11 Best Beekeeping Android and iOS Apps (for Beekeepers Of All Levels)
From monitoring hive health, bee queen detection to tracking honey harvests, these beekeeping apps revolutionize bee management with just a few taps from your smartphone (or tablet). There’s even an award-winning app that identifies varroa mites in a matter of seconds!
So, put away your pen and paper and ready your phones because these beekeeping apps are game-changers for expert and beginner apiarists alike.
- Top 11 Beekeeping Apps for Android And iOS Devices
- Choosing The Best Beekeeping Apps For Your Needs
Top 11 Beekeeping Apps for Android And iOS Devices
We found the top 11 beekeeper apps based on user-friendliness, features, and of course, cost. Here’s an overview of what we found.
|BeePlus Beekeeping Manager Hive Tool||
|Apiarist Beekeeper Assistant||
|Beekeeping and Hive Tracking Plus||
Still undecided on which app is best for you? You can learn more by reading our in-depth review below.
If you are looking for an easy-to-use app that does it all, Hivebloom easily takes the top spot for the best beekeeping apps.
Don’t worry if you aren’t the most tech-savvy beekeeper out there. The intuitive interface allows you to upload as many hives as you like. You can add a photo and pin the GPS coordinates. This mobile app also utilizes QR codes for a quicker way to identify your hives.
Track your inspections and other beekeeping activities, and they upload automatically to the cloud. But don’t worry if your apiary is at a remote location. The app works offline and will upload when you get back to civilization.
People also rave about the excellent app support and maintenance! And the best part? This best beekeeping app works whether you are an Apple or Android product user.
A no-frills management app, HiveSmart HQ is available to download for either Android or iOS devices. HIveSmart HQ allows you to fully customize the information you record about your beehives – from the installation of the hive to harvesting and selling the honey and everything in between.
You don’t need to log in, and the app runs without ads. It even works offline – which is perfect for those remote apiaries.
And there is no subscription fee. Instead, you purchase service credits. When you download the free app, you get 100 service credits available for “inspections.” The first time you inspect a hive, it is free.
Every time after that, it costs one service credit. You can purchase 30, 60, or 100 service credits at a time. Plus, you can transfer beehive reports to another device, making HiveSmart our Budget Pick.
Whether you’re large enough to QR code all your colonies or just getting started beekeeping, the BeePlus Beekeeping Manager Hive Tool will help you streamline your beekeeping activities for your entire colony. The downside? It is only available for iOS devices.
So, how does this app work?
Start by creating your apiary. Then add the details of your hives. If you know how to attract bees to a hive, you can use the app to track your captured swarms.
You can quickly record the information from your hive inspections or add detailed notes and photos about each hive. Then seamlessly sync the data among your iOS devices.
Whether you run a commercial apiary or own some backyard hives, this iOS beekeeping app comes with inventory and financial tracking, so you can monitor honey production and never have to put up with excel sheets ever again.
Determining the best time to conduct a hive inspection can be a hit or miss, especially if you are a beginner beekeeper. Don’t worry. InspectNext is here to save you.
Like a high-tech weather forecaster, this beekeeping app monitors the weather and gives you the ideal time to conduct a colony inspection. You just have to set the optimum condition, select the hive location, and the app does the rest.
We’re not kidding. It will show you what the weather will be like for next week. Then it will tell if a time slot is optimal, viable, or inadvisable to inspect your bees based on the conditions you set.
Another great option if you are running an iOS device is the Apiarist Beekeeper Assistant. While the interface isn’t quite as slick as BeePlus or HiveBloom, this app deserves a spot in our best beekeeping apps review because it offers a wide range of tracking features to maintain several bee colonies.
You can create an unlimited number of apiaries and beehives, add all your inspections and track your financial data. The data is all stored on your device rather than on the cloud, making it inconvenient if you want to share information between different devices.
While the Apiarist may not be the smoothest app out there, it is a solid choice, and you can’t beat the price. It’s free!
If you are rearing queens, the Queen Calendar is here to make life easier for you. It’s one of the free beekeeping Android apps that creates a calendar of all the required activities to raise a queen successfully.
You add the start date for the withdrawal of your queen, and the app does the rest. Now you’ll know exactly when to expect each stage in the development and get a convenient reminder.
