Summer is here and many people want to know the temperature, humidity and other weather facts.
Basic weather apps like Yahoo! Weather or the Google weather reader may come installed on your smartphone, but the temperature and other weather readings they deliver may not be accurate for the user's actual location. It is likely warmer or cooler where the user is than what the weather app reports.
That's because those weather apps aren't actual thermometers and are getting their information from weather stations that could be miles away from the user's current location. In addition to being from a reporting station far away, the weather data may also be delayed in reaching the smartphone app, leading to additional inaccuracies. Hikers, campers, boaters and other mobile device users who need reliable weather information cannot count on unreliable weather reporting. When users are out in the wilderness or on the ocean, incorrect weather forecasting can be a matter of life or death.
Luckily, there are many handy weather gadgets for smartphones which allow users to easily determine the temperature and other important weather information on the go.
1. Robocat made a cool smartphone weather app called Thermodo. It's a small hardware thermometer that installs directly into the standard headphone jack on a smartphone and no adapter is required. Once installed, the Thermodo device instantly transmits the actual temperature it detects, whether the users is outside or inside and whether the phone is offline or online.
Thermodo is slightly bigger than a standard audio jack and extends about a quarter inch out from the device. It's a handy device for weather nuts and sells for $19.
2. The IR-blue is another cool new temperature accessory for smartphones. The IR-Blue is a thermal imaging camera that detects the temperatures of surfaces, people and other things. It was invented by Andy Rawson, who wanted to find cracks in his 100-year old house were letting in cold air in the winter months. The IR-Blue uses a 64-zone non-contact infrared sensor array to detect the temperature of what you are pointing your device at. It attaches to the back of your iPhone or Android phone. If you hold it out like a camera, the device can detect the temperature of spots in front of you. Warmer spots are highlighted in red while colder areas appear in blue.
The device is similar to devices used by heating and air conditioning workers to detect temperature from a distance and see whether a vent is blowing cool or warm air. It retails for $195.
3. The Netatmo NWS01-WW Personal Smartphone Weather Station is another great temperature accessory for smartphones. It is made for the iPhone weather station but is also compatible with Android 4.0 or higher devices. The product monitors and measures temperature, humidity, CO2 pressure, air quality and more.
The Netatmo gives users weather forecasts and real-time conditions to track on their smartphones. The product debuted at the Consumer Electronics Show this year and was an Innovations Design and Engineering Award Honoree. The device retails for $179.