Forecast brings the Weather app to the Lock screen

Forecast iOS 7 1

I awoke this morning to blizzard conditions and cancelled classes, giving me the fitting opportunity to take a look at an exciting recently updated jailbreak tweak called Forecast for iPhone and iPod touch. I recommend you take a look too, as this is definitely one of the better packages available on Cydia.

Forecast replaces Slide to Unlock on the Lock screen with a widget on the bottom left that displays the current temperature and conditions, in addition to anticipated highs and lows for the day. For example, in the screenshot above, the current temperature is 34 ºF with mostly clear skies on a crisp February night. And that’s just the beginning of what this tweak has to offer…

When you swipe to the left on the Lock screen, Forecast adds a new page that displays a more detailed weather forecast without the need to unlock your device. The tweak acquires the weather forecast information, including the dynamic wallpapers, based off your current location or the first location set in the default Weather app. So, in essence, this tweak brings the Weather app to the Lock screen entirely.

Forecast, developed by dba Technologies, also displays animated Lock screen and Home screen wallpapers based on your current weather conditions, which just happens to be falling snow in my area. I found this feature very interesting, especially for the Home screen, since I’m a big fan of dynamic wallpapers and an even bigger fan of ones that serve a useful purpose.

In terms of data refresh, the animated wallpaper on both the Lock and Home screen did not change to reflect a change in my local weather. It being nighttime where I live, with snow showers, Forecast was still displaying a daytime wallpaper with a scattered snow showers condition. Despite both closing the Weather app and respringing my device, I could not resolve this problem. I’m not sure what the root cause could be.

Nevertheless, the animated wallpaper on the Home screen does not impact the performance of my iPhone, a testament to the hardware improvements that Apple has made to the smartphone over the years. The same experience would have been underwhelming at best on iOS 5 or earlier, when the original version of Forecast was released. But, if you wish, the animation is an option that can be disabled to prevent increased battery drainage.

There are a number of options to configure in the Settings app for this tweak, in fact, with toggles for showing the current weather, darkening the text and icons for the current weather, showing the forecast page, darkening the forecast, and showing the animated wallpaper on the Lock or Home screens. These are all minor enhancements that can be made to improve the overall quality of Forecast.

Forecast iOS 7 2

While the functionality of Forecast is great, one limitation of sorts that I experienced was incompatibility with other Lock screen extensions like AppBox and JellyLock. The blame for that issue cannot necessarily be placed on the developer of Forecast, but it’s still worth noting for those that use other Lock screen add-ons on your iPhone like I do. The screenshots above show the problem with tweaks overlapping, with JellyLock on the left and AppBox on the right.

For that reason, I place caution in recommending Forecast to anyone that is a frequent user of other Lock screen add-ons. But if you have an otherwise stock Lock screen, the tweak definitely lives up to its 99 cents price tag and is worth a download. Forecast is available now on Cydia in the default ModMyi repository. The package is a free upgrade for existing users of previous versions.

Will you be installing Forecast on your iPhone?