With the weather so unpredictable, it’s the perfect time of year to download a reliable weather app. But don’t spend hours researching your options; we’ve already done it for you!
Read on for the inside scoop on the best weather apps on the market.
AccuWeather (iOS, Android)
AccuWeather is high up on our list for its sheer simplicity. The free app has a clean interface and will give you hourly, daily and 15-day weather forecasts, which you can easily integrate into your calendar.
Despite its simplicity, AccuWeather is super-comprehensive. You’ll get more than just the temperature and rain forecast on this app; if it’s weather-related, you’ll find it here. Download AccuWeather and you’ll have access to the exact times of sunrise and sunset, allergy and asthma forecasts, plus newscasts and videos about the trending weather cycle. Want to add to the app’s database? Send in your own weather reports and videos and you may be featured in AccuWeather’s news reports.
If you hate surprises, you’ll love MinuteCast. This feature brings you minute-by-minute weather forecast for the next 2 hours so you’ll know exactly when the rain is going to start falling in your neighborhood. The app also provides hourly forecasts for up to 3 days and an extended weather forecast for an incredible 90 days.
AccuWeather has a tremendous reach, with weather forecasts for more than 3 million locations across the globe.
Like most apps, you have the option of upgrading to a paid plan for a clutter-free view, but the free version is everything you’d expect from a weather app and more.
AccuWeather’s detailed maps are easily its best feature. You’ll get a visual feel for the current and upcoming weather patterns and you can move along the map with a handy slider.
Another great feature on the app is its weather alerts. AccuWeather will notify its users about any imminent weather events like snowstorms, thunderstorms, tornadoes, hurricanes and high winds.
Some users find the app’s 3-day hourly forecast to be lacking when compared to the more extended hourly forecasts other apps provide. Critics also claim the advanced weather forecasts aren’t accurate enough to truly be relied upon.
Dark Sky (iOS, Android)
Dark Sky is for people who are serious about getting accurate weather forecasts. You’ll have access to detailed daily, hourly and by-the-minute forecasts, all within an elegant design.
Dark Sky shines in its accuracy. The app gives you a precipitation map and graph along with a lock screen option that can sync with your AppleWatch so you’ll know the weather even when your phone is stowed away. Dark Sky will also alert you before it starts raining or snowing so you’re never caught unprepared.
Dark Sky gives you minute-by-minute forecasts an hour in advance and hourly forecasts for the next 7 days.
Subscribers are crazy over Dark Sky’s graphics. They’re smooth and sophisticated and the elegant weather maps put Dark Sky a cut above other weather apps. The app also outperforms other weather apps with its 7-day hourly forecasts.
Dark Sky is an amazing weather app – but it’s not free unless you have an Android device. Apple users will need to cough up $3.99 for an app that’s not enough of an improvement over free apps to be worth the price. Also, Android users complain that the free version lacks many of the app’s best features, like notifications and minute-by-minute forecasts.
The Weather Channel (iOS, Android)
We can’t list the best weather apps without including the weather forecast source that’s been around for more than three decades!
The Weather Channel app brings you 15-day forecasts that are updated each hour for optimal accuracy. The app changes based on your location and can give you an hourly forecast for 2 days.
You can check out a storm’s path on the app, and get safety alerts and allergy stats,as well as information on other health risks. Use the app to access exclusive web content and videos featured on the Weather Channel’s TV broadcasts.
The app is free with all its features, and an ad-free version is available for $3.99/year.
If you’re an outdoor enthusiast, you’ll love the Weather Channel. The app is helpful by letting you know if the weather is right for seasonal outdoor activities and includes information on weather factors like wind-chill, lightning strikes and more.
Subscribers who are into aesthetics aren’t crazy about the Weather Channel’s overly simplistic design.