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The Weather Channel has updated its Android app for smartphones and tablets with the biggest redesign since 2009, with a cleaner interface, better maps, and unfortunately, more advertising.
While The Weather Channel might be one of the less exciting apps out there, it is one of the most popular mobile apps across all platforms due to, you know, people needing to know the forecast. As of mid-January, The Weather Channel’s tablet and smartphone apps have been downloaded more than 100 million times. The company also did a heavy redesign of its website in May 2012 and that site alone attracts more than 1 billion pageviews each month from 60 million unique visitors.
The company spotlights the following new features:
- Easier access to current conditions, severe weather information, hourly forecasts, 36-hour forecasts, and 10-day forecasts
- An immediate narrative of what to expect, ie. “dry conditions will continue,” “expect rain until 4 p.m.,” gives users a better idea of how weather will affect their day.
- New localized maps and map layers include past and future radar, severe weather bulletins, and tropical cyclone tracking.
- Weather-triggered backgrounds
- Simpler user interface for navigation and quicker access to information
- Improved management for saved locations enables a more intuitive user interface. Set up your favorites to take full advantage of new weather widgets and notifications.
- Option to expand detailed weather data that is collapsed for a better visual experience
- Share weather forecasts, maps, alerts and more with family and friends to Facebook, Twitter and other major social networks.
- Automatic updates of localized weather, using your current TruPointSM location, and a new refresh button for immediate updates
While that is a lot of new features, some early user reviews of the new app aren’t flattering, with many of those who have updated now seeing many more ads and app crashes:
To be fair, some reviews are positive as well, with a few users praising the redesign and the new interface.
Check out a few more screenshots of the app below: