The suddenly crowded design-focused weather app arena has a late entrant, but one that has a secret weapon to take on Yahoo and BBC Weather's slick combatants in the battle of the best iPhone apps. The intricately minimalist Now Next Later (opens in new tab) iOS app has been created by master of interactive design, Brendan Dawes (opens in new tab).
The twist is that rather than use the traditional weather icons, Now Next Later uses an abstract, cross-based particle system to show current conditions including rain, wind speed, clouds and snow, with the data provided by Weather Underground.
The background colour indicates the maximum temperature whilst text displays the high and low temperatures as well as a description for the conditions. The forecast covers the current conditions plus the next three days. Double-tapping on the screen will update the forecast.
Dawes explains the thinking behind the concept: "In the process of learning new things, I wanted to learn more about Geolocation on the iPhone as I'd never done any before. To do that I decided to make myself a simple weather app. As it developed I started to sketch out a few more ideas until eventually it became Now + Next + Later - a simple weather app that tells you the weather for your current location.
"Rather than use the usual weather icons I opted for a simple cross device as part of a particle system. This is used to give an abstract notion of clouds, complete with wind speed as well as being used to display rain - in various intensity - and snow.
"There's lots of feature rich weather apps on the app store as well as some beautiful minimalistic ones like Solar and Blue. But I built this for myself to learn new stuff and thought I might as well release it."
It takes talent to make the much-vaunted Yahoo Weather app suddenly look overcomplicated, but is Dawes' undoubtedly beautiful design just a tad too pared-back - or is this all you need from a weather app?
You can download Now Next Later (opens in new tab) from the App Store.