Review: My Cast Weather
My Cast Weather, by Digital Cyclone
- Great interface and visual style
- Information easy to access
- Limited weather data
- Limited customization
[Comment: The past couple of months have been extremely hectic and busy, thus I haven't really been able to write any reviews. While things are still more busy than I would like, it looks like things are slowing down a bit, and I hope to catch up on some of the reviews. I know that there are some people who have given me promo codes and I owe a review - you have not been forgotten!]
When I moved to Florida in 2004, I really started getting "into" weather. Living in a hurricane region will do that, plus the research I was doing involved looking at weather patterns. With the iPhone, there are a number of weather programs, including the iPhone's built in Weather App. I have looked at these, but I think I have found my preferred app in My Cast Weather.
My Cast Weather is a simple, straightforward weather app that really goes out of it's way to provide a clean, easy to user interface. In my mind, this is one area that some apps lack - they may provide a lot, but the pull the user out of the iPhone/Apple "ease of use" mode. My Cast Weather fits in perfectly. With My Cast Weather you can look at current conditions, a 7 day forecast, weather maps, and severe weather alerts. You don't have the video weather report that some apps like The Weather Channel have, but how many people really spend time watching those anyway?
The current conditions includes lots of information that people can use - standards like temperature, wind, humidity, but also things like visibility, air quality, records highs and lows, and even sun rise and sunset information. The various weather data also shows a small graph showing you how the conditions (humidity, for example) will be trending. The tab button on the bottom even tells you the current temperature, regardless of what screen you are looking at.
The forecast tab is for a 7 day forecast. You can have a "condensed" forecast, with only temperature high and low, and rain probability, or you can tap on the screen and get a detailed forecast (basically a breakdown of what the day and night will be). I wish it was 10 days instead of 7, but it is still nice.
If you are on either of those screens and hold the iPhone in landscape mode, you get a nice forecast graph, showing the information (temperature, winds, dewpoint) graphically over the next seven days. A nice touch!
The maps feature allows you to look at local weather and climate maps, including radar, visible clouds, IR, and stormwatch. You can also overlay the current conditions, temperatures, dewpoints, winds directions, or wind speeds. Lots of information at your fingertips! One nice thing is that radar and clouds maps are animated.
If you have a severe weather alert in your area, you can get those alerts as well. For example, putting in Providence, RI as your location, you get all the flood warnings!
I do wish there were some additional features. Adding options like rainfall amount, actually listing the precipitation probability (instead of just showing a bar), listing cumulative rainfall...but most "general" weather apps don't include this information, so I am not surprised it is not included here. I would love to also see things like the pollen index and other "indicators". I also wish there were options to include/exclude specific information in the forecast page (so you could get more information), as well as a 10 day forecast.
All in all, this is a nice, slick looking, easy to use weather app. It has some nice information, and presents it is a way that is visually pleasing. While it may not have all the bells and whistles of some of the other apps, this app provides enough information to be useful, and make it easy to get teh data you want. At $3.99, it isn't a "cheap" app, but it looks polished and delivers a lot for the money. Four and a half out of five stars.
* = No redeeming qualities or features, probably not worth it even if it is free
** = Few redeeming qualities, or is simply isn't worth the price
*** = Some good features but also some clear flaws.
**** = A solid app, worth the money if interested, a few flaws or problems or slightly overpriced
***** = Top of the line app, no problems or drawbacks.
Price is factored into the ratings. Ratings are lowered if I feel the price of the app outweighs the benefits/enjoyment/features it provides. Likewise, an app that is a good value for the money will have a higher rating.