Now keep in mind this is a calendar app, not an informational app. If you don’t know how to rear a queen or want to know more about queen information, this app won’t help you. You can download a different app. We recommend the American Bee Journal or the Beekeeping Demystified This.
Another Android-only app is Beekeeping and Hive Tracking Plus. They take into account the difficulty of keeping notes in the field. So, they’ve made note-taking as easy as a touch of a button.
Few areas require any typing and this beehive app offers speech-to-text recognition, so all you need to do is say your observations aloud, and the app will record them.
The main screen will keep you apprised of any hives that need special care and attention. And if you are uncertain of what to do next or have questions like, “What’s the best beekeeping starter kit?” You can use the app to reach out to a network of veteran beekeepers through the messaging functions.
“Varroa mites, Varroa destructor Anderson and Truemann, are the single most devastating global pests of both adult and immature honey bees, Apis mellifera L.”
As a conscientious beekeeper, you are probably already testing your hive at least once a month for varroa mites (2). But now, you can rely on BeeScanning’s high-tech AI to identify a varroa mite infestation.
This innovative, award-winning app is an easy way for you to monitor the health of your bees.
You simply take four photos of a brood frame with bees on it and upload them in the app. An AI will then examine the images and return the results to you, telling you if there are varroa mites.
The message responses range from the best “0% Great!” to the worst “5% There is Danger!” and advise you on how to proceed. BeeScanning will work even if your hives are out of cell range. Just upload your photos from the app next time you get online.
This beekeeping tool app also has a bee queen detector feature. If you want to know more about bee diseases, download the Bee Health App.
The Apiary Book is the priciest app on our list. If you have less than ten hives, you can use their free basic version, but you only get limited features.
With the Premium version, not only do you get hands-free voice recording and cloud storage, but you also get access to a web app for more detailed data analysis and graphs of unlimited hives and apiaries.
You also have access to beekeeping tools like a queen calendar and sugar syrup calculator. In addition to that, you join a whole beekeeping community, where you can share knowledge or find a mentor.
Apiary Book may be worth the cost if you are looking for a top-of-the-line app with many features.
Another costly app is HiveKeepers for Beekeepers. But, you can try the 30-day free trial.
This robust apiary management tool allows you to track an unlimited number of hives. Thanks to its easy-to-use interface, you can input data on the apiary, hive, box, or frame level and then quickly upload photos for visual reference.
Available on both iOS and Android platforms, HiveKeepers for Beekeepers also offers an online-based portal that makes it easier to view the data collected in the field. You can get a general overview by looking at the dashboard or dive deep into detailed graphs and reports.
Available in PlayStore and App Store, this beekeeping app is free to download. However, you’ll need to have a subscription to access more functions.
Don’t worry. You can still enjoy its intuitive and user-friendly system to monitor your hives daily or weekly. There’s also an option to edit your hive components and log hive inspections, as well as treatments and feeding.
A new update is set to release in June. If you want to be the first to use it, make sure to head to their website and sign-up.
Choosing The Best Beekeeping Apps For Your Needs
Whether you want a beekeeping management app or an app to help you monitor optimal bee inspection weather, we’ve identified certain vital features you will want to look for in bee keeper apps.
When choosing an app, user-friendliness consistently ranks high up on the list. It doesn’t matter how much information you can store about your beehive if you can’t figure out how to input the data.
Choose beekeeping apps that make beekeeping management easier and not harder.
For instance, Beekeeping and Hive Tracking Plus give particular consideration to the challenges beekeepers face when inputting data while wearing gloves and a bee suit.
They limit typing by offering checklists and speech-to-text options.
Also, take into consideration what kind of device you will be using. The larger screen size of tablets allows you to see more information. But don’t be surprised if an app won’t display correctly on a tablet. Most app developers only optimize for phone use.
When deciding which app to download, you should consider which features are most important to you.
Most beehive management apps will have similar features that include tracking your hives, inspections, finances, and harvests. But some go above and beyond the others.
An app like Apiary Book is jam-packed with features that standard beehive management tools don’t have. Their queen tracker and the ability to connect with other beekeepers really make their app stand out. But it comes at a price.
