Last updated on May 29th, 2023 at 07:05 am



HIARCS Chess is one of the best $9.99 to play game in the App Store.
Developed by Applied Computer Concepts Ltd., HIARCS Chess is a Board game with a content rating of 4+.
It was released on 28th August 2009 with the latest update 4th October 2022

Whether you are a fan of Board, Education, or Strategy games, you will find this game interesting and will absolutely like it.


151 people have rated 13.88

You can download the game HIARCS Chess from APP STORE.


HIARCS is a multiple World Championship winning chess program and the only handheld chess program in the world which has won matches and tournaments with Grandmasters. It twice won the Mercusor Cup in Buenos Aires, Argentina ahead of Grandmasters with a performance of 2900 Elo, the best chess performance rating for any handheld device in history.

In 1997 the World’s strongest ever human chess player, Garry Kasparov, said "HIARCS is much better positionally than Deep Blue" and even the current World champion, Vishy Anand, in a recent interview when asked what chess program he uses to analyse with said "generally I use HIARCS".

This power enables your iPhone to play chess like a super Grandmaster, analyse games and chess problems with you, or play at whatever weakened chess strength you want from beginner to GM strength while offering numerous features to help you learn and improve as you play with HIARCS. An advanced set of coaching features helps players of all strengths improve their chess play.

HIARCS Chess has a full range of realistic weaker opponent strengths and playing styles catering for players of all abilities from absolute beginners to Grandmasters. On the weaker playing levels HIARCS will make human-like mistakes appropriate to the level of play and this together with the integrated coach advice, assessments and alerts allow you to learn and improve quickly. HIARCS also monitors your chess performance and provides you with an Elo chess rating which tracks your chess ability in every game. It can continuously adjust its playing strength to give you challenging but beatable opponents as you improve.

HIARCS Chess will save battery life by using much less energy on the weaker levels, allowing more playing time on long journeys etc.

HIARCS Chess supports PGN chess game databases and has all the games between Fischer & Spassky and Kasparov & Karpov for you to play through and enjoy.

HIARCS has a large tournament book which is up to date with chess theory with over 235,000 variations. The book moves are displayed on screen with chess symbols and the opening variations are named and ECO coded.

Key features:

  • Strongest chess program on iPhone and iPod Touch, genuine strong GM-level performance
  • Suitable for all players from absolute beginners to strong Grandmasters with many handicap levels and opponents styles and advanced coaching
  • Intuitive and friendly user interface with multiple high quality pieces set, colour schemes and icons including high res support for iPhone 4 and 5 retina displays
  • Multiple playing modes: play white, black, both sides in two player mode, continuous analysis and interactive replay
  • Fully adjustable Elo strengths, adaptive levels and multiple playing levels and opponents
  • All levels below maximum are low energy to increase battery life
  • Rates your chess play and gives you an Elo rating which is updated after each game
  • Advanced coach can provide move options, give hints, indicate move safety and quality highlights and watch your play and warn about mistakes
  • Transfer PGN databases to/from HIARCS chess via iTunes file sharing, email games and PGN DBs from HIARCS
  • Launch HIARCS from PGN email attachments
  • Load, save or delete games to/from PGN databases
  • Set up or edit a position to analyse or play from
  • Advanced game navigation with game move slider and VCR buttons for rapid and precise game navigation
  • Many selectable preset blitz, incremental and average time clock settings for timed play
  • Large HIARCS tournament opening book as used by the professionals!
  • Permanent brain for enhanced playing strength
  • Numerous chess display functions for showing chess moves, analysis, book moves, coach advice, move quality even legal moves, offer draws or resign
  • 8 Piece sets and 9 colour schemes
  • Integrated Html manual and help screens

A discount coupon is included with a $10 USD discount on other HIARCS products on Mac and PC from www.hiarcs.com.

Updated on 4th October 2022

  • Fix to long time control issue
    + Improved coaching for white and black, shows mistakes and missed better moves
  • Improved Dark.mode support
  • Improved Millennium eBoard support
  • Coaching support on eBoards with LEDs, X for mistakes, + for missed opportunity
  • eBoard: Lift piece to ignore coach or take back move and follow advice

HIARCS Chess Reviews

We like the coaching features of this app.

