Last year, your iPhone’s Weather app got some great features, but with the latest iOS version, it gets even better.
Apple’s Weather app has been around since the very beginning. In 2007, it provided little information, consisting mainly of the seven-day forecast with highs and lows. Today it’s a powerhouse with many of the features of DarkSky that Apple adopted in 2020, including detailed weather forecasts, radar maps, severe weather alerts, precipitation alerts, and much more.
With iOS 17, Apple continues to make the Weather app competitive with all third-party weather apps and services by adding a slew of new features, including things like historical data, moon-related information, more precipitation details, and a pretty useful new map, to just to name a few. And all of these features also come with iPadOS 17, one year after the introduction of the Weather app for iPad.
The stable releases of iOS 17/iPadOS 17 aren’t expected until the fall, but you can try these new Weather app features on iOS 17 Beta or iPadOS 17 Beta first.
1. Yesterday’s weather
One of the best changes to the Weather app came with iOS 16, where you can tap the forecast to see rich data and graphs for the 10-day forecast. Apple makes this view even better in iOS 17 with the ability to view yesterday’s weather.
The new feature lets you know the actual conditions from the previous day, such as how much rain you really got at the location or how many feet of snow fell. So you no longer need to use a third-party app or visit a weather website for historical data from the previous day.
Just tap today’s forecast or the 10-day forecast for the city of your choice and select the previous day from the top calendar view. The wording will change to indicate that it’s historical data, and you’ll be able to see most of yesterday’s stats, except for things like air quality.
2. View terms and conditions
On iOS 17, the “Temperature” section of the 10-day forecast has been renamed to “Terms” and includes additional information. You will still see the temperature graph with the highs and lows and the text-based forecast (for the current day) or the daily summary (for future days). But there is also a new graph that shows the probability of precipitation (see #3 below), and the current day also provides a daily comparison (see #4 below) of the high and low temperatures with the previous day.
3. Chance of precipitation
While the detailed forecast view has a category specific to precipitation, the graph only shows the amount of rain, sleet, or snow for each hour of the day. In the new Conditions view, there is now a Chance of Precipitation graph that shows the probability of precipitation as a percentage, and you can drag your finger across the timeline to see the actual probability for each hour.
4. Daily Comparisons
Tapping today’s forecast or 10-day forecast for a city will also bring up a new section for most stats called Daily Comparison. It is only available for the current day and not for future days, and it compares the current forecast with yesterday’s weather, visually represented as a bar chart with a short description.
There’s a new Averages tile in the main view of each city that shows you today’s highest temperature and the average high temperature from the last 30 days, then shows you the positive or negative difference.
Tap the tile to see a 24-hour graph showing each hour’s temperature for today as opposed to the normal temperature range over the last 30 days. A summary gives you a quick overview of the average, and there’s also information about normal ranges and averages. And there’s a Monthly Averages section to show the highs and lows of each month from January to December.
Switch the tab at the top to Precipitation and you’ll see similar data; only the graph shows the value of 30 days instead of 24 hours. So you can see the actual and average rainfall/snowfall of each day. There’s also the Monthly Averages section and information about average precipitation, such as how snow is factored into the numbers.
6. Detailed view of the moon phase
Apple’s Weather app also now offers a beautiful new moon phase view for each city. It is available as a new tile and shows the current moon phase, percentage of illumination, moonrise/set time, and the number of days until the next full moon.
Tap the tile to open a new modal view with a moon timeline that you can scrub through to change the stats at two-hour intervals for the current, previous, and next month. The image of the moon is animated to show its phases, and the data points for illumination, moonset, moonrise, next full moon, and distance from the current location also change along the timeline.
Below that, a calendar shows the moon phases of three months and each month’s full and new moons. There are also explanations for lighting and lunar distance if you need them.
7. Wind Maps
Wind speeds can be critical for many people who engage in a variety of outdoor activities, from working to camping or sailing. On iOS 17, the Weather app can show you a wind map, not just current wind speed stats.
