When you search for “weather” in the app store, the list is seemingly endless. We downloaded more than 20 apps to evaluate the pros and cons, compare, and ultimately present you with the best weather app for 2021.
Let’s start with our list of weather apps in the app store in addition to each weather app rating. As you can see from the list below, there is no shortage of weather apps for you to choose from in 2021!
- The Weather Channel rating: 4.7
- Accuweather rating: 4.6
- Weather Underground rating: 4.2
- NOAA Weather Radar rating: 4.4
- WeatherBug rating: 4.7
- The Weather by Impala Studio rating: 4.5
- MyRadar rating: 4.8
- Weatherlive rating: 4.6
- What The Forecast rating: 4.6
- Weather by Luni rating: 4.6
- Weather+ by Impala Studios rating: 4.5
- Windy.com rating: 4.8
- The Weather America by Byss Mobile rating: 4.6
- Yahoo Weather rating: 4.5
- The Weather Forecast rating: 4.5
- Weather Now rating: 4.7
- Hello Weather rating: 4.7
- Carrot Weather rating: 4.7
- Weather & Radar by WetterOnline rating: 4.6
- Apple Weather rating: NA
- ClimaCell rating: 4.6
We’ll offer visuals and a brief overview for the top 35 weather apps to give you a look and feel for each, and highlight some of the more interesting features. It’s important to note that most all weather apps offer the ability to customize settings for things including units, time, display mode, in addition to all the traditional consumer app engagement features such as ads, ad free paid plans, notifications, alerts, privacy settings…etc.
ClimaCell’s List of 21 Weather Apps
1. The Weather Channel
Owned by IBM, the Weather Channel weather app offers users hourly and daily forecasts, an interactive radar map, in addition to a top stories section which includes top news coverage and weather related stories. The app visualizes weather parameters including wind, humidity, dew point, pressure, UV index, and more. By using IBM Watson, the app also shows the daily new Coronavirus case numbers in your given location. There are also health and activity features along with air quality offerings for you to track air pollution risk.
The Accuweather weather app offers users a look into both daily and hourly weather forecasts, in addition to an interactive map that includes mapping layers for radar, satellite, tropical storms and more. Users can also look at weather data for an entire month, and view historical weather from the year prior on any given day. For users worried about air quality, the app includes the air quality scale and pollutants for your location.
3. Weather Underground
Also owned by IBM, the Weather Underground weather app offers users one continuous scrolling experience as opposed to having multiple tabs to select from. While the user offering includes current temperature, precipitation, wind, air quality, and the traditional weather parameters, users can also see the times of sunset and sunrise. The app also offers what Weather Underground calls a “Smart Forecast” which allows you to schedule your favorite activities and plans during the best time of day and day of week based on the incoming weather. The Smart Forecast is a paid option only in the app, however, not something users can access for free.
4. NOAA Weather Radar
The NOAA Weather Radar weather app is highly focused on getting people to use the paid version of the app. Upon entering the app, the first screen appears to be a “ad-free” only option, however, there is an X in the top left corner you can click to access the app for free. Once in the app, however, while the weather features users want are present such as precipitation forecasts, snow depth, fires and more, most all of them are only available with the Premium version of the app. You can use the interactive map for free, but if you want to see additional forecast details, get alerts, or get additional details about your area it most likely will require you to upgrade.
The WeatherBug weather app offers all the standard weather parameters and features users need including things like current weather, hourly, and the 10 day. From there, however, the app goes on to offer users a commuter map showing traffic and commuting routes for people going to and from work, or simply traveling during the course of the day. Users can interact with the map, dashboard, customize routes, and even watch specific traffic cameras from around their local area and state depending on the direction they are traveling.
6. The Weather App by Impala Studio is a fairly concise user experience, showing standard weather forecast options, a multi-day outlook, and an interactive map with layer features including precipitation and satellite. For additional features such as extended rain radar or detailed hurricane information, users need to upgrade to the premium version of the app.
7. MyRadar Weather App
The MyRadar weather app, while offering all the traditional weather tracking options and parameters including forecasts and interactive maps, also offers additional features to users. Users can fully customize their interactive map experience to include features such as high def radar, lightning, air quality, clouds, and more. If you’re looking for content, the app includes a plentiful source of shows and media for you to consume, and for the extra curious folks that want to see what’s happening beyond our planet, the app also offers a live look to Mars and goes so far as to highlight the future location of Elon Musk’s home.
