Since the weather has been fluctuating from snow to rain, from below-freezing to spring-like temperatures, now is a good time to review apps that track the weather. AOPA members are very passionate about their weather apps, and below are the top five requests I’ve received. These are not endorsements of any app.
- WSI Pilotbrief Optima (free in iTunes) —This iPad app allows users access to weather and notam information when planning a flight. Features include high-definition weather layers, radar, satellite infrared, Vertically Integrated Liquid (VIL), and EchoTop mosaics; graphic METARs; and 10-day planning forecasts.
- Aviation Weather by GADsoftware ($4.99 in Google Play) —This smartphone app shows maps with all reporting stations listed, and coded by VFR/IFR conditions, according to an AOPA member. The default map in the 30-day trial version is of the Northeast centered on Boston, but you can add locations.
- AccuWeather (basic version free on iTunes and Google Play) —Members rave about this smartphone and tablet app for its push notifications for severe weather alerts, precise weather maps, forecasts for 2.7 million locations around the world, and the ability to save forecasts for an unlimited number of locations.
- MyRadar Weather Radar (basic version free in iTunes and Google Play) —This smartphone and tablet app displays animated weather radar at a current location. For $1.99, the pro version removes all ads. For $2.99, the app will include hurricane coverage. It also offers weather warnings and alerts.
- AeroWeather ( Lite version, free; Pro version, $3.99 in iTunes) —The lite version of this iPhone/iPad app provides raw and decoded METAR/TAF data, and allows users to search stations from a built-in database or find them based on location. The weather comes from the National Weather Service database.
What apps do you use to search for the best fuel prices? Please send them my way here. Feel free to send along any other pilot/aviation apps you can’t live without. Thanks to everyone who continues to pass along their Google Play and iTunes app recommendations. The complete list of apps I’ve reviewed since October 2012 is in AOPA’s online archive.