Very human like play. Works great with Millennium e-boards!

We now give 5 Stars. Dark mode is much improved. Its nice to know that support DOES listen to its customers.

We love to play chess but as busy as we are it can be hard to find a solid 30+ minute block to play uninterrupted. HIARCS adapts to our level in a way no other engine ever has, and we’ve tried a bunch of them. It is just like playing a human, although it does fall into patterns that you eventually get used to. This program scratches the itch until we have time to play OTB or online with a human.

We love Hiarcs. Used it on an iPad Pro for many years, never a hitch. Now we use it on an iPhone 11, and sometimes it gets stuck thinking, and the only way to make it move is to close the app and open it again. That is the only flaw we found.

We are using this app instead of the millennium hardware, this application react as a human been during the gameexcellent, and a big plus is connecting our Millenium board with it.

We have both, the app and the MacBook version of the program. Have been using it for years. There is nothing extra to wish for a chess software, from visual aspect to chess engine. Highly recommended!

Amazing app and very human like play. Only gripe would be the tiem its been since the engine itself was updated on this app. Please:( Im begging you.

Easy and fun to use. Allows us to focus on playing not on our iPhone. Works great with our Millennium. We wish we could use it with our DGT too.

We would have giving this app 5 stars but for one thing. The white notation text on a light blue background is very difficult to see and if you set figurine notation to on you just cant see it. We contacted support and they advise to turn off dark mode. The problem is that we would have to turn off dark mode on our iPhone, there is no way of changing from dark to light mode on the app itself. We think that the problem with the white text wouldnt be a problem if the background would be black instead of light blue. We hope they fix this. Either give us the opportunity to change the app itself from dark to light mode or change the background of the text notation to black. The latter would be the simplest thing we think.

We can barely see the fonts in dark mode. With such slow release cycles, we might have to wait for another year to see change in background to show text better in dark mode.

If the UI/UX was updated to fit modern phone sizes this app would easily be 5 stars. Rated at 2 stars only because the layout looks like it was designed for older iPods and iPhones. Makes it somewhat cumbersome because it feels like everything is optimized for old displays.

This is definitely a strong engine , and it was developed for the Pocket PC and Palm platform way before it become available on iPhone . We would advise against buying this app because the customer service is terrible. We used to email Mark Uniacke about bugs and all he told us was that why has not anybody else brought this to his attention . Instead of addressing problems he denies them . The app sometimes freezes, and we cannot phantom why it is still stuck on Hiarcs 13 , when the engine itself is on version 15 . Lacks the options that were available for palm and Pocket PC like adjusting of hashsize and x moves in y minutes. Buyer beware……..

We are really learning a lot from the built-in tutor. We feel our game is getting better quicker due to this.

Very pleased with this app. We thought we had enough chess apps. (Been playing Shredder , it seems, forever. ). Only reason we purchased this was it can be used with our Millennium m820 and the link for Bluetooth . How great is that? Now that we have it we see what a terrific all around app it is. Well worth the price. It gives a battle even at the lower levels. Highly recommend.

We have both this app and the HIARCS chess for Mac. We thoroughly enjoy both. You will not be disappointed.

Exceptionally good, clear, intuitive app. Wonderful learning tool.

We’ve been using HIARCS on our PC since 2016, and its always been our favorite chess program. But, since our mobile devices were always Android, we never could play HIARCS on our smartphone or tablet. When we switched to iPhone last week, the first app we bought was HIARCS. It is fantastic! Easy to set up and use, and a joy to play (even when it soundly beats us, like it does most of the time.) we love HIARCS for iPhone!

We like the app and the engine. However its not the prettiest option available. We hope the dev are considering adding support for larger devices.

We have been using this app for many years. Best interface, very flexible and powerful engine, best customer support. Highly recommend.