The Weatherlive app is also a scroll based app, essentially offering users a feed to look through for all their weather needs. Included alongside the standard weather parameters, are additional features such as oceanic information for sea temperature, wave height, low, and high tides. Users can also get information visibility, hurricane tracker data, and photography recommendations for people that want to know the Golden and Blue hours for morning and evening in their given location.
The creatively named WTForecast brings users a different approach to the weather, adding a bit of humor to the user experience. Once you get past the purposefully profane based on-boarding, the app is one continuous scrolling experience acting similar to a social media feed. Features for users include current conditions, hourly forecast, daily forecast, current conditions and some cleverly written content and puns.
10. Weather by Luni
Weather by Luni weather app offers users fairly uneventful weather parameters in their free version. While users are able to track specific cities which can be a fun and useful feature, the majority of weather features are sitting behind a paywall with the Weather Premium offering. The user experience for Weather by Luni includes a weather screen, cities, radar, as well as settings where you can customize the app even if you are a free user.
11. Weather+ by Impala Studios
Weather+ by Impala Studios is a visual focused weather app, and users experience it right from the start with vibrant backgrounds accompanying weather forecasts. The app offers a number of weather videos/gifs for users to implement as their background including cloudy, rain, snow, sunny…etc, the majority of options need to be unlocked by either upgrading to Premium or watching a series of ads and accumulating enough credit to unlock new backgrounds. The settings, while available for free users, are solely offering customization for brightness, widget settings, and unit settings.
The Windy weather app is of course best known for their focus on wind direction, speed, and visual app experience, but the app also offers users many additional features. App users can customize their map, which acts as the central experience of the app to hone in on wind, rain, thunder, temperature, clouds, waves, air quality, and more layers. For the active minded crowd, the app also provides information around airports, paragliding, kite sports, tide forecasts, and active fires (which are heavily impacted by the wind amongst other parameters).
13. The Weather America by Byss Mobile
The Weather America by Byss Mobile weather app is a visual weather app with vibrant colors, an interactive map, and all the normal weather features and offerings. Where the app also offers additional help for users trying to plan activities is with its weather parameter charts helping visualize the weather over the course of a given day. For free users, the charts include temperate and precipitation, but paying users can access a chart called “Sun Time” which is an interesting way to consume weather data for those planning on being outside, scheduling activities, or simply trying to find the warmest part of the day let the kids play in the yard.
14. Yahoo Weather
The Yahoo weather app offers users access to a number of standard and interactive weather features. Outside of seeing current, hourly, daily forecasts and more, users can also get brief commentary on what they’re seeing in the app. For instance, the app offers commentary such as “clear winds 9 to 11 MPH” and goes on to highlight the overnight temperature, bringing a little bit more of a human experience to the app. Yahoo has also built an air quality tracker, Coronavirus data based on your location, an interactive map, and Sun & Wind display.
15. The Weather Forecast App
The Weather Forecast app is a scrolling based app offering users a weather feed, and while the app has a number of features available, most are sitting behind a paywall. Free users of course can access the traditional weather parameters they need and get information on air quality, Moon & Sun, and even photography best times to shoot, but again you’ll need to pay in order to access some of the more in-depth features and layers within the weather map and radar functionality.
16. Weather Now App
Arguably the most interesting and engaging feature of the Weather Now app is the interactive planet screen, where users can move all around the earth in a fun and visual way to obtain weather forecasts and data. From there, users can access a weather forecast that has a local news like visual appeal, in addition to an interactive weather map across all the usual weather parameters.
17. Hello Weather App
The Hello Weather App, which is currently powered by Dark Sky gives users weather features by location, forecast, and radar. While free users can access locations and forecasts which show what’s happening now, tonight, tomorrow, and next week, the rest of the app including radar and additional functionality is sitting behind a paywall that users will need to pay for in order to access. Some of the paid features include radar, Apple Watch, additional data sources, smart forecasts, air quality, pollen and more.
18. Carrot Weather App
With no free option, the Carrot Weather App offers users a unique experience that speaks to the weather enthusiasts looking to have a little fun along the way. The first thing users notice in the visually focused app, is fun content with quotes such as “Make the most of this nice weather that I generated for you. Or else.” Additionally, the app offers a number of notification options, as well as exploratory experiences like their exotic secret location discovery feature. Standard to the Carrot experience, all screen are equipped with witty content that give users an entertaining and engagement experience..
