iPhone Life magazine

Top 5 Weather Tracking & Alert Apps for iPhone that can Save Your Life

The tornadoes sweeping across the Texas plains and hitting Oklahoma mid-May reminded us that when a natural disaster rips through a community, the situation can turn deadly. But if you have an inkling of where and when severe weather is going to hit, you have a chance to take safety measures to protect yourself and your loved ones.

The App Store is flooded with all kinds of weather apps, but ones that only tell you the temperature are of no use in an emergency. To stay safe, you need apps that can give you early warnings about extreme conditions in your specific location. We have rounded up five of the best apps, which taken together can help smartphone users get a head start in case of severe weather.

1. Tornado (Free) by American Red Cross

During the last decade, several devastating tornadoes have lashed the shores and plains of America. If you live in a location affected by storms, Tornado by American Red Cross is a good free app to download. The best part of this app is that is does more than just send alerts about the weather conditions – it has quizzes that help you know more about how you can deal with tornadoes. It helps you find shelters after the storm, lets you make emergency plans in case you are hit by a storm, and has loads of information you can access offline.

The only hitch is it doesn't issue an audible warning if your iPhone is on silent or vibration mode. All the same, this app is worth the little space it takes in your iPhone.

2. Hurricane Pro ($2.99) by Kitty Code
This app is extremely useful for tracking storms and hurricanes. Its purpose is to track storms in detail and let you know about them. The app offers such detailed information that it seems tailored to scientists and professionals tracking hurricanes. Not only does the app alert you to severe or moderate storms, it even gives you five-day forecasts, radar info, and news regarding the particular storm. If you are looking for a serious hurricane tracker, this is the best app for your iPhone (you also can go for Hurricane HD, which costs $1 more and has a more appealing interface).
 

3. AccuWeather - Weather for Life (Free)

This is a good weather app for an average iPhone user. It doesn't have too many bells and whistles, but it does three things really well: 

1. Automatically checks your location and updates weather conditions every 5 minutes (without being too intrusive);

2. Can be customized to focus on specific weather conditions;

3. Automatically and emphatically pushes serve weather notices without delay.

This means you will always be aware of any weather problems in your area. Other features like social sharing and contact location sharing allow you to track and share the weather condition in the location of your friends and relatives also. The free version will have some ads, but not too many. If you don't like them, you can get the paid version for $2.99.

4. Nixle (Free)

If you are not in U.S., then this app is not of much help, but if you are in America, this is one extremely helpful app. Severe weather conditions are not the only disasters that hit communities. Nixle allows you to choose any of 4600 government agencies in US – through the app you can receive alerts and warnings from any of them. Not only can you subscribe to local agencies, but you can subscribe to agencies around the country. Having this app in your iPhone and subscribing to the right agencies ensures that you receive any warning fast.

This is the best weather tracking and alert map money can buy. But it costs quite a bit of money. What sets this app apart from most of the other apps is that it tracks your precise location and bases the alerts on where you are (as opposed to the general area you are in). So, while other alert app may send you warning even if your are pretty far from the weather incident, this app will do so only if you are actually in danger.
Other useful tool is its “Follow Me” feature, alerting you to any danger in a particular area without having to add the location manually. You also can track the weather in five locations apart from your current location – so you can keep an eye on the weather in places your family or friend are living. Is the app worth the money? That's for you to decide – its services are more reliable and powerful, but free apps do offer the same services.
In conclusion, I would like to stress the importance of being ready for emergencies. These apps can give you a few extra minutes or hours to face severe weather.
Email icon
Want more? Get our weekly newsletter:
Carlos Wilson's picture
Carlos works for MyFirstMobileApp.com, a leading Mobile Application Development Company providing custom mobile app solutions for various platforms like iPhone, iPad, Android, and Windows phone. He is a water person, loves underwater diving, and also enjoys reading science journals. You can follow him on Google+, Twitter, and Facebook.