Why Apple’s Weather app for iOS sucks

“A video on Macworld today reminded me how bad Apple’s Weather app for iOS is. Serenity Caldwell shows how to use this app, but neglects to point out that it’s one of the hardest weather apps to view,” Kirk McElhearn writes for Kirkville.

“I don’t know why Apple chose to use such low-contrast colors in this app, but it’s extremely hard to see if your vision isn’t sharp, especially outdoors, which is one place where you might want to check the weather,” McElhearn writes. “The fonts are smaller, and there’s lots of wasted space.”

McElhearn writes, “Since Apple’s app uses Yahoo!’s forecasts, it’s much easier for me to use the Yahoo! app, and this may be the case for lots of people.”

See the screenshots in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Which weather app is the best app for iPhone? iPad users, is that the best weather app for iPad, too, or do you have another choice for weather on iPad?

59 Comments

    1. Yep, me too. I just wish they offered the ad-free version for iPad. I run the iPhone version on my iPad because I don’t want to deal with two different versions.

      ——RM

  1. All will change according to the WWDC keynote. The weather app is changing over to the Weather Channel, which also provides the data to Yahoo. Also my understanding is they are updating the app. So given this is public knowledge, why isn’t anyone talking about iOS8?

    1. You’re absolutely right, the Weather is … fine. And since when is Apple about “fine” and not extraordinary?

      I don’t need an app for just a forecast, it would be nice if it would incorporate a radar, and minute-casting to let you know when bad weather is approaching. But I suppose it doesn’t really need to include that as I can get all of that from the AccuWeather APP – which I own and use 100x more often the the Weather APP included in iOS (that I can’t remove).

    2. The people who are “hating” on the iOS weather app are doing so because they can’t see it. The UI looks like it went through the wash too many times.

      Notice that until iOS7, Apple’s UIs were never controversial. There were a few people here and there who didn’t like this detail or that, but this is the first time there has been an uproar. It’s lucky for Apple that Jony Ive wasn’t designing the Mac’s user interface in the 1990s.

      No matter how wonderful or modern the UI is, if it is controversial with the general public, it doesn’t serve Apple’s interests.

      1. Exactly.
        Try reading the second screen of info when the day is cloudy. You can’t. White letters on white clouds. Some dumb ass released this and thought it was great.

      2. Not only is it controversial with the general public, it is a major selling point in a T-Mobile and Verizon store I visited recently to evaluate upgrade options. The sales manager openly mocked the crayon thin and colored kiddie icons look to me in front of other customers. Then he pulled out a big ass druid phablet and showed me non-Apple forums where it is routinely denigrated.

        The whole world KNOWS it sucks!

        But the minority of Apple philistine gatekeepers refuse to relent their historic mistake. And the Apple trolls, well, we all know the Beat they follow …

    3. It really isn’t fine and something that generates interest isn’t click bait.

      The iOS weather app the most basic, information-free weather app available and it hasn’t changed since iOS was iPhone OS. Some of us want radar information, some want severe weather alerts, I personally want to hear about lightning in my area. A discussion like this gives me new apps to investigate.

  2. The weather app looks great to me. I love the movement, the lightening, the aesthetics. This article is nitpicking at its worst. Maybe the author should focus on more productive endeavors, like staring at a wall.

  3. The weather forecasting itself totally sucks. But that’s not something Apple has any control over. But btw, climatologists are certain we’re all doomed in a few years. Because gaseous plant food, that’s why.

            1. You need to remove that pole firmly stuck up where the sun don’t shine. I was joking (you actually couldn’t tell?). You must be a million laughs at a party. The male version of “Debbie Downer.” Christopher Calamity.

      1. The main problem planet warming (which has stopped/stalled) is responsible for is bunching up panties 😉 But in all seriousness, if half the energy going into climate change bs was put into fixing actual environmental problems (habitat destruction, pollution, invasive species…) we’d be a lot better off, and ironically, so would CO2 levels.

