AppMonday: Weather Timeline
iOS has its share of neat weather apps, but what if you’re after something clean and useful on Android? For that, you turn to a timeline.
Specifically, you go for a “Weather Timeline”, which is the name of an Android app offering owners of Android phones, tablets, and even smartwatches something that looks a little different than the regular Accuweather widget so many are using, while also providing a fair amount of customisation in the package.
The app doesn’t cost much — a dollar will pay for it — and provides a local set of forecasts, as well as being able to add the places you’ve probably already added to another weather app already found on your phone.
Maybe it’s where your folks live, or possibly the holiday spot you can’t wait to jet off to, but you can throw quite a few locales in place just like you can in other apps, and some of these may even offer little touches of artwork based on those places.
Open up the location and you’ll find a “right now” screen showing all the information you need about the world outside in a convenient colourful little block, with the colour indicating what the outside world is, as well as icons and small blocks of text for the wind speed, if it’s going to rain, when sunset is, how much humidity is in the air, visibility and more.
You get a small ladder leading you to the next hour and what the conditions are going to be like, as well as the next 24 hours, which you can jump into and see an hour-by-hour chart of what the weather will be like, clicking into each of these to see more information about what is expected at this time.
Snap out of this and you’ll find on that same ladder the next seven days, and each of this can be jumped into quite easily, too, with information and easy to read colour blocks visible here, too.
Past this, you’ll even find a radar with rain tracking, and if you rotate your display, you’ll even see a wider look at the temperature and rain, handy if you want a more detailed look in one view.
Overall, it’s a very easy to read and colourful display as to what the weather is going to look like for any place you might be, and it does this without photos.
Rather, it’s just colours, icons, and text, with a minimalistic design that works well with the Material Design logic Google has been putting into action with Android “Lollipop”, which is on quite a lot of phones now.
Weather Timeline has a few neat touches going for it against some of the other weather apps we’ve seen in the past, and customisation is definitely one of them.
There are just so many options available to you, from modifying the look with preset themes to your own take on how the colours should work, with units of measurement all fairly easy to tweak, and then how you’ll get notified if the weather modelling indicates that there will be rain.
You can even change where the information is coming from, so you’re not stuck with a weather source you think is always wrong, like relying on the weatherman on TV that you know in your gut is never getting it right.
As a weather app, you can expect a few widgets to decorate your home screen, and Weather Timeline doesn’t disappoint in this area at all, offering 13 different widgets, complete with the same sort of high level customisation the app itself offers, such as transparency and colour choice, icon selection, and the extent of the forecast you’re looking for.
You could technically build a home screen just made from Weather Timeline widgets, turning that screen into your very own personal meteorologist.
Owners of an Android Wear watch will also find a simple watch face waiting for them, added to their collection of faces on the smartwatch operating system, and this provides a very basic watch with the colour of the forecast — is it yellow and sunny, or cloudy and grey? — and the temperature in whichever unit of measurement you figured would work best for you.
Touch the display and you’ll find a basic forecast of what the weather should be like for the next hour, and touch it again for a 24 hour look at the weather around you, complete with a small colour bar graph detailing what the sky will be like.
If you’re totally dependent on a basic watch face on an Android watch and are frequently checking the weather on your phone because you’re just wired that way, the Weather Timeline watch face will definitely help out, allowing you to leave your phone in your pocket and just make sure the sun is going to be shining on your way out the door.
Finally, you get the keys to your very own DeLorean. Sort of.
Provided you’re aware of “Back to the Future” — and who isn’t? — you’ll find a time machine feature built directly into the Weather Timeline app, with the ability to go forward in time to see what the weather is expected to be like at a certain time, as well as backward in time if you feel like reminiscing about that hot August night you remember playing records to.
The time machine even comes with that DeLorean we mentioned before (it’s basically an in-joke for the whole time machine reference), complete with a nod to hitting 88 miles per hour (again, another “Back to the Future” nod), and while the information may not be totally iron clad, this time machine should give you a rough indication as to what the weather might be like in time, though of course, it can change.
From what we understand, this will be based on computer modelling analysing the pressure systems, temperatures, and other aspects of meteorological science, though there’s only so much one can obviously do, so an indication of a future temperature and weather condition is probably better than no indication at all.
All up, however, it’s well worth the dollar we spent on it, and if you’re in the market for a better weather app on Android, or at the very least, a better weather widget, Weather Timeline is definitely worth a look see, providing solid features for less than the price of a bottle of water that you might need on a hot day.
Weather Timeline is available now on Android smartphones and tablets, as well as Android Wear smartwatches for $0.99.