Are Weather Apps Accurate?

I’m often asked if weather apps are accurate. Yes and no. Most of the time they will get you in the ballpark of what the weather will be. But it’s important to know their limitations. The forecasts that appear on weather apps are almost always completely generated by computers – with no human interaction. So they will have some biases (too cold or too hot, too wet or too dry, etc.) based on whatever computer model is used. And weather apps have a tough time dealing with rapidly changing weather – like severe thunderstorms, or localized heavy rain, etc. Dr. Marshall Shepherd, a professor of Atmospheric Science at the University of Georgia says the following.

“Recently, Georgia was experiencing pretty significant rainfall and flooding. A person at my University said, “my App says this is going to stop by this afternoon.” I pulled up the NOAA HRRR weather model and the current radar. Both indicated that there was no way that was going to happen. My advice is simply to use your App responsibly but not as a rubber stamp.”

That’s good advice.

Categories: Weather Blog