19. Weather & Radar by WetterOnline
The Weather & Radar app by WetterOnline is a concise experience for users, offering daily forecasts, evening / night / morning / afternoon forecasts, 14 day weather charts, an interactive weather map, and finally a top news feed focused on the top weather stories of the day. Users can customize features such as “feels like” temperature and wind arrows at 4 mph, up to 8 mph, or above 8 mph.
20. Apple Weather app
While Apple does not disclose ratings for their app, we still wanted to highlight the user experience. Users can select the specific cities they want to track weather for, and then see the hourly and daily forecast for the given location. The app also tracks additional weather parameters including air quality, sunrise and sunset, visibility, wind, snow, humidity, and more.
21. ClimaCell Weather App
One thing you’ve likely noticed across the majority of weather apps on this list, is most all of them block features behind a paywall. ClimaCell, however, takes the opposite approach, giving users full access to its elite weather app full of useful and engaging weather features.
To start, ClimaCell’s weather app shows all of the relevant weather parameters at a global and hyperlocal level on one screen. Users can easily see standard weather parameters such as temperature, wind direction, and humidity, but can then also access air quality, visibility, sunrise and sunset, and more without having to navigate to a different screen or upgrade to a premium version of the app.
Second, while ClimaCell offers all the weather data users are used to seeing, the main focus of the app is helping users plan their lives instead of wasting time trying to figure out what the forecast means for them. For instance, if you want to play tennis tomorrow, how helpful is it to know that there’s a 40% chance of rain? Not very. With ClimaCell, users can select the activities they like best, and then the app will automatically tell them the precise time of day and day of week when the conditions will be ideal for that activity based on their desired location. ClimaCell offers more than 25 different activities from golf to fishing to the best time of night to set off fireworks on the fourth of July based on visibility conditions. Furthermore, ClimaCell integrates with your calendar so you can automatically get alerts for your upcoming activities if the weather changes. The calendar feature is the perfect way to ensure your special picnics or hikes don’t get unexpectedly ruined by bad weather.
For those looking for additional weather content, ClimaCell also launched Stories which not only highlight pressing weather news, but also take an educational approach with articles meant to teach users about the weather. For instance there have been articles recently published on whether or not lightning can actually strike twice in the same place, how Porsche incorporates air quality systems into their cars, what causes leaves to turn colors, and more. Regardless if you’re looking to learn more about the weather, stay current, or just want to make sure you have some talking points for your next social engagement, ClimaCell Stories is the place to go.
Weather App Pricing
For those of you interested in pricing, we also compiled a list of all the current prices across each of the top 21 weather apps. As we mentioned, ClimaCell offers you 100% of its features completely free.
- The Weather Channel pricing: $29.99 per year
- Accuweather pricing: $8.99 per year
- Weather Underground pricing: $19.99 per year
- NOAA Weather Radar pricing: $19.99 per year
- WeatherBug pricing: $3.99 per year
- The Weather by Impala Studio pricing: $8.49 per year (year 1)
- MyRadar pricing: $9.99 per year
- Weatherlive pricing: $19.99 per year
- What The Forecast pricing: $1.99 to remove ads (with in-app upgrade offers)
- Weather by Luni pricing: $39.99 per year
- Weather+ by Impala Studios pricing: $8.49 per year
- Windy.com pricing: $18.99 per year
- The Weather America by Byss Mobile pricing: $19.99 per year
- Yahoo Weather pricing: Free
- The Weather Forecast pricing: $3.99 per week (not a typo)
- Weather Now pricing: $9.99 per year
- Hello Weather pricing: $8.99 per year
- Carrot Weather pricing: $4.99 install fee (with in-app upgrade offers)
- Weather & Radar by WetterOnline pricing: $6.99 per year
- Apple Weather pricing: Free
- ClimaCell pricing: $19.99 per year
Get the Best Weather App
Ultimately, we all have our preferences, and the most important thing to keep in mind is to be mindful of the weather, air quality, and the impact on our daily lives. Being able to trust your weather provider to help you better plan your life and be prepared is the most important factor when selecting a weather app. As you venture into 2021, we recommend you start by trying the weather app that was designed to make your life easier. ClimaCell isn’t providing standard weather forecasts that keep you guessing as to how they’ll impact your life, but rather ClimaCell is laser focused on telling you what you need to know and when based on your life, your preferences, and your needs. Everything in one place. Actionable recommendations. 100% automated for you, so you never have to worry about the weather again.