While a handful of good weather apps do exist on Android, there are countless more on iOS that offer a range of diverse interfaces and experiences. After several weeks of testing, Carrot Weather is now cross-platform and bringing its iconic banter to Google’s mobile operating system in a near direct port.
Featured by Apple’s App Store, Carrot Weather and its family of apps — including a to-do, alarm, and fitness client — have been a presence on Apple’s platforms for several years now. The common thread, besides a high level of polish, is a sarcastic “artificial superintelligence” robot personality that is known for wit, humor, and amusing meanness.
This is best emphasized in the Weather client that delivers the forecast with live-updating remarks and dialogue about current events. In fact, you might find yourself just opening the app just for commentary with “6,000+ lines of hilarious spoken dialogue” touted.
On Android, the interface is essentially unchanged. The homescreen consists of three main sections. At the bottom is a day carousel and just above it is an hourly graph with the temperature and chance of precipitation. At the very top is a section that provides the weather conditions for that moment with additional stats like wind speed, humidity, UV Index, and more.
Active weather alerts are in the top-left corner, while users can conveniently save screenshots of forecasts and humor with a share button to the left of location search. An overflow menu in the top-right provides access to settings and a sign-up for the “Premium Club.” This yearly in-app purchase removes banner ads at the bottom of the screen and unlocks weather history, as well as two widgets that note the high/low with some banter.
Also accessible from this menu are the “Secret Locations” — a mini-game of sorts that involves finding various locations around the world based on hints. There are currently 42 with more continually being added.
In settings, “Character” preferences allow you to set Carrot’s Personality with options ranging from “Friendly” to “Snarky” to “Homicidal” and finally “Overkill (includes Profanity).” Users can also disable the speech synthesizer/sound effects and just read the sarcastic remarks. Given Carrot’s heavy political nature, users can also set six increments from Liberal, Conservative, Centrist, Libertarian, Communist, and Apolitical.
Besides the robotic personality, Carrot Weather also excels with its various design flourishes. In coming to Android, it 100% retains its iOS look, though in fairness it harkens more to the skuemorphic iOS of old than a modern design.
This might be one area of complaint for Android users who are increasingly use to clean Material Design and minimalistic stylings. However, one of the main conceits of Carrot Weather is an experience and its design very much plays into that. The app is particularly heavy on tiny 8-bit artwork and small details, as well as non-material colors.
Carrot’s backend is powered by the accurate Dark Sky with precise precipitation warnings. The app is out of Early Access after three months with version 1.0 now available on the Play Store for free. Premium Club comes with a three-day free trial and is $3.99 per year afterwards.
Weather clients are utilities and tools, with Carrot Weather handily checking off that basic requirement. However, this app in particular also doubles as an amusing game; injecting whimsy and a laugh into checking the hour-to-hour forecast.