Outside: A Fresh and Beautiful Take on Weather

Wouldn’t it be great if you didn’t have to get out bed, open the curtains and face the sunlight to see a beautiful depiction of the weather outside your house?

Outside allows you to do just that! It even goes a step further and brings push notifications and weather forecasting together in an intriguing fusion. Will the weather ever be the same again?

Getting Started

When you first open Outside you are presented with a closed window, which after short period of time and a quirky quip opens to reveal a beautifully designed depiction of the weather.

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Quirky Quips

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The basic weather view

The Interface

Outside is an app that bases its appeal on the design of its interface. There are many weather apps available in the App Store including a decent and functional one that comes as standard on every iPhone. Outside attempts to rise above the rest by delivering the most pleasing weather experience you can have indoors – and it succeeds!

Outside’s stylised presentation of the weather is just gorgeous! It’s also incredibly refreshing when compared to the standardised depictions of weather that have been used for decades.

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Another look at the weather view

The functionality of Outside’s interface is also very good – daily forecasts, detailed current weather information, and the five day forecast, are just a few finger swipes away! A swipe to the right reveals the five day forecast while a downwards swipe reveals interesting information about your selected day. It’s particularly nice that Outside gives you different details depending on the weather – it’s intuitive enough to know that you don’t require the expected rainfall or cloud cover information on a bright sunny day!

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Five day forecast

Forecasts

In addition to looking great Outside’s forecasts also tend to be reliable and so fulfil their most basic function. The daily forecasts are rarely inaccurate and the five day forecast is as trustworthy as any other I have used. Outside also presents many of the factors that influence the weather including:

  • UV Index
  • Humidity
  • Dew Point
  • Cloud Cover
  • Wind
  • Wind Chill
  • Amount of Rain
  • Max UV

At the top of the weather information window Outside gives you the times for Sunrise and Sunset!

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Forecast details

On Outside’s main weather window there is a small button in the top right-hand corner designed to look like location markers on a map – tapping this accesses the locations menu. For a weather forecast to be in any way useful it must be for a specific and this menu allows you to save and organise your favourite locations! You can set Outside to load up any specific place when it starts and then switch between them using this menu. Alternatively, Outside can use your current location and give you the weather forecast exactly where you are (although this increases the startup time).

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Managing locations

One of the things thats makes Outside stand out is how fully featured it is; using every piece of technology at its disposal from current location to push notifications!

Notifications

In addition to Outside’s successful attempt to move beyond standard weather imagery and capture something more it also brings something entirely new to the table – notifications! The principle behind Outside’s push notifications is that it’s actually very useful to be told specific things about the weather without even having to check. Outside will use the location you set and send you push notifications even when the app is closed! The alerts that are currently available include:

  • Rain
  • High UV
  • T-shirt
  • Cold
  • Snow
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Notifications

Most of Outside’s alerts are customisable – for example the Cold notification allows you to set a temperature below which you are notified. The app also allow you to set a time at which you are notified, it’s useful to know whether it’s T-shirt weather or going to rain around the time you leave the house!

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Setting up an alert

Final Thoughts

It must be said that Outside has admirable ambitions. To attempt to build on such a tried and tested format while simultaneously introducing innovative new ideas is a daunting task!

The design of the app is outstanding and makes you eager to see what they’ve done for each and every weather condition. It’s practical but detailed and as accurate as you can justifiably expect. While its new fusion of push notifications with the weather is interesting and not without its uses – more a really great design idea rather than a groundbreaking new feature.

Priced at $2.99 and coming with a free one month subscription to the notification service it’s worth a try – you might find you can’t live without being helped with your clothing choices! And if the notifications don’t grab you then be safe in the knowledge that the App itself is so well designed and gorgeous that it deserves it’s price tag.

Outside has reinvented the weather forecast and turned it into something beautiful!


Summary

Outside presents a fresh new take on the boring old weather app by presenting you with beautiful graphical representations of the weather throughout the day. Though the concept is simple there are also plenty of advanced features like extended forecasts and notifications.

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