YoWindow for iPhone ($0.99) is a super cute weather app that combines information with good looks into a handy little utility. I’ve been using it for about a week and, while it won’t satisfy hardcore weather junkies, those who simply want to know, “What’s it gonna be like?” should enjoy YoWindow.
This is going to be divisive. YoWindow’s main screen features an animation, complete with sound effects, that coincides with your local weather. For example, a sunny day generates a sunny scene. Rain, a downpour. The time of day is also represented, and you can watch as the sun and moon rise and set.
There are five animation themes to choose from: village, seaside, airport, oriental and sky (village is the default). Each animation has its own set of sound effects, and is drawn in a vector style.
Some will love it. Some will despise it. I got into the fun of the app, so I found the animations and sounds enjoyable.
Gallery: YoWindow for iPhone
The top half of the screen shows the current weather conditions as well as a seven-day forecast. Tap the current temperature reading for additional information (I’m calling this the “weather detail area” for the sake of this review), like wind speed and direction, humidity and pressure.
The first time you launch YoWindow, it will ask permission to note your location. I was impressed that it found my rinky-dink town of the first try. Most of these apps select a neighboring town, forcing me to go in and fix it.
After a brief bit of research (it pulls data from the National Weather Service), up pops the display. The forecast is at the very top of the screen. Tap any one to jump right to it. Next is the timeline, which is very cool.
Tap and hold anywhere on the screen, and then slide your finger left or right. As you do, you scrub the timeline and the appropriate conditions — past, present or future — are reflected in the animation and weather detail area. You can even scrub through the conditions history of upcoming days. It’s a fun, clever way to present a weather forecast.
Finally, a single tap on the screen hides the overlay information and lets you enjoy the animation.
As I said, some will be put off by the animated scenes and lack of real-time satellite maps. Others who like a bit of fun and a simple way to know if they need sunblock or an umbrella will enjoy this app. I did.