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Review: Weatherbug Mobile

Weatherbug has been cranking out weather apps for years ranging from desktop widgets to mobile applications. They have recently released a Windows Mobile Professional version of their weather app, Weatherbug Mobile.

The application puts a good bit of weather information at your fingertips. Features include:

  • Live local weather from over 8,000 tracking stations
  • Severe Weather Alerts in real time
  • Animated local radar
  • Live and time-lapse images from over 1,000 weather cameras
  • International weather information

For our impressions of Weatherbug Mobile follow the break.

Setting up Weatherbug Mobile is not much different than any other application. Just point your mobile browser to http://windowsmobile.weatherbug.com and download the app. Install the cab file and your just about done.

When you first launch the application you will be prompted to enter your location either via GPS or manually. Once you set your location, the weather data is downloaded.

Weatherbug Layout

The main page of Weatherbug Mobile offers you the current conditions, any weather alerts, and the day's forecast.

At the bottom of the screen you will find a series of icons that will launch into the various layers of Weatherbug Mobile including the application's settings. Weatherbug Mobile is also touch navigable for certain pages. Unfortunately, it's not completely touch navigable. For example, you can swipe into the extended forecast from the main screen but can't swipe back to the main screen from the extended forecast. To do so, you have to rely on the icon.

The various windows of Weatherbug Mobile includes a detailed, current weather observations; detailed information about any weather alerts; seven day forecasts (plus detailed forecasts for each day); and weather radar. Currently the weather radar is not animated and hopefully this will be a feature of any updates to this application. The radar map is zoomable and while not animated, it does give you a good picture of the precipitation/storms in your area.

You also have access to various weather cameras if you want to get a picture of what the weather looks like. The locations are scrollable and it would have been nice to have had a drop down menu to select specific camera locations. As is, the navigation works but is time consuming to find your preferred location.

Overall Impression

The more I tinkered with Weatherbug Mobile, the more I liked it. I can live without the access to remote cameras and would gladly trade it for an animated radar. The amount of weather information this app provides is impressive and should meet most (if not all) of your weather needs.  If you're looking for an application for your weather needs, Weatherbug Mobile is definitely worth a try.

One last but very important detail about Weatherbug Mobile is that it is a free app. You can download it directly by visiting http://windowsmobile.weatherbug.com from your mobile browser or find it in the Windows Marketplace for Mobile by searching for "weatherbug".  Keep in mind that this is for Windows phones running Windows Mobile Pro (a.k.a. touch screen phones) and won't run on non-touch screen, Windows Mobile Standard phones.

Phil is the father of two beautiful girls and is the Dad behind Modern Dad. Before that he spent seven years at the helm of Android Central. Before that he spent a decade in a newsroom of a two-time Pulitzer Prize-finalist newspaper. Before that — well, we don't talk much about those days. Subscribe to the Modern Dad newsletter!

13 Comments
  • We are all very aware that you at WMExperts are very excited about your TouchPro 2's GIANT screen. I am pretty jealous, too. Unfortunately, and I am just guessing here, most of us have smaller screens. Some programs have a difficult time with our lowly QVGA screens, and it would be nice to see how it would look on our phones. It almost feels like a let down, when I load the program and can't see nearly as much on the screen as the screen shots you have. If I'm in the minoroty, please feel free to proceed as you have been. It was just a thought.
  • That should be expected (that you cannot see as much, no?). FWIW, Mal used to post a lot of screen shots via is 320x320 Treo Pro before he killed it. One thing you can do is get the HD2 when it comes out. Surely, you'll feel more superior then.
  • On the download page there's also a link to Weatherbug Direct. What is the difference between the two? It says in the very brief description that it puts the weather on your home screen. Does that mean it's intended for WM6.5 only? - Thanks.
  • WeatherBug Direct is a today plugin only, so it will really only be useful to you if you're running the stock today screen interface (ie, not titanium or other home screen apps).
  • Thanks for clarifying.
  • What does a "today plugin only" mean?
  • A Today Plugin is a small application that plugs in to the Windows Mobile Professional today screen. If you are using the new style today interface (Titanium/Zune), the old style today plugins won't work.
  • WeatherBug is aptly named. I downloaded their program from the Marketplace on my iPAQ 910c... and for the user who was wondering how it'll look on a QVGA screen, sorry I can't help you. WeatherBUG crashes right on startup. I can't tell what's the look of a program that doesn't even work!
  • Please try the version here: http://windowsmobile.weatherbug.com It most likely fixes the startup crash you were experiencing. We are uploading a new version to the Marketplace as we speak.
  • Thanks! Yes, the new version fixes the crash so I was able to see what the program offers. I really like the information WeatherBug offers. I don't like its interface. For the user wondering about QVGA, you may get better results if you have a portrait-screen device. On a fixed landscape device like the iPAQ 910c there's too much screen real-estate waste and therefore a LOT of scrolling. To give you an idea of the cramped screen, take that first screenshot where the temperature is displayyed. Crop it so the text "Weather Alerts" and everything below is cut off. That's the field of view you'll get on a landscape QVGA screen! I wish there was an option to replace those touch-friendly buttons with softkey menus - it'll leave more screen real estate for the main display to use, and the UI would make more sense for a keyboard-oriented device. For those on the majority with touchy-feely devices (TouchDiamond, Fuze, Omnia, etc.) WeatherBug has a lot to love. For those with limited screen real-estate, I wouldn't recommend WeatherBug.
  • You are correct that it doesn't layout that nicely in square QVGA (240X240). If you are interested, we have just released WeatherBug Elite on the Marketplace. It's a pay app, but it will eliminate the advertisement at the top which will make it more usable. Alex
  • Do any Weatherbug Mobile users know where the list of My Locations is saved? It would be nice to know so I could copy this to my memory card so that if/when I hard-reset my TP2 I don't have to re-enter My Locations manually.
    Thanks.
  • after i installed the weatherbug, i cannot find it on my today plugin list. how come?? i am using WM6.5