AppMonday: Rain Parrot (iOS, Apple Watch)
You can always rely on Murphy’s Law if you ever decide to take your umbrella out to find that it doesn’t rain, forcing you to carry the thing around regardless, but Rain Parrot could help with a dash of hyperlocal forecasts.
This AppMonday, the app we’re checking out might have you learning a new word, because weather forecasts aren’t the same as the used to be. While the science of it still has some guesswork involved, the combination of radars, pressure system tracking, computer models, and a bunch of algorithms does allow some weather forecasting to be more accurate.
Some tracking systems even focus on hyperlocal predictions (there’s your new word, say it with us: “hyperlocal”), with this idea being based around a prediction local to your specific region that feels a little more accurate. We’re not talking a basic seven day forecast here, but rather “it will ran in 20 minutes for 38 minutes, ease off, and then a storm will occur”.
That’s a hyperlocal forecast, with the information of such a thing being more relevant to your immediate presence than just that forecast you check on your phone’s default weather app.
iPhone app “Rain Parrot” has been made with these hyperlocal forecasts in mind, and as the name suggests, these are specific to rain forecasting.
The app is pretty simple and offers only a few screens for you to browse through, with a main forecast screen allowing you to swipe through three hour weather changes complete with the seven day forecast and rain amount expectations, while the second screen is probably the most important.
This one is about the approaching rain, if there is any at all, with a graph displaying rain amount from light to very heavy, not only revealing amount, but also the time it should arrive, found in either a circular timer or that graph.
Rain Parrot’s last screen is that radar you’ve come to know and love every time you’ve peek out the window, seen clouds, and said “time to check the BOM”, the acronymic way of saying Bureau of Meteorology, the Australian government department for tracking and checking the weather.
This combination of information together with whatever special sauce Rain Parrot is working off caters for some surprisingly accurate rain tracking, with alerts found on your phone for when is going to arrive.
Further, you can also control when these alerts come to you via the settings, with the app preset to provide these alerts from 7am through to 10pm, though you can control these on an hourly basis.
And if you have an Apple Watch, you’ll even have a few screens to sort through too, with pint-sized information screens, mini weather radar, and the temperature outside.
We’ve loved using this app, and its cost of free (at the time of publication, anyway) makes it very compelling, though we do wish Rain Parrot had a version available for Android and Android Wear, as it would be nice to see this excellent app on more than just iOS devices.
That said, if you’re in the iOS system, we’d recommend giving this one a try, as the hyperlocal predictions are very useful, especially when you’re unsure whether it’s worth carrying that umbrella all day and looking a bit nuts for doing so.
Rain Parrot is available now for iPhone and Apple Watch for free.