Dark Sky weather app gets a complete redesign

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Some weather.
Some weather.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

Another day, another new weather app. Dark Sky was already a big favorite, thanks to its hyper-local forecasts that tell you when it will rain outside your door, down to the minute.

Well, the app just got updated to version 6.0. According to the Dark Sky developers, it’s a completely new app — an update in name only. Let’s take a look.

Dark Sky still means limited availability

First, Dark Sky is only available in the United States, the United Kingdom and Ireland. If you’re outside those territories, you can’t even download the app. Instead, you should check out my favorite weather app, Hello Weather, which features Dark Sky among its weather data sources.

Dark Sky 6.0

The most noticeable change in Dark Sky 6.0 is the new unified timeline, which gathers all the most important weather information on one screen. You can see current conditions, as well as forecasts for the next hour, day and week, all in one view.

Despite this, the main page isn’t too busy, although you do have to scroll to see all the views. The pedantic amongst us might wonder how scrolling up and down is any better than tapping through to separate tabs. My answer is, “I don’t know.”

The new views are a lot easier to read, though. For instance, the new version uses position to indicate temperature instead of forcing you to read numbers that are all lined up. Take a look:

The new Dark Sky weather view is waaaaay better.
The new view is waaaaay better.
Photo: Dark Sky

Much better, right? And to think, Dark Sky was once thought of as a super-clean, minimal app. The new one makes it look like, well, like last year’s iPhone.

Saved locations … finally

This will seem like a joke to people who have never tried Dark Sky, but until now, you’ve never been able to save locations and flip through them. Not only was Dark Sky only for folks in the U.S. and Britain, but it was for people who lived in the exact same city as their family, and never had to check the weather anywhere else.

Now that’s been fixed. That’s right, Dark Sky now lets you save locations — a feature available in pretty much every other weather app ever made.

Umbrella reminders

Dark Sky notifications have also been improved. You can get “umbrella reminders,” a “sunscreen reminder” (and other more-usual severe weather alerts), rain warnings and a daily summary. These look pretty great.

If it wasn’t for the regional limitations, I’d be all over Dark Sky. Its slick design really does make it easy to check and understand lots of weather info in a quick glance. As it is, I’ll stick with Hello Weather, which offers many of the same features and more.

Price: $3.99

Download: Dark Sky from the App Store (iOS)