Weather, especially for those of us who live in England, is a constant source of discussion for many. In fact here in England it is jokingly considered rude if you don’t ask someone their thoughts on the current weather conditions at the beginning of a conversation. Jokes aside, knowing what the weather is going to do later in the day, tomorrow or the coming weekend is important for planning of events. That makes a good weather app for your Windows Phone equally as important.
Amazing Weather HD for Windows Phone is arguably one of the most complete and comprehensive weather apps in the Windows Phone Store today. It has continually updating weather information with support for both Live Tiles and your Lock Screen, forecasts, location awareness and of course current conditions. The app also is beautifully done with animated screens as you look at the weather location for locations literally around the world. While there are some limitations for those who don’t live in the United States – most notably weather radar support – this app provides outstanding weather information in a beautiful presentation. In my opinion it is well worth the $1.99 price of admission.
Amazing Weather HD for Windows Phone starts by asking permission to use your device’s GPS and finding a location near you.
You will be given not only cities but personal weather stations near by as part of the Weather Underground network. It also will give you the distance to that weather station so you can determine which one is closest to you (although they are in order of distance). Once you have selected a location you are given the current weather conditions. Here you will see the first of the beautifully animated backgrounds in the app. The screenshots I took for this review were done on Monday, 25 August 2014. It was raining and the background showed animated raindrops falling onto my screen. It is beautiful to watch and there are several you will see depending on the weather conditions: Blowing leaves, clouds whizzing by, fog and bright sunshine with blue skies.
The current weather page also gives you at a glance information such as the humidity level, barometric pressure, visibility and the amount of precipitation that has fallen today. You will also see the sunrise and sunset times for your location and at the bottom you have a 5 day forecast with the maximum and minimum temperatures and the predicted precipitation percentage. For one screen, the Amazing Weather HD for Windows Phone app packs a lot of information.
If you tap on one of the days in the lower forecast you will give more detailed information about the next 24 hours including the anticipated rain or snow levels expected, temperatures and wind. If you swipe to the right you will get the next day’s forecasted information and so on. In all you have 10 days of forecasts available by swiping side to side but of course anything beyond 3 days is generally going to have a wide margin of error.
On the menu bar in the app, if you tap the clock icon, this will bring you to an hourly view of the expected weather over the course of the next 36 hours. You can view this both as a table or as a
chart, which ever is easier for you.
If there is a disappointment with Amazing Weather HD it is the radar support. Essentially, for those of us who live outside of the United States, we are pretty much out of luck. That’s a shame and it certainly limits some of the functionality of the app. From what I could tell in my testing for this review, the radar function works rather nicely with the ability to zoom in and out of the map to suit your viewing needs.
Now to be fair to the developer, radar information in Europe is, for whatever reason, difficult to get. Most apps don’t support it and if they do, it is not exactly amazing. My point to those of you outside of America: If you are buying this app for its radar function, don’t. There is plenty of other reasons to get it but you are going to be disappointed if this is your main reason.
One of the aspects of Amazing Weather HD I love is the full support for all the goodness that is Windows Phone. Live Tiles are supported and they can be transparent. These tiles can also be small, medium or wide in size to suit your needs. Obviously the larger the more content you get on it. Further, the app supports
Lockscreen so you can have weather information along with your calendar and other notifications there. The app supports a wide range of styles from the animated wallpaper view I’ve shown already to a dark or light metro UI to go along with the overall flow you have setup on your Windows Phone.
Overall I’ve been quite pleased with Amazing Weather HD for Windows Phone. All of the functionality you need in a weather app is there and it has been very stable in daily use. The Live Tiles stay reasonably up-to-date (make sure you enabled background services) and my only real disappointment is the lack of radar support outside of the United States.
So is it worth the $1.99? In my opinion yes. There are certainly less expensive apps out there and even free ones that provide some of the information this app provides. You have it all in one here and if you are a weather geek you will particularly enjoy using this app.
Amazing Weather HD for Windows Phone is available now in the Windows Phone Store. It is $1.99 and requires Windows Phone 8.0 or later.