    1. You mean the TV channel that is supposed to be about weather that was running a reality TV show during a major Tornado outbreak? The non-weather Weather Channel?

      Surely you jest. It used to be about the weather like Headline News used to be about News. Tune in at anytime and get a quick wrap of everything.

      They got greedy and went lowbrow with Sarah Palin’s Ice Road Duck Dynasty Truckers Real World.

      1. Palin and Duck Dynasty lowbrow? Can you say ratings? Well, if I could offer comfort and steer you to a place you would feel better, sorry, Air America went off the air years ago. Cuddle up MSNBC and you will feel better.

  4. I’m a bit of a weather nerd, and have used Forecast.io-supported apps, such as Dark Sky, and Weather Underground. I want to use Apple default apps, but the iOS-provided app is so limiting as to be frustrating. There is no detail provided for the next day, other than an icon and temps. Okay, it shows rain. How much? When? % of chance of rain? Ugh.

    The Wirecutter actually did a good roundup of weather apps, and recommends Yahoo! Weather for most people. It’s worth a read.

    http://thewirecutter.com/reviews/best-weather-app-for-ios/

    Yahoo seems to have problems with the app and push. They used to have severe weather alerts, which never worked for me, and pulled it. Now they do the daily forecast, but it’s been unreliable for me. So I use Weather Underground for reliable weather alerts, and Yahoo for every day. Only thing I’ve seen in screenshots on iOS 8 weather is the narrative forecasts, which I like.

    1. I use two: Dark Sky because it’s very locally oriented yet can show overall global temperatures and My-Cast. My-Cast doesn’t seem to be supported any more (never updated for the 4″ screen) but it does provide more information than any weather app i’ve seen. There’s even a subscription lightning alert option.

      Those two serve all my weather needs.

      1. I used Dark Sky for a while…but there have been tons of user complaints of always-on GPS use, which drains the battery quickly. I emailed the team directly and was told Apple doesn’t provide for a way to show the outline of the location services icon for minor location change updates, and they emphasized it doesn’t use GPS in the background, only when it’s running front and center.

        How have you found the battery to behave on your phone when Dark Sky is running? I’ve found battery drain to increase.

        1. I rarely run it front and center and rely on its notifications so the battery hit isn’t noticeable. For local weather conditions, radar, lightning strikes, temperatures, winds and such, My-Cast is my go to app.

  5. I’m a bit of a weather nerd, and have used Forecast.io-supported apps, such as Dark Sky, and Weather Underground. I want to use Apple default apps, but the iOS-provided app is so limiting as to be frustrating. There is no detail provided for the next day, other than an icon and temps. Okay, it shows rain. How much? When? % of chance of rain? Ugh.

    The Wirecutter actually did a good roundup of weather apps, and recommends Yahoo! Weather for most people. It’s worth a read.

    http://thewirecutter.com/reviews/best-weather-app-for-ios/

    Yahoo seems to have problems with the app and push. They used to have severe weather alerts, which never worked for me, and pulled it. Now they do the daily forecast, but it’s been unreliable for me. So I use Weather Underground for reliable weather alerts, and Yahoo for every day. Only thing I’ve seen in screenshots on iOS 8 weather is the narrative forecasts, which I like.

  6. Yahoo weather is pretty fantastic, thought the radar map loads slow. Wx channel’s got a better map. Clear Day integrates well across my Macs, iPhone, and iPad. Hurricane Tracker’s a very good, specific app.

  7. I have been using Accuweather.

    As for contrast. Bright day—bright —less contrast. Vice-versa for night time. Not much different than all the other weather apps. Certainly not enough for anyone to declare that Apple’s app “sucks.”

    In any event, I would like to thank McElhearn for bringing it to my attention. After today, I have gone back to Apple’s weather app. A lot simpler. And as much info as I really want to digest most of the time.

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