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Weather Review

New Weather Palm OS Software for Treo and Centro Delivers Rich Graphics, Detailed 1 to 14 Days Weather Forecasts & Weather-Guard Keyguard Functionality

Best Palm Weather Software for Centro & TreoAs I pointed out a couple of days ago in the Top 10 Treo & Centro Software there is a new application simply and aptly called Weather that adds one of the richest set of graphics for this type of software that I have come across in a while and which has not suprisingly rapidly shot to the bestseller list.

Until now my favourite Palm weather software had been Handy Weather (see my review) which had pretty much everything that I needed – a rich graphic experience and the benefit of detailed views and multiple cities – but it was lacking the rather important information about current weather conditions.

 Weather software for Centro & Treo Weather software for Centro & Treo

The new Weather application for its part thankfully provides detailed Current conditions (screenshots above) and much more.  Current weather information is updated every 15 minutes on the servers and can be quickly updated on your smartphone either manually (using the on-screen button or “U” key shortcut) or at predefined times in the Menu (for example every 3 hours).

This main Current weather forecast screen provides you with (from top to bottom): full date and time, city and country, temperature, “real feel”, pressure, text weather description, wind direction and speed, humidity, dew point and visibility.  Additionally, using your 5Way Up/Down will quickly cycle through your selected cities while Left/Right will take you to the next weather view below.

 Weather - 48 Hours View Weather - Detailed View

The next 48 Hours weather forecast screen (above left) – which is updated on servers every 6 hours – provides you with detailed Morning, Afternoon, Evening and Night weather information that includes Precipitation Probability, Temperature and Forecast.  You can use your Up/Down to cycle through the various periods and press Center button to view more detail (above right).

 Weather - 7 Days View Weather - 14 Days View

Both the 7 Days and 14 Days screens (above left and right respectively) provide you with the same level of detailed weather information with the first offering Precipitation, Forecast and Temperature range while the second gives you just Temperature and Forecast.

Weather - Settings Weather - Cities

Finally, the settings Menu (above) allows you to: add as many worldwide cities as you like; choose your preferred units (Metric or Standard), time and date formats; wireless data connection settings; select a background color or image of your choice; set your update frequency including an advanced scheduler; set Hot-Keys shortcuts; and finally also enable a very attractive 1 Day or 7 Days Keyguard option (screenshots below).

Weather - Keyguard 1 Day Weather - Keyguard 7 Days

It’s still surprising to see how few developers in general choose to graphically enrich their applications and thus enhance the overall customer experience.  This new Weather software is one of the welcome exceptions – it’s not only extremely pleasing to interact with on a daily basis but also happens to offer excellent features and functionality.  I have to admit that it makes my day to see applications like this released for your Treo or Centro.

Treonauts are always full of sunshine

Posted by Andrew on July 24, 2008 at 11:04 AM

Treo Software | Weather

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by Rick | Jul 24, 2008 1:20:51 PM

This software is awesome, EXCEPT, it doesn't have radar maps. If it included these, it would be perfect. When storms are coming, I need a radar map.

by Andrew | Jul 24, 2008 7:51:30 PM

Rick - I can't disagree with you that radar maps would be a nice bonus here but to be honest I personally don't really need it. This is why for me at least Weather gets to be close to perfect.

Cheers, A.

by ROBIN | Jul 26, 2008 11:08:44 AM

Definitely needs radar maps. I go to wunderground.com just about every day for them but if this software had maps I'd buy it in a heartbeat.

by Stu | Jul 28, 2008 11:50:04 AM

I noticed you didn't mention the beta test debacle, where Deluxeware staff promised that this would remain freeware, and then once released became shareware. Nonetheless, it looks like a good product.

by random9q | Jul 28, 2008 10:12:02 PM


Beautiful screenshots. Lovely program. Reminds me a bit of Handmark Express. Both programs I really *want* to love, but don't quite, because of missing functionality.

