The digital revolution that has gripped the entire world has impacted every industry, and that includes weather forecasting as well. It may not seem like a big deal, but we are living in the age of climate change. Weather events are getting more intense and dangerous all around the world. This has led to an influx of weather and radar stations, satellites, computers, and scientists that provide people with real-time updates on the weather at every hour of every day.
There have been hundreds of weather apps launched in this last year alone, as people want to stay up to date with the latest weather events of their hometown or locality. It has also been estimated that developing a weather app is among the hottest trends in app development. The best thing about building a weather app is that all the hard work, i.e. the forecasting is completed by others. That is why it is imperative that you pick an API that offers you the best weather forecasting.
There are over 11,000 weather-related mobile applications on both Android and iOS combined, and there is greater demand for more. So, how do you manage to make your weather app stand out from the rest? You do that by coming up with a unique value point or UVP for your app. It offers specific features and targets a different audience to help distinguish you from the competition. We are going to cover the basics of making a weather app in this free guide, with tips and tricks for developing an outstanding product.
Uncovering the demand for weather apps
Most startups don’t prefer building weather apps, even though there have been hundreds of success stories. Businesses have made tons of money from weather apps. There are certain elements that make a weather app hard to ignore, most notably:
- Retention and reach rate
- Enhanced engagement
- Customer loyalty
The demand for weather apps is the highest in certain industries and select businesses that thrive on weather-related news and up-to-date knowledge of weather events. These are:
Traveling to any new place requires you to acquire knowledge of the weather conditions in that place, so you can pack appropriate attire. That is the reason why travel agencies require weather apps since they want to provide travelers with the best possible information related to weather in any destination they are choosing to travel.
Online Media Producers
Online media producers also have an interest in developing weather apps, because radio broadcasting centers, TV stations, and local and county news networks thrive on supplying weather-related news to audiences. The reason for their interest in weather apps is mainly down to:
- Building and enhancing brand loyalty, so that people choose to use their weather app every day and keep coming back to that application.
- A brand that offers a cool weather app to its followers will create hype in the industry, and more people will want to use the app.
- They can use the weather app to offer real-time news from the app, to increase engagement and take advantage of revenue generated from ads.
These were just some of the reasons why online media producers are keen on developing weather apps.
The local authorities in areas that are prone to extreme weather events will obviously want to create weather apps. These apps help them in informing people about dangerous weather events. Cities, areas, states, and countries that are prone to hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, and wildfires will want to create weather apps for the public. These are some of the reasons why local authorities may choose to develop weather apps:
- Accurate and fast weather broadcasts
- Complete weather information to help plan activities
- Develop emergency management blocks for enhanced disaster preparation
- Highlighting important alerts to people on their smartphones
- Showing the local population that they are under good management.
Any good local authority will choose to develop weather apps to ensure that they can supply their local population with the best weather-related updates possible.
Acquiring weather data – The APIs that you should consider
The top-rated weather apps on the Appstore or on Google Play are filled with ads and have too many restrictions and features that aren’t necessary. If you really want to make a successful weather app, it is imperative that you create one that offers users everything they want.
We will share the secrets of making a great weather app in this free guide, including how to integrate a minimalist and simple user interface, and selecting the best APIs for accurate weather data. Here are the top 5 weather APIs you can choose from:
It is one of the best resources for accurate weather data and offers daily and hourly forecasts for any location.
This is another great weather API that offers a unique set of tools for analyzing weather data and using that information in the application.
World Weather Online API
Among the very best weather API, you will find that it is a favorite for travel agencies since it offers features that help in planning cruises. This API provides real-time weather forecasts for up to 15 days. You can also customize certain characteristics of the API, based on your needs.
DarkSky was another popular API that was used for creating a weather app. It is available in over 39 languages and offers 19 different meteorological conditions all around the world.
Important Features in any Weather App
The weather API is the heart of your weather app and integrating it into your weather app is the most important step. That is because it will determine the forecasting system of your app, but there are other significant features that will help take your app to the next level. These features must be integrated in the correct manner to ensure that your app is running smoothly and provides great value to your target audience as well. These features include the following:
This is an extremely important feature of your weather app and is necessary for offering users with up-to-date weather-related information when they aren’t using the app. Push notifications can be implemented in several ways into any weather app, and here is how you can use them:
- Send short forecasts for the day, first thing in the morning
- Inform users about noticeable weather changes, like snow, rain, windy etc.
- Use emergency alerts for natural disasters like tornados, wildfires, floods, and hurricanes etc.
Most weather APIs do offer push notifications, so you won’t need to integrate them into your app if you select the right weather API.
Updated forecasts and weather
The screen that will be used most frequently in the application is going to be the one with the latest weather forecasts. You must have this feature in your weather app because without this, you will not have a functional weather app. Every weather app has this screen, but the way you display the information to users is going to help you attract users to your weather app. The important information your weather app must display on this screen is:
- Forecasts for the day at different times
- Current weather conditions, including temperature
- The current weather conditions and feels like
You can display all other data on separate screens, including interactive maps and weekly forecasts.
The user interface (UI)
The most important aspect of your weather app is going to be the user interface (UI) of your app. If that isn’t properly designed you will struggle to attract more users. You must aim to make the app display aesthetically pleasing, which means keeping things minimal and add customization options. The more freedom you offer to users the greater the engagement is going to be with your app. Here are some key aspects of the user interface of your weather app:
- Make it move
- Use custom elements
- Don’t stack a lot of information
The great thing about weather apps is that they are needed by a lot of people and get used daily. However, you must ensure that you use the right user interface if you want to make a difference and help your app stand out from the rest of the competition.
You should focus on adding extra functionality features to your weather app so that you can meet all the expectations and desires of the target audience. This means being creative and thinking out-of-the-box, as those are key aspects of attracting clients to your weather app. Some extra features you can offer in your weather app are:
- Interactive maps
- Smart forecasts
- Online webcams of your locality
- Emergency list of essentials
- Sunset and sunrise time for travelers
These features and many more are going to make your weather app stand out from the competition and will help you create better brand engagement and visibility online.
Once you have formatted, edited and coded your weather app, you will get a completely functional weather app: one that will allow you to explore the Weather API and increase engagement on your application. You may also need to use more weather icons to stand out from other weather apps that are in direct competition with you.