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Bing Weather review: Effortless weather reports with an elegant design

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Bing Weather is part of a suite of four Bing apps for Windows Phone meant to make daily news, weather, sports, and finance information easy to find and consume. In keeping with the other apps' designs, Bing Weather is simple, clean, and exceedingly easy to use.

Bing Weather (Windows Phone)
8.2

Bing Weather

The Good

<b>Bing Weather's</b> no-frills, attractive design gives you just enough weather details without overcrowding the app with unnecessary features.

The Bad

You can’t get to extended daily forecast details from the home screen, and the app can be slow when swiping through each page.

The Bottom Line

Bing Weather is well worth the free download for its pretty, dead-simple design and comprehensive weather reports.

I don't ask for much in a weather app: I just want the current conditions, the upcoming forecast, and maybe a few weather maps. Bing Weather delivers all those features, no more, no less, wrapped up in a colorful design.

Design
Compared with The Weather Channel app on Windows Phone, which comes preinstalled on most Lumia handsets and includes several social features, Bing Weather is a no-nonsense basic weather app that delivers simple daily weather conditions and extended forecasts.

A simple and striking weather app (pictures)

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The app's design is colorful, clean, and even beautiful in places. The main screen features a full-screen background that notes the current weather condition -- clouds for overcast conditions, sun rays when it's clear, and so on. Some backgrounds are more exciting than others, but they all add a nice touch.

The app's color scheme also changes based on the current weather conditions, with green for light rain, light blue for sun, and navy blue for overcast, to name a few.

Bing Weather (Windows Phone)
The app's full-screen weather-related background and colorful design changes to match the current conditions. Screenshot by Sarah Mitroff/CNET

Weather forecasts
Bing Weather gets its data from three main weather sources: AccuWeather, Foreca, and WDT.

When you first open the app, it will use your phone's GPS to set a permanent home location based on your current location. If you split your time between two cities, or are preparing for an upcoming trip, you can add additional locations by tapping the globe icon at the bottom of the app.

The app's home screen only shows a recent local weather report, including current temperature, that day's highs and lows, forecasted conditions for day and night, plus other assorted weather stats such as humidity, visibility, and wind speed.

If you want even more information (such as sunrise and sunset times or chances for rain), you must swipe to the next screen in the app, which shows a 10-day forecast, and tap on today's date to load a page of extra weather stats. I wish that I could get to that information directly from the main page instead.

Bing Weather (Windows Phone)
Expanded daily weather details in the app. Screenshot by Sarah Mitroff/CNET

On that weather page, you'll also see historical weather details, such as the average high and low and average rainfall for that specific date. There's also the record high and low and the year that record was set, which, while not always useful, is neat to see.

The 10-day outlook tab (named daily in the app) gives you a quick glance at weather conditions over the next week and a half, with highs and lows and chances for precipitation. You can tap any date to get more details.

To the right of the 10-day forecast are the hourly forecasts. The daily and hourly pages look almost identical, so at first glance I couldn't tell the difference. Here you'll see the weather hour by hour for the next 24 hours.

The last page of the app shows a list of weather maps. Here there are both local and national maps for temperature, Doppler radar, and precipitation conditions, and national-only maps that show cloud cover and satellite images. Tap any map to open it in landscape mode and it will play on a loop to show the past and upcoming conditions.

Bing Weather (Windows Phone)
Bing Weather's regional Doppler radar map. Screenshot by Sarah Mitroff/CNET

My only gripe with Bing Weather is that the app takes the several seconds to load each weather page when you swipe through each one. It's most noticeable when swiping from the daily to hourly taps and the hourly to maps tabs.

Final thoughts
Bing Weather does a fantastic job of delivering location-specific weather conditions and forecasts. Its simple and colorful design makes it easy to quickly glance at the app or live tile to find what's happening outside, and see the upcoming weather forecasts.

Though it can be slow at times, Bing Weather's flawless design makes it a must-have for anyone who needs to know the weather at home or on-the-go.

Bing Weather (Windows Phone)
8.2

Bing Weather

Score Breakdown

Setup 9Features 8Interface 9Performance 8