WeatherSignal for Android uses your phone’s sensors to crowdsource the neighbourhood

WeatherSignal is an ambitious and still-experimental project from the team behind OpenSignal. Whereas OpenSignal focuses on crowdsourcing the strength of various cellular and WiFi signals around your area, the newer app plugs into your phone’s native sensors to deliver atmospheric results and, in some cases, ambient temperature.

Most weather apps merely scrape or source such information from various static stations located around a city; some locales have many, others only a few. WeatherSignal determines the state of temperature, air pressure, precipitation, light intensity and on some phones humidity by taking advantage of the sensors included on most modern Androids.

The app also takes advantage of Google’s new Activity Recognition API, which can monitor what kind of activity you’re doing and track the state of the air (including your own acceleration) from within the app.

WeatherSignal claims that the Galaxy S4, which has the most sensors of any Android device, is best suited for this task, especially since it can gauge humidity more easily than others. It also has a thermometer, so the app doesn’t have to assess the temperature based on algorithms. On devices without such a sensor, it determines ambient temperature based on heat readings from the battery, but in my experience these have been extremely inconsistent and more than often incorrect.

The app is a weather geek’s dream app, since it can output all of the accumulated information into CSV files for your own perusal later on. It also works with other WeatherSignal users to determine what exactly is happening with the weather in your immediate location, not some station 20km away.

Download WeatherSignal for Android.