Weatherbug revamps mobile app with alerts, local forecasts
By Rimma Kats
March 15, 2013
Weatherbug has redesigned its mobile application to feature forecasts and alerts, as well as minute-by-minute, mile-by-mile lightning strike information.
The app now features a slide-and-swipe navigation and customizable live tiles. Furthermore, users can get personalized information for their day and the week ahead across multiple locations.
“Our redesigned iPhone app, now in its third generation, sports a new look, slide-side navigation, customizable live tiles and a slew of new features,” said Amena Ali, chief marketing officer of Weatherbug, Germantown, MD.
“Our goal was to give users easier and faster access to personalized information for the day and week across multiple locations from the rich trove of data from our weather and lightning sensor network, the largest in the world,” she said. “New features include access to user photos, exclusive live camera views, and a safety-oriented tool just in time for springtime lightning season called Spark lightning alerts.
“Using lightning strike data that’s only available through our exclusive total lightning network, Spark is a unique feature that delivers lightning strike information directly to your iPhone using your GPS location. You can also get lightning proximity data for your favorite locations where loved ones live, or on the spot where your kids might be playing outside or where you are headed to golf and run.”
The new WeatherBug iPhone app features enhanced interactive maps that include multiple layers for radar, humidity, air pressure and satellite images.
Users are able to view the most current conditions, get one-touch access to pinpoint visual forecasts and see live tiles for radar, exclusive live camera images, photos and pollen counts.
Additionally, users can customize the app’s background themes to suit their mood, change the navigation tiles and check out the new content sections for your game day, family and fitness forecasts to get the information they need.
The app also refreshes data every two seconds to deliver current information from 10,000 neighborhood-level weather sensors.
“Our apps have continued to evolve, and along the way we’ve strived to listen to our users and consider their feedback when planning,” Ms. Ali said. “We’ve made WeatherBug for iPhone more personal and customizable, enhanced the maps and overlays, and improved the overall look and feel.
“Anyone with WeatherBug – the ad-supported version – or WeatherBug Elite – the ad-free version –currently on their iPhone will be automatically updated,” she said. “We actively promote our apps via numerous social channels and across our other properties, including our Web site.
“Plus, we have a large base of broadcast partners, which helps boost our name recognition. On a marketing front, we’ve added content sections within our iPhone for family, fitness and game day forecasts and these have gotten a very positive response from our user community.”
In addition to the iPhone app, WeatherBug also has mobile apps for iPad, Android, Windows Phone devices and a mobile-optimized site.
It is a good idea for marketers to continually update their mobile apps and sites to keep users on their toes and bolster engagement.
“Consumers are migrating to mobile faster than anticipated – while it was once called the third screen, mobile has quickly risen to become our primary method for going online,” Ms. Ali said. “As the operator of the world’s largest weather network, we’ve focused on having our WeatherBug apps deliver relevant, neighborhood-level information to users in a way that’s visually compelling and highly informative at the same time.
“WeatherBug users run the gamut, from true weather aficionados who want lots of detailed weather data to more casual users who want a quick at-a-glance forecast before they head out in the morning,” she said.
“Perhaps our biggest driving influence is informing WeatherBug users to approaching severe weather as fast as possible with our own Dangerous Thunderstorm Alerts that can alert to dangerous weather 50 percent faster than other apps. As always, users get National Weather Service alerts, so as weather continues to get more unpredictable.”
Rimma Kats is associate editor on Mobile Marketer, New York
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