We love this app above all other chess apps out there. HIARCS coaches you through the moves. Our only complaint is editing positions, you can only do it with whites perspective, you cannot flip the board to do blacks view which annoys us greatly. Wish the programmers can correct this, but other than that its worth it.

HERCS crashes consistently on iPhone 11 Pro. Had this happen with iOS 13 and now iOS 14. Besides the app crashes the gameplay is great. User interface could be improved, but is better than most mobile chess apps.

HIARCS is now our favorite app. We use an iPhone SE with iOS 12. HIARCS is beautifully intuitive to run, and it shows you its Elo rating right on the display based on the processing power of your device. We believe it actually recognizes your phones CPU power. It displays 3075 elo on our smartphone. As with most chess apps, the phone can get warm or hot but this just shows the power being used. It can be reduced by features on the app to reduce power used, or by setting the phone to low power mode, or both. Naturally this will reduce its playing strength. Very much worth the low price!

This program is great fun and a painless way to become a better player. Our only complaint was that Hiarcs should concede, and wasnt. By the time we were finished expressing frustration to our wife, and fellow player, it had conceded. It is a wonderful opponent, so much so that we gave our electronic chess player a name. Last, certainly not least, Jack is open to a game, at our playing level, anytime, anywhere. We are indebted to the developers of this delightful device. Peter L.

This program is supposed to mimic how a human player plays. Maybe we have not played enough games with it but it seems to find moves that a player at our same level should not find. It gets annoying since even at low levels, it does not mimic players well enough.

Please update to adapt bigger screen.

Does not appear to be compatible with 13.3.1. Have tried reinstalling but that does not work. Dont recommend buying until an update to fix the app is released.

We agree with one of the other reviewers that the strength might be overstated (including for humans; we won’t tell you what Hiarcs rates us but there’s no way we’re that good). However it’s a fantastic training program and a handy opponent. We like it a lot and we’ve already recommended its training features to several people.

Keep up the great work. Still the best.

Thank you for updating the app to 64 bit.

This app provides an opportunity to sharpen your skills no matter what your level of play. This chess app is a "must have". Well worth the $. This app helps you to focus, understand the correct move(s) to make & why, & learn to think/anticipate a few moves ahead. This app is awesome!!!

Hiarcs for the iPhone is a very strong and easy to use chess app that comes with no extra functions you never use and has great support from the developer… Recommended whether you are just learning or are polishing up for a tournament.

Very enjoyable chess program, human-like play.

Fantastic opening repertoire. Modern lines and impressive depth to every move. Will definitely improve your game to master level understanding. T.

We have been a long time chess player and also have been a Chess teacher. Recently we were evaluating iPhone chess apps for our six-year-old nephew. We concluded that Hiarcs is the best of the bunch. It plays very quickly, has excellent difficulty levels for beginners, and is generally well designed.

We can play chess even taking care of our baby!

We’re not going to write much as most the other reviews for older versions covered the details. The support for the 6+ is appreciated. Just wish it were easier to add the opening books.

We’re getting messages from apple that this app will not be supported in future. Whats up with that?

We probably own, easily, 2025 different chess apps. We have never paid $10 for any of them until now, and we own some really good ones. We expected this to be the cream of the crop in chess apps, but it is far from it. The app is basically OK to average but not worth $10. There is much better stuff out there for much less money (or free). Very disappointed and would not purchase again.

While using hotspot , board/menu is not displayed properly and it is not playable. Many apps handle hotspot correctly. Been that way a while now. You would expect a better for a paid app. Chess Genius does it correctly.

Come on, guys. Make it worth the money over the free apps.

This is a horrible chess app. There is no chess board notations and no list of captured pieces. The playing interface looks like something from the 90’s. All that for $9.99. We contacted the developer with no response. There are many free and paid chess apps better than this one. We’ve contacted Apple for a refund.

Hiarcs is very weak vs stockfish app, the opening book is terrible and the price (10$) is terrible. Maybe 5 years ago this was worth 10$ but now its just a scam.

So good, continually makes us better. Really improved our game. Started with it on palm at about 1100 ELO years ago and through the versions and years we’re playing at about 2100!

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