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Review: iOS 15 Apple Weather app

One of the biggest additions to iOS 15 this year was a brand new, redesigned Apple Weather app.

This was able to happen because Apple acquired Dark Sky Weather last year and integrating many features and functions of that app into its own.

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And with that, we now have this new Weather app on the iPhone, iPod Touch, Apple Watch, with the widget available on the iPad in iPadOS 15.

When it comes to the overall look of the new Weather app, it’s a great refresh. I still remember when the Weather app’s iOS 7 look was getting unveiled for the first time and saw the current weather animations like rain and snow in the background, and thought just how cool that looked and how it was going to make that app so much better looking for its users.

Several years later, that has been updated with a refreshed look of some of those animations.

Another feature I like about it is that the forecasts go more in-depth this time around. The fact that it tells you up above when you first open the app that it could be cloudy for a few hours, then tells you to expect precipitation around 7 p.m. that night really shows just how hard Apple is trying to make this app a go-to for its users, instead of other apps like your local news station’s app, The Weather Channel (ironically the primary data source for the new Weather app) and other third-party weather apps.

Notifications for incoming precipitation and severe weather alerts are another great added feature to the Weather app. It’s something that should have probably been on the app a while ago too.

I personally enjoyed seeing them on my iPhone and Apple Watch while testing the app out.

However, there are still some cons to the app.

First things first, me personally, I don’t like the new radar. Yes, I’m glad that it is there in the new Weather app, but I personally do not like it.

The storm cells all sort of appearing as this “glob” that to me makes it look like one-dimensional jello. You don’t actually get to see the green, orange, red or pink storm cells.

If you’re not familiar with more advanced radars, the layering of the precipitation on the radar could be weird to some people and could be misunderstood by them.

Another feature that while a pro is still also a con to me is the widgets for this app. Don’t get me wrong, I like that it has support for the widgets, but at the same time, there are a couple of major factors that are wrong with it.

The first is that I can’t edit it so instead of showing me the regular temperature, I can get the ‘feels like’ temperature. If you’re me and from Iowa or even the midwest, the temperature during the winter could be 12 degrees outside technically, but if the wind chill is under 0 degrees, then that temperature is not going to be as accurate as the ‘feels like’ temperature.

It’s a big deal to get that ‘feels like’ temperature on the display of the widget on my iPhone, but even more so my Apple Watch, and it is currently not an option. Yes, I can access it on my iPhone or Apple Watch in that Weather app, but that’s more unnecessary steps.

The other major issue with the Weather app comes on the iPad and it is this; Where is the Weather app?

Yes, you can add the Weather widget to the iPad, but when you tap on it like you would on the iPhone that would normally open the app, it opens a page for The Weather Channel where it shows you the weather from there.

If I wanted info from The Weather Channel directly, I would go to its website or already have its app downloaded on my iPad. You would think Apple would have finally given the iPad its own Weather app, especially since the iOS version has a radar in it now, but that is still not the case.

Lastly, with Apple getting its own new Weather app in iOS 15, it would be really great to get notifications on tvOS on the Apple TV and have a dedicated Weather app on the Apple TV from Apple. While not perfect, it would be nice to have and those weather-related notifications could be a true lifesaver since most people are not watching live local or cable TV anymore with the built-in Emergency Alert System warnings since they are likely streaming on services like Netflix, Hulu, Disney+, HBO Max, Prime Video, etc.

Although the new Weather app in iOS 15 does have its flaws like every other app on the market, it still gets 3/4 stars from me. The reason for this is that even though one might think I harshly critiqued this app after one or two iOS 15 updates since its release, the truth is this app is going to still help out a lot of people and do exactly what it needs for them.

While I do believe there is some work to be done with the app in the future, the good news is since it is so new, it should only be able to get better from here.

Rating: 3/4 stars

What are your thoughts on the new Apple Weather app? Comment below or let us know on Twitter at @appleosophy.

David Becker
Author: David Becker

Appleosophy Weekly

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Lou Howort
Lou Howort
11 days ago

The Dark Sky app is far superior to this one. Apple should be ashamed to pawn off this junk when it already owns Dark Sky. I guess that that there’s more money being paid for the weather space by the Weather Channel than they can get from Dark Sky.