Weather Doodle more pretty than helpful

Spoiler alert! If you like pretty drawings of weather and don’t care about all those extra details on the TV forecast (like wind chill and storm direction or tornado watch) then it doesn’t get much prettier than Weather Doodle. If you like weather like traders watch the stock market, then Weather Doodle is about as useless as you can get.

Weather Doodle reminds me of the Miller Lite ads: “More pretty, less information.” It presents the weather with beautiful art and not much else. The App Store descriptor says its the number one app in 32 countries but it doesn’t say which countries (and I suspect the “r” may have been a type error).

It is only a dollar, (usually, sometimes it’s two dollars or free) and it’s every bit as pretty as it claims. And it does show the weather, kind of. And all over the world at that. But try as hard as I can to like it, I find myself slightly underwhelmed.

There are already so many weathers apps and weather sites out there that give just about every possible weather factoid and weather vector, complete with real time moving topography maps, that you may wonder why you could possibly want another. Tiny Mammal, the app’s developers, must have asked the same thing, and their answer was “cute art.”

Weather Doodle is more about pictures than weather. The graphics are stunning, the weather basic.

Weather Doodle delivers only the most basic weather data: conditions (sunny, cloudy, rainy), temperature, wind speed and direction and humidity. If that’s too much information you can turn off everything but the picture and temperature. You can, however, check ahead to the same information for the next week, or swipe to the left and see what it’s like in Milan or Rome or even Anchorage.

Oh, yes, Weather Doodle will also tell you whether it’s night or day by making the background daylight or moonlight. Just in case you can’t look out the window. The animations are done in the style of construction paper cutouts and are actually fun to look at the first two or three times you use the app.

But it isn’t like studying a Picasso or Cézanne. You can’t go back time and time again and find more than you saw before. The App Store shows additional sample artwork, but you have to pay extra for it. Currently Weather Doodle offers two additional art sets at one dollar apiece. I went ahead and downloaded one set, EuroCarta, and it was pleasant. I could look at it a little more often.

You can currently order two additional art sets to display the weather, a print block set and a colorful set resembling old maps in children’s books.

The animations do reflect the position of the sun and moon in the sky, and the EuroCarta set adds expressions to the sun’s face as it rises and sets. Unfortunately, the app has been out since December with no new art packs, so your choices may remain limited for a time.

You can add any city to your custom locations by zip code or city name and choose between the basic two weather details, and more complete four or five mentioned earlier. Beyond that, however, the ability to customize is limited to the art.

Perhaps the biggest drawback to Weather Doodle is the load time. It takes almost half a minute to load the animation graphics. Which means you can’t get a quick glance at the weather. You have to wait. Most people just want to get a quick glance, they don’t want to wait for a show.

The best I can say about Weather Doodle is that it’s cute, but I don’t know how many people will want to use it as their weather information source. Considering that you have to pay for additional artwork, I’m not sure this will be your app of choice either.

Jenny Manytoes rates Weather Doodle

Jenny Manytoes would take a nap next to Weather Doodle. It’s cute and endearing, but you can find better weather information elsewhere.

The Jenny Manytoes Rating System

Jenny Manytoes, our polydactyl cat

  • When Jenny makes biscuits on a product she thinks she’s in heaven.
  • When Jenny purrs over a product she’s very happy.
  • When Jenny naps next to a product it’s okay with her.
  • When Jenny bunches her tail she can live with a product, but she has higher expectations.
  • When Jenny leaves it in the litter box….I don’t think I need to explain this one.


About Phillip T Stephens

Phillip T. Stephens disappeared into the Bermuda Triangle twenty years before he was born, creating a time travel paradox so confusing it remains unspoken between physicists and sci-fi writers to this day. Follow @stephens_pt
This entry was posted in 3 Stars - nap, Utilities, weather and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

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