The new Weather Channel update (version 4.0.1) for Android has a much cleaner, more-elegant interface than the same app on iPhones and iPads. You get the current temperature, plus a brief description of the conditions, such as “Dry conditions will continue,” as well as what the temperature actually feels like. If you want more information, you can click a “+” button to learn the wind speed, visibility, humidity, dew point, sunrise/sunset times and high/low temperatures.
You see an orange exclamation point if there’s a weather alert for your area. The app also displays a pleasing, and relevant, photograph. If your current conditions are cloudy, for instance, you’ll see a photo with clouds.
Also new is a refresh button, so you can get the most updated weather info whenever you want it. (The iOS apps recently got the refresh feature too.) You can add various information layers to maps for dew point, wind speed, water temp, clouds, and you can see past and future radar forecasts. Any weather map these days would be remiss without the obligatory social-sharing feature, and the Weather Channel software grabs screenshots for easy posting to Facebook, Twitter, Evernote, Dropbox and other services.
The Weather Channel Android app is currently devoid of advertising—unlike the iOS apps, which sometimes show cheesy ads. I also like the Android app’s big, graphical forecast display.
There are plenty of fantastic weather apps available for all mobile platforms today. (The Weather Channel’s app is also available on BlackBerry and Windows Phone). Another such app is Weather HD 2 for iOS. But for now, The Weather Channel on Android is my favorite.
James A. Martin is a seasoned tech journalist and blogger based in San Francisco and winner of the 2014 ASBPE National Gold award for his CIO.com blog. He writes CIO.com's Living the Tech Life blog and is also a content marketing consultant.