To view the new wind maps, tap the map icon below the forecast for any city, then tap the layers icon and choose ‘Wind’. You see the wind movement patterns and predicted speeds over 12 hours, but you can’t limit the playhead to the next hour like you can with precipitation.
To quickly switch between cities, tap the list icon to choose a different location; the list also shows the current wind speed and gust speed with the wind direction.
8. Change units of measurement
In previous versions of the Weather app, you could only toggle between displaying Fahrenheit (ºF) and Celsius (ºC) temperature readings. All other units were based on your iPhone’s default location in Settings -> General -> Language & Region -> Measurement System. With iOS 17, Apple is introducing more units of measurement for each metric, and you can change them per metric directly in Weather.
To choose the units for temperature, wind, precipitation, pressure, and distance, tap the list icon in the bottom toolbar, click the ellipsis (•••), choose “Units,” then choose the metric and the unit type. To revert to the default units for your region, select “Restore Defaults”.
You can also easily change the units on the spot from the detailed forecast view for each city. You’ll see the option at the bottom of the page for each applicable metric. These are the available options:
- Conditions: Celsius (ºC), Fahrenheit (ºF), or use system setting
- Wind: miles per hour (mph), kilometers per hour (km/h), meters per second (m/s), Beaufort (bft), or knots (kn)
- Precipitation: inch (in) or millimeter (mm)
- Feels like: Celsius (ºC), Fahrenheit (ºF), or use system setting
- Visibility: mile (mi) or kilometer (km)
- Busy: inches of mercury (inHg), millibars (mbar), millimeters of mercury (mmHg), hectopascals (hPa), or kilopascals (kPa)
As in previous versions of iOS, navigating to Settings -> Weather still gives you the option to change the temperature unit, but a new “Use system setting” option has been added. You can also change the temperature unit via Settings -> General -> Language & Region -> Temperature.
9. The Beaufort scale for wind
The wind stat in the detailed 10-day forecast view now has a Beaufort scale that you can use to visualize the wind and its effects. Apple notes in its description of this feature that “the Beaufort scale can make it easier to understand how windy it will feel or how much of an effect the wind might have.” As you adjust the unit options in this view, the scale updates to reflect those changes.
10. Back in standby mode
Apple’s new standby feature in iOS 17 can display widgets on your screen when your iPhone sleeps in landscape orientation while charging on a stand. It works for any iPhone model, but only the iPhone 14 Pro and 14 Pro Max support standby mode. A new Weather app widget lets you see current conditions, temperature, and highs and lows for the day at a glance.
11. More weather symbols
SF Symbols 5, Apple’s latest version of its iconography collection for developers, which accelerates prototyping and embeds images in iOS, macOS, tvOS, and watchOS applications, includes 26 new weather-related images, including:
- sun.rain filling
- sun.rain circle
- sun.snow filling
- sun.snow circle
- moon.dust circle
In addition to being available to third-party developers, these new graphics are used by Apple itself in the Weather app on iOS 17 and other parts of the system.
12. Other weather app changes
- The lines on the charts for the current day’s statistics are broken for previous times, further indicating that they are historical data, not current or future conditions.
- “My Location” is now prominently displayed above the city name when viewing the current location.
- The Air Quality tile on the main view of each city has been rearranged so that the colored AQI line appears between the index number and the text instead of below the text.
- The wind tile on the main view of each city is now larger with more information. The wind speed has been removed from the compass and now also shows the wind gust speed, and the compass now shows the wind direction for clarity.
- The iPad finally got the Weather app with iPadOS 16, but it didn’t get iOS 16’s new customizable lock screen at the same time. But iPadOS 17 fixes that, and you can now add Weather’s Lock Screen widgets to all of your Lock Screens.
- A new “About Weather & Privacy” link is available from Settings -> Weather.
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