As websites like Accuweather.com, Weather.com, and google.com, etc., have become more mobile-browser-aware and done a much better job at implementing their offerings I find that I'm having a much easier time explaining to people what a fun toy a smartphone can be out-of-the-box. Without extra software to purchase. I really *want* to like Handmark Express, but I find that not pretty much everything I would want to do with it I do on Blazer, the web is finally up to snuff for it. And I also find that my penchant for seeking out specialized forms of news (like your blog) just don't really fit within Handmark Express's content offerings. Similarly, the weather around here is quite hit-or-miss, very literally, and radar is a necessary part of the forecast about an hour before the storm arrives. It is a lot of places. And on Accuweather.com I can get vivid radar. Animated. Plus access to any special weather-service-issued advisories and warnings, which is actually crucial in my morning duties at the office -- oddly enough -- even though I'm a programmer.

I'm certainly not going to argue that Weather oughtn't be Editor's Choice. Your the editor of your blog. It's your favorite. Period.

I'm also not asserting that browser apps will take over. They won't. Steve Jobs' assertions a year ago notwithstanding. (It didn't withstand even casual scrutiny, that's why people unlocked their iPhones and eventually Apple capitulated and decided to turn it into another business opportunity. Sort of like the game console market, developers get to ante up before they're an officially available product. Whee. But that's another debate.) There will always be apps that are better placed on the device -- for reasons of greater speed and/or greater feature offerings. I guess Weather wins in the UI category. (Not really speed either, not when I'm getting good reception, though if it had a prefetch every quarter hour it might be faster in places where reception was poor.) But lately I'm on a form over function kick, because I've discovered "my ol' 700p" is a lot more stable when I whittle down to just those apps which concentrate on functions over presentation.

Anyhow, ... You going to get around to doing that review of the 800w's software enhancements like you mentioned in the 800w hardware review? That was in two parts, right? I've actually been looking forward to finding out what Palm's latest spin on making WinMo a bit more friendly was. They usually have a dozen or so obvious-IN-HINDSIGHT ideas that other companies kick themselves for not having implemented, so I really wanted to see what they did with the latest we're-really-trying-now offering.


I'm somehow suspecting that they might've had an adware model in mind for the software (like Splash Data's RSS reader) and mightn't have been able to get advertisers to sign on or users to keep the software installed (or enough of a quantity of both). Maybe. I can't proove a damned thing, though, I just have a hunch. If that failed, well... They probably had to figure out how to pay some contracted developer(s) / fourth-party licenses they used as components / and/or server-hosting somehow. At least it went shareware instead of commercial, and you can be grateful for try-before-you-buy nag-screens instead of I-want-my-money-back nag-calls. I'd rather be slightly nagged to register until I make a final decision than nag for a refund any day.

Meanwhile, the moral of the story is: don't _promise_ free if you can't _guarantee_ you'll _deliver_ free. Makes for great resentment among your fan base. Don't kick 'em too hard over it, though. It might've been a debacle on their end, too, and someone else might've breached contract on them as well. You always imagine that when you've got a signed contract you can offer a guarantee based on it... Not always the case...

by random9q | Jul 28, 2008 10:33:03 PM


PS-- Despite everything I said, I have add that this...

"It’s still surprising to see how few developers in general choose to graphically enrich their applications and thus enhance the overall customer experience."

That's a great observation. I think it might be because so few developers are also themselves UI artists. (Or, maybe, decide they can't afford the services of one more business partner to pretty up their app.) Even if I'm trying to pare down on the number of items which make my Treo prettier because I'm having difficulty with making it stable enough I stay patient with it. The built-in World Clock, for instance, looks kinda awful. (Thus the myriad of replacements others have offered.)

by Mark H | Aug 1, 2008 6:08:54 AM

First, what is 'real feel' atmospheric pressure? Although people experience a variety of symptoms related to changing air pressure, for example, sinus pain and joint pain, any given atmospheric pressure has no perceptible sensation associated with it.

I have difficulty with three features of this program.

First, as others have stated, the lack of weather radar graphics is a significant problem for many of us. Of course there are always those who prefer less detailed information such as a "maintenance required" light on the dashboard of our cars rather than temperature and other guages. Even in the driving environment, virtually all automobiles now have tachometers.

Second, requiring use of a rich UI at all times emphasizes appearance in a manner that reduces performance while providing no additional information. My Treo freezes all too often as it is. And, fast transmission rates are not always available to support such a data-hungry application.

Finally, it does not appear possible to save weather report information to allow quick review when not online, a welcome feature when I am frustrated by "not available" messages upon repeated attempts to reach the network.

I can only hope that the developers will move toward allowing users to select implementation of this program with less processor-intensive visuals for situations where resources are relatively scarce.

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