Apple acquires popular weather app Dark Sky

Posted:
in General Discussion edited March 2020
Dark Sky, a popular weather app for iOS, Android, and the web, has been purchased by Apple.

Screen captures from the existing iPhone version of Dark Sky
Screen captures from the existing iPhone version of Dark Sky


The announcement was made by Adam Grossman on Dark Sky's blog on Tuesday and reads,
Today we have some important and exciting news to share: Dark Sky has joined Apple.

Our goal has always been to provide the world with the best weather information possible, to help as many people as we can stay dry and safe, and to do so in a way that respects your privacy.

There is no better place to accomplish these goals than at Apple. We're thrilled to have the opportunity to reach far more people, with far more impact, than we ever could alone.
The post then goes on to discuss what will happen to the existing Dark Sky products. The iOS app will continue to be available for purchase in the App Store. The Android app, however, will shut down after July 1, 2020. Android subscribers who are still active will receive a refund.

The website will continue host weather forecasts, maps, and embeds until July 1, 2020. Afterward, it will remain active for API and iOS App customers only.

The API is no longer accepting new signups, but will continue to function for existing customers until the end of 2021.

The terms of the deal are not yet known. However, this may mean some changes to the Weather app are finally coming in a future release, likely during the iOS 14 cycle this fall.

In January of this year, Apple had obtained edge-based artificial intelligence startup Xnor.ai for $200 million. The move suggested the machine learning tools developed by the company may appear natively on iPhones and iPads in the future, with processing on-device instead of in the cloud.
watto_cobra
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 48
    Big fan of this app, but in Canada we have to rely on just the web interface...

    Hope this gets fully baked-in soon!
    StrangeDaysqwerty52neo-techwatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 48
    BeatsBeats Posts: 2,531member
    I wonder why? Is it more accurate or?

    Will Yahoo do anything right in the future?
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 48
    snow66snow66 Posts: 15member
    My favorite weather app.  When I was shopping around for a weather app that was very accurate over the next hour or so, Dark Sky was the most reliable.  When Dark Sky says it is going to rain about 40 minutes from now or the current rain is going to stop in 20 minutes it is usually right on.  Very valuable when deciding when to talk a walk outside.  Hopefully Apple will improve it's integration within iOS.
    StrangeDaysqwerty52flyingdpwatto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 48
    Eric_WVGGEric_WVGG Posts: 921member
    Beats said:
    I wonder why? Is it more accurate or?
    Normal weather apps will give you pretty-good predictions over 5-7 days.

    Dark Sky gives you very, almost frighteningly accurate predictions over about an hour. I use it during rainstorms to determine where there will be, like, a ten minute gap in rainfall to bicycle home. It's amazing.

    Take a closer look at that screenshot for Cape Canaveral, FL. That graph shows moderate rain for about twenty minutes, then a light drizzle, then no precipitation. Whenever that screenshot was taken, you can bet that's exactly how the next hour panned out.
    edited March 2020 SoliStrangeDaysqwerty52docno42neo-techRayz2016watto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 48
    cpsrocpsro Posts: 2,893member
    Love Dark Sky! I've read elsewhere Carrot Weather used its API and will be discontinued. Never been a fan of Carrot's subscription model, and hearing Carrot used the Dark Sky API, I'm even less of a fan.
    edited March 2020 watto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 48
    blastdoorblastdoor Posts: 2,437member
    Wow, that's a nifty acquisition! I look forward to seeing what Apple does with it. 

    A tangentially related idea popped into my mind just now... 

    I wonder if Apple might one day\ deploy a fleet of autonomous drones to collect both better, more localized weather data and to provide enhanced GPS-like functionality for the Apple ecosystem. That could be cool... 
    leavingthebiggwatto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 48
    Dark Sky is a great app!  I hope the developers did well by this and will continue to work with Apple to improve weather forecasting for all.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 48
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 9,462member
    Other sites are reporting the Android version will be shut down.
    cornchipwatto_cobra
  • Reply 9 of 48
    sphericspheric Posts: 2,093member
    Oh yeah! I SO hope they'll find a way to make it work in mainland Europe.

    I've really been wanting this app ever since I got an Apple Watch, but they never got a hold on appropriate data sources over here. 

