How to get a lock-screen weather forecast every morning

By

Watch out! Here comes some weather
Watch out! Here comes some weather
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

How would you like to have the day’s weather forecast show up on your iPhone or iPad’s lock screen every morning? Every morning, after a peaceful alarm rouses you gently from your slumber, you can look at your iPhone and see how the day’s weather will unfold. And this is all built-in, no third-party apps or hacks required. You just have to know how to switch on lock screen weather.

iOS 12’s built-in lock screen weather forecast

This is a pretty simple how-to, because it requires little more than updating to iOS 12, using Bedtime, and making sure that you don’t have certain deep-level settings switched off. And the feature is so great that you’re going to love it. Take a look:

Wake up to this beautiful sight every morning.
Wake up to this beautiful sight every morning.
Photo: Cult of Mac

The odd part is that this is a feature of iOS 12’s Bedtime. If you’re using Bedtime, which is a sleep-tracking and alarm feature built into the Clock app, then you’ll see this forecast appear automatically. To turn on Bedtime, follow along with our Bedtime how-to article, which explains everything.

The tl;dr version is that Bedtime lets you set a time you want to go to bed, and a time you want to wake up. It’s a lot like a regular alarm, only it also reminds you to go to bed, and it has a whole lot of custom alarms designed to ease you into wakefulness, instead of jarring you from sleep. I like the sound little birdies to wake me up.

Another feature of Bedtime is that you can use it to enable iOS 12’s amazing Do Not Disturb at Bedtime feature, which surpasses all alerts while you’re in bed, even keeping them off the lock-screen.

Part of the whole Bedtime routine is that it will display the weather forecast on your lock screen every morning. It will appear after your “alarm” has woken you, and before you unlock and use the iPhone for the first time. You cannot view this forecast at any other time of day (without changing your bedtimes in the app, at least), and you can’t make it reappear once you have unlocked the iPhone and started your day. So, make sure you pay attention when you see this screen, because it’s not sticking around.

What if the weather doesn’t appear on your lock screen?

When I first started testing the iOS 12 beta, I noticed that the weather showed up on my iPad, but not on my iPhone. After some digging, I found that my iPhone had the location services for the built-in weather app set to While Using App. This was preventing the iPhone from updating the weather in the background so it didn’t display it on the lock screen.

The weather needs unfettered location access to update in the background.
The weather needs unfettered location access to update in the background.
Photo: Cult of Mac

If this is happening to you, go to Settings > Privacy > Locations Services, and scroll does to Weather. Tap it, and set Allow Location Access to Always. That should fix things, but you’ll have to wait until morning to see if it worked.

I like this feature. I have a regular weather app I can use dint the day, along with plenty of Today View widgets that let me check the weather at a glance. This one-time-only daily forecast is perfect for me, and a nice way to use the lock screen when Bedtime has surpassed all other alerts. Nice work, Apple.