Gone are the days when weather forecasting was little more than fortune-telling. With Doppler radar, satellite imaging and numerous advances in meteorology, weather forecasts are more reliable than ever so there's no excuse to be caught unprepared by sudden downpours or snow flurries, as long as you've got a smartphone. Check out 15 of the best weather apps for Android and iOS devices. (Photo Credit: AnastasiiaS/Shutterstock)
Weather can change in an instant, so it's handy to be alerted when something severe is headed your way. Apalon's NOAA Radar Pro for iOS promises real-time animated radar images on an interactive app map, along with the kind of detailed weather information you'd expect from a mobile app. But a noteworthy feature is the app's ability to send notifications whenever a weather alert is issued, so that you're never caught unaware by snow storms, flood warnings or other dangerous conditions. The iOS version includes Apple Watch compatibility, so those alerts are delivered to your wrist. Android users can download the free NOAA Weather Radar & Alerts, with a $1.99 in-app purchase removing ads.
The beautiful Yahoo Weather (Android, iOS) app boasts a gorgeous interface that is both informative and striking. The app displays images of your location with matching time of day and weather conditions, with the option to view detailed five-day forecasts, as well as interactive radar, heat and satellite maps. Updates have brought the Android app in line with the iOS design for a unified experience across both platforms. Other apps provide more details and features, but Yahoo Weather's clean, concise presentation makes it an eminently user-friendly, everyday app, marred only by a fairly large advertisement as you swipe up to get to the detailed forecast.
Weather Timeline delivers a no-nonsense, ad-free weather forecasts to your Android device through a highly configurable display. You'll get extreme weather alerts from your choice of a variety of data sources. Users can save a variety of locations and view detailed daily forecasts, with temperature highs and lows, precipitation forecasts, with the option to drill down to detailed hourly forecasts. On a smartphone, the app has a clean timeline presentation of the weather, while landscape mode on tablet puts a variety of graphs side by side with the timeline.
YoWindow is an Android weather app that offers rich animations and is easy to use. It displays a weather forecast with an animated landscape view of expected weather outside. Users can swipe left to right to view hourly or daily forecasts, with the animation changing to match the forecast. The app displays a lot of information at a glance, from precipitation to temperature, pressure, humidity and wind speed. Users can choose from a variety of landscapes and can set the view as a live wallpaper.
Arcus Weather takes data from Forecast.io, the weather service built by the Dark Sky team, to bring detailed weather forecasting wherever you are. It includes widgets and a Dashclock extension, weather reports in your notification tray, severe weather alerts and support for Android Wear. Users can check out US radar maps and set the app to vibrate your phone for precipitation alerts. An in-app purchase unlocks more custom locations and widget interval options, while removing ads.
Why not give your daily forecast a unique look? Wild Weather (Android, iOS) pairs up the temperature with a hand-drawn illustration of wildlife that gives you an at-a-glance look at weather conditions. For more details, just swipe up and you'll see a more detailed forecast of the next 24 hours, plus the five-day outlook. The illustrations change depending on the time of day, so you may find yourself checking out the weather more frequently just to see what kind of drawing awaits you.
AccuWeather (Android, iOS) is an excellent app that provides hourly, daily and 15-day weather forecasts, which you can integrate with your calendar. The MinuteCast feature even provides hyper-local, minute-by-minute forecasts for the next two hours. AccuWeather's reach is comprehensive, with forecast data for more than 3 million locations. The app also includes alerts for incoming severe weather events such as snow, thunderstorms, high winds or tornadoes.