March 12, 2009
The weather apps available for your iphone vary as much as… um… the weather? I guess? Some have a lot of features and will come in handy. Others, not so much. I’m comparing six apps, AccuWeather, Weatherbug, Weather Channel, WeatherEye, WeatherNow and Fizz Weather… and for kicks I’m including the Weather app that comes pre-installed on your phone. You know the one… you can’t get rid of it. (Yeah, that one.) Enjoy. Or don’t. See if I care.
OverviewThis is about as stripped down weather app as you can possibly get. Six day forecast and the current temperature, via Yahoo weather. It’s pre-installed and you can’t delete it from your phone. So learn to deal with it, man.
Bottom LineSince it comes included with your phone, you’ll have this app no matter what. Even if you hate it, you can’t get rid of it. It’s just there. (This is assuming that you’re not all smart and rebellious and jailbreak your phone.) It lacks a lot of the fun, detailed features that the other apps… uh… feature. Yes. If you’re looking for an hourly breakdown- you better look elsewhere, cause it ain’t here, my friend.
Verdict: Does It Really Matter? You’re Stuck With It.AccuWeather.com v1.02 | Published by AccuWeather, Inc. | Via App Store | FREE | Released: 12-12-08
OverviewAccuWeather doesn’t mess around with the features. Current conditions, next five hour breakdown, five day forecast, air quality and UV index levels, radar, maps alerts and video. It’s like an overload after having only used the boring weather app that’s pre-installed. It’s all very exciting. I mean... there's videos! You can watch weather videos! (I'd find out later that there are a few apps that include video).
Bottom LineThis is a swell little weather app. It has a lot of good features and they’re easy to understand. I’m not a fan of the ad banner at the top, but it’s not a deal breaker. The videos are a nice touch and I like the risk page that lists the potential severe weather over the next 8 hours. (Unfortunately, they’re always low here in LA. Aww.) Considering that this is a free app, you could do a lot worse… (see the following review for an example of “worse.”)
Verdict: The Sun Is Shining On This AppWeatherBug v1.1.1 | Published by WeatherBug | Via App Store | FREE | Released: 07-06-08
OverviewOkay, this app features a three day forecast, (including today), radar/satellite maps, weather cameras, and a video forecast. The forecast is pretty detailed. It includes the wind speed, wind chill, humidity and dew point. Oh yeah, it also features the temperature. Which is good, because 9 times out of 10, you’re probably most interested in the temperature. And it’s got it!
Bottom LineThis app is merely okay. It lacks an extended forecast, and an hourly breakdown that the others feature. And, from a merely aesthetic standpoint, it’s just not that exciting. It’s kind of bland. And I know how much excitement counts when you’re checking the weather.
Verdict: Cloudy, With A Chance Of RainThe Weather Channel v1.0.1 | Published by The Weather Channel Interactive, Inc. | Via App Store | FREE | Released: 11-04-08
OverviewThis is an app made by The Weather Channel… let me repeat that… an app made by The Weather Channel. They’re the weather experts. I mean, they have their own channel on cable, (which they use to perpetuate the global warming hoax.) So this app should be pretty good right? It features current weather conditions, hourly breakdowns, 36 hour breakdown, 10 day forecast, video, severe weather alerts and an interactive map of the area where you can view the radar, cloud level, temperature and rainfall. Phew! And it’s all free!
Bottom LineIt’s got everything you could possibly need, minus snow reports, and it’s free. Since it’s free, you can download it and try it for yourself it you don’t want to take my word for it. And if you don’t want to take my word for it, then you have trust issues, because I’m about as honest a person as they come. (Although, I know there’s a difference between being honest and stating an opinion… I mean this is purely subjective. You might hate this app for some reason. That doesn’t mean that you’re right or wrong, since it’s all just an opinion we’re talking about here.)
Verdict: The Sun Is Shining On This AppWeatherEye v2.0.10 | Published by Pelmorex Media Inc. | Via App Store | FREE | Released: 10-21-08
OverviewThis app features a five day forecast and an evening/next day forecast. Um… it also features current conditions. It has a place where the sunrise and sunset would be, but it says N/A in those places. Which is lame, because Los Angeles is a big city. That’s about it as far as features go.
Bottom LineOkay, this is dumb. Out of all of the apps, this is the only one that couldn’t locate my current position. I couldn’t locate Burbank. Burbank. A suburb of Los Angeles. A major city in the valley… It can’t find Burbank?! I’m sorry, but what? Burbank is a real city! Why can’t you locate it?! Besides that, it’s missing a lot of features that the others had… like an hourly breakdown of conditions, rader, maps, etc. And I found that on the extended forecasts, most of the details came up as N/A. And that pretty much defeats the purpose of having an extended forecast.
Verdict: Rainy Days & Mondays (And This App) Always Get Me DownWeatherNow v3.2 | Published by AlbeBaubles | Via App Store | $2.99 | Released: 01-23-09
OverviewWeatherNow offers a five day forecast featuring the highs and lows for those days and the current temperature. It includes sunrise and set too. The time and date are stamped right there… much larger than the actual temperature for some reason. If you turn your phone sideways, you get the temperature displayed over a pretty picture. That’s all the features though. And yes, they do charge you for this app…
Bottom LineWow. This one is pretty worthless. It’s neat(?) that it has the time and date and location on it… but… the time is an hour ahead of what we in Burbank like to call “real” time. (After the daylight savings time, it was 8 hours off, but as of right now, the clock is accurate.) It sucks that you can’t store locations- so you’re forced to enter your zip code or shake the phone for the current location. Lame! The forecasts aren’t detailed and there are no maps or radar… it’s very disappointing and not worth the price they’re charging. Even if it were free, I wouldn’t recommend it. Sorry.
Verdict: Rainy Days & Mondays (And This App) Always Get Me DownFizz Weather v1.02 | Published by Fizz Software Ltd. | Via App Store | $5.99 | Released: 02-04-09
OverviewFizz Weather has a two day and five day forecast for over 58,000 cities around the world. It features wind speed, sunset and sunrise times, radar maps and loops and airport information. If you rotate your phone you can get forecast charts for temperature, precipitation, rainfall, humidity and wind. And what kind of a weather app would be complete without weather alerts? Seriously, would it be complete without that? I don’t think so.
Bottom LineThis app is good. It looks nice and more importantly, it’s accurate. Lots of detailed weather info. The problem is, you can get all of that info for free from the other apps, like The Weather Channel one. I’m not sure how they can justify charging that much money for this app. But it’s their prerogative, so… whatever. If it were cheaper, or free, this would probably be my most favoritest…. actually, my second most favoritest, because it doesn’t include a 10 day forecast. And when it comes to weather, I need to know 10 days in advance. Because of the price, I'm forced to lower my opinion...
Verdict: Cloudy, With A Chance Of Rain
The Final WordSince I know by now you’re probably pretty freakin’ tired reading about the weather, because the weather is soooo boring… so I’ll make this short and sweet. Both AccuWeather and The Weather Channel apps are well worth the cost… which is zero, because they’re free. Fizz Weather would be great- if it weren’t six dollars. I’m sorry, but there are some things in life you just don’t pay for: The weather forecast is one of those things. (And if you don’t agree, so what? It’s a free app!)
The WinnerThe Weather Channel | FREE | Must Have
Earth Networks, Inc.
Fizz Software Ltd.
WeatherNow (with Clock)
The Weather Network / MeteoMedia
The Weather Channel®
The Weather Channel Interactive
AccuWeather for iPhone