Quick Rant: The iPad’s Incredibly Vague Weather Widget

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iOS 7 weather widget

This one’s been a pet peeve of mine for as long as iOS 7 has been out. The “Today Summary” section of Notification Center looks quite clean, and I like how it opts to use text over a set of weather icons, but here’s where it can be plain stupid: it doesn’t always show the current temperature.

Sometimes the summary does show info like “a high of 6, a low of –3”, but other times it just shows vague information like “partly cloudy conditions with low visibility”. Unfortunately, the thing about low visibility is that it doesn’t tell me anything about how many layers I should wear before stepping out the door.

This wouldn’t be as bad if I could simply tap on the iPad’s weather report as I do on my iPhone 5S, but I can’t. The iPad doesn’t come bundled with a Weather app, and I can’t link the widget to open any of the excellent third-party weather services on the App Store. This means that the only way to quickly check the weather on an iPad is to use Siri, which displays the proper highs and lows throughout the day. That can work, but Siri has its own issues when it comes to reliablity (sometimes it takes mini vacations and doesn’t respond to anything).

This is one of those details in which the devil lives. It’s an oversight in Apple’s major move from iOS 6 to iOS 7, and it would be oh-so-easy to correct, if only Apple could catch onto it.

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