When will it rain? New weather app tells exactly when!
There is no difficulty finding a weather app..there are dozens..most apps use the same terminology such as the one in the graphic at the left..scattered showers in my forcast area. Trouble is..that means it could rain somewhere in the 500 square kilometers that make up my forecast area..not very helpful if I am planning a back yard barbecue. A new app from Montreal based developer Sky Motion comes to the rescue.
Most weather forecasting apps aim for medium to long term accuracy and cover large geographic areas..Sky Motion introduces the concept of Nowcasting by focusing on a two hour window and a 1 square Km area..pretty much your back yard. The app takes the guesswork out of the Probability of Precipitation (P.O.P.). Using geolocation, radar observation, motion tracking and other technology borrowed from the computer graphic and video game industry, the application provides highly localized forecasts by tracking every rain cloud’s movement over the U.S.A and Canada in real-time, automatically creating a new personal forecast every five minutes that is unique to the 1 km2 user’s location.
Sounds great, but does it actually work? Over two days of testing I found it pretty accurate give or take five minutes. Today is one of those days when it could rain any minute..or not. It rained when Sky Motion said it would and did not rain when the app predicted no rain..because it is one of those days, I found the further out you went on the two hour forecast the iffier it got..but Sky Motion was just about bang on up to 30 minutes out.
The Sky Motion app is currently only available for iOS devices..but there is a web version that looks pretty good on my Google Nexus 7 tablet..same accuracy..best if your device is GPS capable… except you need a data connection..happily WiFi hotspots are pretty to find these days.
This is a cool weather app for keeping track of when it might rain..or snow..it works for all kinds of precipitation..pretty accurate in my testing. This first version is a bit limited..I would like to see an alert function for events such as thunderstorms or hail and it would be nice to see regular forecasts so you only need one app. An Android version is essential…I am told it is coming soon.
The Sky Motion app is currently available for free at the Apple App Store.