    I'm hoping it was a matter of lack of licensing clout and sheer disinterest, rather than lack of actual data available. If so, Apple should be able to fix that.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 10 of 48
    mpantonempantone Posts: 1,609member
    lkrupp said:
    Other sites are reporting the Android version will be shut down.
    We know. The Dark Sky blog entry explicitly mentioned it.
    edited March 2020 cornchipredgeminipa
  • Reply 11 of 48
    razorpitrazorpit Posts: 1,796member
    I love Weather Line. So much in fact I recently paid a hefty sum for a lifetime subscription. Considering Apple's track record with established apps/services I guess I should consider myself lucky it wasn't Weather Line that was purchased.  :D
  • Reply 12 of 48
    markbyrnmarkbyrn Posts: 646member
    Should see all the recent review on the Google Play Store - very amusing  :D
    cornchiprazorpitwatto_cobra
  • Reply 13 of 48
    Is it only available in the US? It’s not available in Australia. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 14 of 48
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 11,574member
    blastdoor said:
    I wonder if Apple might one day\ deploy a fleet of autonomous drones to collect both better, more localized weather data and to provide enhanced GPS-like functionality for the Apple ecosystem. That could be cool... 
    I would bet we never see that happening. It would be incredibly complex and expensive and providing weather reports just isn't core business, especially when they can subscribe to data feeds to give the weather.
    cornchipwatto_cobra
  • Reply 15 of 48
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 11,574member
    Definitely a fan of Dark Sky. Only complaint is their Watch complication has always been finicky for me.
    cornchipwatto_cobra
  • Reply 16 of 48
    blastdoorblastdoor Posts: 2,437member
    blastdoor said:
    I wonder if Apple might one day\ deploy a fleet of autonomous drones to collect both better, more localized weather data and to provide enhanced GPS-like functionality for the Apple ecosystem. That could be cool... 
    I would bet we never see that happening. It would be incredibly complex and expensive and providing weather reports just isn't core business, especially when they can subscribe to data feeds to give the weather.
    Well, yeah... if you want to be all rational and stuff, I guess you're right :-) 

    But, everybody can access those data feeds... if Apple had *better* weather forecasts, that might be worth something. Especially if they could simultaneously use the same drones to enhance other services, like GPS/mapping. Maybe equip the drones with a high resolution camera to assess traffic conditions and other issues related to mapping. 

    Sure, it seems kind of "non-core", but so does Snoopy in Space ;-) 
    d_2cornchipwatto_cobra
  • Reply 17 of 48
    FolioFolio Posts: 698member
    If Dark Sky app always had perfect data, I'd use it exclusively, but yes it is my favorite weather apps. Maybe Apple can improve it so it can be my sole daily weather app. It gives granular snapshots to spinning globe views. It's probably compelling enough that if Google doesn't work fast, a subset of Androiders might follow Dark Sky and defect.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 18 of 48
    blastdoorblastdoor Posts: 2,437member
    Another random thought... Apple certainly knows which apps people use most and I'll bet Weather is right up there. So ensuring that iPhone users have the best possible weather app might be more "core" to their business than I would have thought prior to thinking about it. 
    jcs2305razorpitwatto_cobra
  • Reply 19 of 48
    dewmedewme Posts: 3,818member
    Woo hoo, I'm a big fan of Dark Sky. What's great about this is that Apple probably won't destroy Dark Sky by trying to suck revenue out of it with intrusive ads and other desperate schemes. I was a long time user of the Weather Underground app until late 2019 when the owners of it completely rearchitected in a most heinous fashion and completely destroyed the app. It's like they threw the source code into a cage full of monkeys and released whatever fell from the bottom of the cage two weeks later, monkey poo and all. I've never seen what was once a well regarded app go so bad so fast. Read the recent reviews. The good news however is that after sifting through several replacement weather app candidates, most of which require subscriptions, I found Dark Sky and I've been quite pleased with it. There are a few bugs in it related to location detection, but I'm sure Apple will make sure these issues are fixed.  
    StrangeDayswatto_cobra
  • Reply 20 of 48
    crowleycrowley Posts: 8,741member
    blastdoor said:

    I wonder if Apple might one day\ deploy a fleet of autonomous drones to collect both better, more localized weather data and to provide enhanced GPS-like functionality for the Apple ecosystem. That could be cool... 
    I hope not.  Dark Sky works with publicly available data sources, as does most weather reporting (I believe, there may be exceptions).  I'm sure Apple could add value, but if it means proprietary weather data and services then I think that's a net loss for us all.
    gregoriusm
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