Weather apps are plentiful in the iOS world; readers wouldn't believe the number of pitches for new weather apps that we get each and every week at TUAW. But when it comes to OS X weather apps, we just don't see that many. That's why Temps (US1.99 for OS X and $0.99 for the iOS companion app Temps mobile) is quite unique.
Temps for OS X
First, let's look at the OS X app. Once downloaded from the Mac App Store and launched, Temps resides in a nice, out of the way location -- your menu bar. You can set Temps up to display a number of items in the menu bar. I chose, for example, to have Temps show me a small icon that shows the type of weather (sunny, partly cloudy, rainy, etc...), the location, and temperature. Those who own a Netatmo personal weather station can see the outside and inside temperatures at a glance, and that's what got me interested in Temps in the first place.
If you're interested in seeing the weather in your favorite places around the world, Temps can rotate those readings into view every minute. There's a place to set up your favorite locations -- just type a few letters of the name into the search field, and then pick the correct one from the list of results. Clicking on the menu bar displays all of your favorites in a list; selecting just one of those items shows a detailed four-day forecast of temperatures and precipitation probability.
There's a selection of "modern" or "monochrome" (see below) interfaces for the results. I found that I preferred the modern interface a lot more. However, it would be nice to have a choice of other themes to select from depending on your current mood.
The "world clock" aspect of Temps is quite subtle -- you pretty much have to bring up the full four-day view of each city to be able to look at the local time. It would be nice to have the choice to put the local time in place of the temperature if that's more important to you.
Temps Mobile for iOS
Now about Temps mobile. As you'd expect, it's the iOS companion app to Temps. The desktop and mobile apps actually sync through iCloud, so any locations that you set up in preferences are immediately transferred to all devices that are running the app. However, if you have set up a Netatmo weather station to appear on your Mac, it inexplicably disappears on the mobile version. There is a Location Services button that adds your current location to the list in the iOS app; that's just not the same as getting weather info from your own station.
On an iPad, the app appears in landscape orientation, while it's in portrait mode on the iPhone. Orientation can't be switched on the iOS devices. There's also an unintentionally humorous internationalization error that shows up on the iOS version -- the app asks if you'd like to use iCloud for syncing, giving the choices of "Yes" and "Nein".
Wrapping it all up in a nice little package, I'd say that I feel quite happy with Temps on OS X, as it's unobtrusive, provides a great way to get weather information at a glance, and can be configured to display your Netatmo weather readings. However, Temps mobile on iOS just doesn't do anything for me, probably because there are so many competing apps that do a much better job of displaying weather on iPhone and iPad. For both apps, I'd like to see a variety of themes instead of the "basic black" background that's available today.
Temps requires OS X 10.8 or later and a 64-bit processor; Temps mobile is universal, requiring iOS 6.0 or later (optimized for iPhone 5).
- Key specs
- Form factor Tablet
- Operating system iOS (8)
- Screen size 9.7 inches
- Storage type Internal storage (16 GB, Flash)
- Maximum battery life Up to 10 hours
- Dimensions 9.4 x 6.6 x 0.24 in
- Weight 0.96 lb
- Announced 2014-10-16
Apple iPhone 6s