunes store by searching by the exact name. Only three were found in  iTunes under the search term “genealogy”.

So…the day after Christmas, and I already have two genealogy apps for viewing my family tree on my new iPhone (Shrubs and Gedview)  AND several genealogy podcasts to listen to (more on that in another post).

Please comment if you are aware of other genealogy apps for iPhone or iPod touch or if you have a comment about your experiences with these apps.

Author: © Joan Miller - Luxegen Genealogy.

The Luxegen Genealogy and Family History blog presents the family history stories of Joan Miller.