Regardless of the season, knowing the weather forecast is essential to making sure you don’t head outside in shorts when it’s drizzling out, or when it’s Sahara-like in the shade and you’ve forgotten to dress light and breezy. Thankfully, there are many great and very attractive weather apps that you can keep on your Android device so you’ll never be left out in the rain again. In this article, we'll discuss some of the best Android weather apps and widgets for every taste!
1. The Weather Channel: best for world weather news
The Weather Channel is the go-to weather app for many Android users with up-to-date and accurate weather information. It includes hourly, 36-hour and 10-day forecast options, as well as the usual gamut of weather conditions like wind speed, humidity, UV index, visibility, dew point, and pressure. It has a really slick interface, featuring a weather related videos section with clips from around the world. It’s simple to use and intuitive, though it doesn’t feature all of the necessary info on a single page like some other apps do.
2. Weather Underground: best for getting involved
The self-proclaimed “world’s most accurate hyper-local weather forecasts”, Weather Underground employs the combined services of over 33,000 weather stations to offer localized reports from a widespread weather community. This is said to produce a more personalized experience, tailored to your real-time location; users can even give updates on how the weather is in their area, rather relying on what other sources are reporting the weather. The interface is highly detailed and shows everything you could ask for on one convenient and useful page.
3. Arcus Weather: best at a glance
The Arcus Weather app has a no-frills approach to its interface, which is mostly a dull and grey across its “now”, “hourly” and “daily” pages, but it is very accessible. Arcus features widgets, and weather updates which can be accessed from the notification bar, all supported by a weather algorithm which aggregates a number of sources to provide the most accurate information possible. Arcus weather’s descriptions are nice and detailed, with statements like “light rain through the week, with temperatures falling to 50 degree fahrenheit on Friday,” making it very useful for providing a quick overview.
4. 1Weather: best widgets and animations
1Weather is one of the best free weather apps for Android, not only because of the immense amount of weather information it is able to share (weather, temperature, wind speed, UV index etc), but also because of its awesome graphics, design and setup. You’ve really got it all: real-time and regularly updated weather forecasts for your home base, but also anywhere in the world. In addition, you'll get precipitation info, animated sunrise and sunsets, and a 10-day weather forecast, which is quite accurate. On the design side, 1Weather has live weather backgrounds and live animated radars for severe weather, and gives you the option of creating your own background. There are many home screen widgets, which consist of the regular square format as well as three clock formats.
5. WeatherBug: best for extra features
WeatherBug also excels in the design and user interface departement, plus it is able to pin-point the weather forecast not only to your city but to your actual neighbourhood. In addition to forecasts and severe weather warnings, the developers have also incorporated a traffic camera section to avoid jams and the possibility to share photos and albums. You can customize it to your lifestyle, to know, for example, if you can run to the gym on a specific day, as well as personalize your home screen, language, and save multiple locations.
6. Yahoo Weather: best for ease of use
Yahoo Weather, a free app for Android, offers a complete package full of all the weather information that you need, and has a user interface with appealing graphics. Though it holds a lot of information, the app never seems cluttered, and the constantly changing backgrounds from Flickr are really refreshing. There are many sizes and kinds of widgets for your home screen, plus you’ll often get notifications in your status bar. It has all an average user would need without going overboard with any over-the-top professional features, though the only thing that could be improved on is location precision.
7. GO Weather: best free version of a paid app
GO Weather offers reliable weather information, nicely displayed on a well-made user interface. In comparison to some other apps, weather updates happen a lot more frequently, and in addition to weather predictions, you’ll also get information on such things as sunrise and sunset, chances of precipitation, wind speeds and more. GO Launcher also comes with a live wallpaper which displays the various weather scenarios, plus it has a few widgets to choose between as well. There’s a free and a paid version of Go Weather Ex, but for those who don’t want to pay, you’ll have to put up with some in-app ads, plus you won’t have access to further weather details and additional content, like themes. Nonetheless, the weather information on the free version is just as accurate.
7. Google Now: best for simplicity
Google Now has a lot to offer in the form of cards which you can customize to show information that you need, when you need it. One of these is a weather card, which shows the daily forecast for your current location, work location and travel destinations. The display is very Google, simple, minimalistic, and informative. Plus you get information such as wind speeds, and the chance of rain. Another available card is for public alerts, which gets you emergency information that comes right from the National Weather Services and the U.S Geological Survey. You can get Google Now as long as you have a Google account, and the Google Search app installed on your Android device. Tap on the Google Search app, tap on the search box, or swipe from the bottom up and this will bring you to Google Now.
8. BBC Weather: best app for minimalists
With my foreigner’s preconception that it always rains in England, it makes sense for the BBC to have a really effective and accurate weather app. This one doesn't muddle around with a flashy interface and keeps it clear and simple bearing only the essentials. It includes hourly forecasts, location search and favorites, pressure, visibility and humidity information and extra details on pollen, pollution, UV and sunrise/set times. Coming in both landscape and portrait mode, it supports 7 and 10 inch tablets and provides a lock screen widget for devices running Android 4.2 and later. Some other functions include NFC sharing, text to speech and sharing via social networks. Install BBC Weather.
9. Arcus: super precise weather
The Arcus app series made by developers Kushan Jayatilleke comes with three apps: Archus Hyper Local Weather, Arcus Weather Pro Key and Arcus Weather for DashClock. The first listed is your basic forecast app broken down to the exact minute. The choice of either Holo theme dark or light give the interface a clean look. In terms of functions, it offers home screen and lock screen widgets, DashClock extensions, notifications, customizable viewing and more. The Pro version will get rid of ads and give you a few more custom locations to add.
10. eWeather HD, Radar HD, Alerts: best for weather in real-time
This next app isn’t free, however paying a little bit of money in the Android world goes a long way, especially if you consider the number of excellent free apps that exist. eWeather HD is a step up from a basic weather app and includes animated radars on Google maps to show you weather conditions happening in real time. By taking their data from known weather providers, like US weather, they are able to give some super accurate forecasts. There’s also a few widgets to choose from.
11. Eye in the Sky Weather: best minimalist widget
Eye in the Sky Weather is a very clear and clean app in its design. The widgets are available in four different sizes, from a minimalist view up to a five-day prediction. With a tap of the finger on the current day’s forecast, it opens up more information including wind speed, air pressure, humidity, current and forecasted temperature, and a prediction for the next five days.
A nice little addition is the icon set within the app, boasting 14 different icons. The predictive accuracy of forecast is within a few degrees of the “real” temperature, but with anything weather related, it’s a lot of guessing and predictions.
12. Android Weather & Clock Widget: best for widget customization
The free weather app Android Weather Widget & Clock comes with five beautiful widgets, which can be adjusted based on what type of information you want displayed. If you are not interested, for example, on knowing the humidity, you can easily just uncheck it in the Widget Settings. As well, you can also share the weather information with friends and contacts, which could be useful for planned events outside. The widgets are presented in an uncluttered look with realistic symbols and also enable you to save multiple locations at one time.
12. Weather Network Widget: best for ski bums
A popular app due to its user base, the Weather Network Widget comes with widgets in three different sizes. For more information, such as wanting to see a week long forecast, you can tap on the widget and bring up all the extra information including a rainfall radar and whatnot. Particularly useful is the ability to get ski reports from Canadian and American ski resorts as well as watch weather via video from within the app. While it's not as polished as some of the other widgets displayed above, it gets the information across and comes with a ton of detailed information should you need it.
What is your favorite weather app or widget for Android?