Free Vs. Paid
When it comes to free vs. paid, you often get what you pay for. Many free apps have limited functionality, clunky interfaces, or are full of advertising. Whether you make a one-time purchase or pay a subscription fee, paid apps usually are of higher quality and offer additional support.
Remember, no apps are genuinely free. If the customer isn’t paying, the developer is usually earning from ad revenue (3).
There are, of course, exceptions. One fantastic app on our list that is free is BeeScanning. While they have plans to add a subscription service that will identify other bee health problems, the varroa mite identification will remain free.
To learn more about the dangers of varroa mites, check out this video:
Developer Support And Updates
Developer support and updates probably aren’t the first things you consider when downloading an app, but they should make it on your list, especially if you pay a subscription fee.
Some developers simply release an app and never think about it again. If something doesn’t work, you are stuck with it.
Always look for beekeeping apps that offer support or at least release updates to address app issues.
You can see how frequently they update their app by checking out what version number it is. A good developer will also be available to answer any questions you may have.
As mentioned, HiveBloom has outstanding developer support. They are responsive to customer problems and quick to release updates that resolve those issues, which is how it should be.
Data Security, Storage, and Sharing
Some apps will store data on your device, while others will upload it to the cloud. There are pros and cons to each method. Despite what you think, data stored on the cloud is more secure than data stored on your device (4).
“The security measures undertaken by larger companies providing cloud services are likely to be more robust and powerful than what you have protecting your home computer and devices.”
Not only is your data secure when you store it in the cloud, but it also easier to recover in case your device was damaged or lost (5). You can simply download all the stored data to your new device, and nothing is lost. However, if something is stored natively on your device and it breaks, that data is gone forever.
Using the cloud also makes it easier to share data amongst your devices and with other beekeepers.
However, the cloud is not without its disadvantages as well. Many cloud-based apps won’t work if they aren’t connected to the internet (6). Others will allow you to save the data and upload it when you are online. It is crucial if you have remote hives.
Yes, some apps like BeeScanning can detect the queen. First, you take a photo of your frames. Then you upload the image. After the picture is analyzed, BeeScanning will deliver your results. Not only do they show you varroa mite, but they also identify the queen if she is present in the frame.
Unfortunately, by the time the results are delivered, the queen will have moved on. But studying the photos can help you get better at identifying the queen yourself.
Yes, an app will help you if you have just one hive. Even if you aren’t looking into an apiary management app, other beekeeping apps can help you. InspectNext is geared towards ideal bee inspection weather, while others like BeeScanning can provide hive health information.
And while you may find that you have only one hive now, you may expand your colonies in the future. An apiary management app can help you manage your growth easier.
Apiary Book is the best app for a beginner beekeeper. You can begin with the free basic version to make sure the interface will work for you. The premium version offers many valuable tools like the sugar syrup calculator.
You also have access to a community of veteran beekeepers you can consult. You can even use the app to help you find a mentor while you are getting started.
- Diagnosis of Varroa Mite (Varroa destructor) and Sustainable Control in Honey Bee (Apis mellifera) Colonies—A Review. Retrieved from: https://www.mdpi.com/1424-2818/11/12/243/htm
- Varroa Mite Monitoring. Retrieved from: https://pollinators.msu.edu/resources/beekeepers/varroa-mite-monitoring1/
- Do You Get What You Pay For? Comparing the Privacy Behaviors of Paid vs Free Apps. Retrieved from: https://www.ftc.gov/system/files/documents/public_events/1415032/privacycon2019_catherine_han.pdf
- Cloud Security: How Secure is Cloud Data. Retrieved from: https://us.norton.com/internetsecurity-privacy-cloud-data-security.html
- Pros and Cons of Cloud Storage: Is Cloud Storage right for your data. Retrieved from: https://www.businesstechweekly.com/operational-efficiency/cloud-computing/pros-and-cons-of-cloud-storage/
- What is cloud computing. Retrieved from: https://www.zdnet.com/article/what-is-cloud-computing-everything-you-need-to-know-about-the-cloud/
Rachael and her husband arrived on Isla de Ometepe, Nicaragua in 2011. There they founded El Jardin de la Vida, a tropical micro food forest, focusing on Sustainable Living Education. She teaches others to build with natural materials, live off-grid, and appreciate slow food.