Following Apple’s purchase and subsequent murder of Dark Sky for Android, the best weather app on the platform, AccuWeather stepped up to fill the gap with hyperlocal forecasts and a pleasant overall design. Now, AccuWeather has some good news and some bad news. AccuWeather has a new option to get hyperlocal weather notifications, but it’s also locked a basic feature behind a paywall.

Starting with the good news. AccuWeather has made a new “Premium+” subscription that costs $19.99/year. The new subscription removes ads from the app, and also enables “AccuWeather Alerts.” These alerts enable the AccuWeather app to send notifications regarding the weather conditions around you.

If that sounds familiar, it was one of the best features of Dark Sky, where the app would deliver alerts in the minutes leading up to a storm, rain, or snow. It’s unclear if AccuWeather’s notifications will do exactly the same thing, but the app describes these weather alerts as being able to provide “actionable insights.”

Introducing our new Premium+ subscription, launching with Accuweather Alerts:

  • Clear & Concise: Our expert meteorologists analyze dangerous weather and provide actionable insights.
  • Actionable weather warnings: They complement government warnings describing potential threats for better decision-making.
  • Hyperlocal: Localized alerts describe how threatening weather may impact your neighborhood.

Beyond those notifications, AccuWeather teases that the Premium+ subscription will deliver additional app customization, widgets, and other features in time. The existing Premium subscription is still available starting at just $1.

The unfortunate news, though, is that AccuWeather has also taken this opportunity to lock a basic feature behind a paywall. The latest AccuWeather for Android updates have limited the long-available persistent notification to no longer show the temperature in Android’s status bar. Now, the AccuWeather icon simply appears in that spot. However, if you pay for Premium+, the feature is still available.

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Ben Schoon

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