One of the best things about Android, and one of its distinguishing features, is widgets. Widgets are ment to be added to the homescreen of your Android device, and usually contain some sort of information, or act as a switch for an action. In my personal homescreen layout, every page has a widget. Whether its weather, Twitter, Power Control, contacts, calendar… widgets are everywhere on all of my screens. So which ones are the best of the best? What interactive widgets are lucky enough to grace my screen? Every now and again, if you keep an eye out for Widget Watch, you’ll get to find out. Widget Watch will be a semi-regular review series where I’m going to be taking a look at how widgets preform, and and how they fit into my mobile setup. Keep in mind that Widget Watch won’t focus so much on the apps behind the widget, mainly just the widgets themselves. Today, I’ll be taking a look at my favorite weather widget, Go Weather.
Go Weather, from the incredibly talented minds at Go Dev Team, is available for free in the Android Market. It’s currently on version 1.9.3, and is 3.0M in size. The only requirement for Go Weather is Android version 1.6 and up. Go Weather has a low maturity rating.
Go Weather is a widget based weather application that features not only several different designs to choose from, but multiple options and accessories to configure them with.
When attempting to add Go Weather to your homescreen, you’ll find it under Go Weather (3 widgets). There’s a 2×1 widget, 4×1, and 4×2. Currently, there is five different, but very familiar, widget skins to choose from: default, simple style, MIUI, M9, and HTC. Each style essentially mimics the weather widget for the corresponding UI. The default style looks a lot like the weather widget from LG’s Optimus 2X UI, and the simple style is some sort of mash up of everything. Here are some samples of the different skins:
Once each widget is on your homescreen, depending on the size, different elements can be pressed to access different thing. Both the 2×1 and 4×1 can only be touched to enter the Go Weather app. The 4×2, however, can be touched to enter the weather app, by touching the weather, or clock app, but touching the time.
The app itself features a ton of useful features for a weather widget, including HD animations, multiple locations, and Market links to an animated wallpaper that goes along with it.
The options that you can configure for the Go Weather widget are pretty standard as far as weather widgets go, but are helpful nonetheless.
You can change the different units and formats for measurements, like temperature, wind, time, and date; the update notifications go slightly more in depth than others, offering a battery monitoring mode that stops the widget from updating at a certain battery level; there’s a location setting because the app lets you choose several locations, but only one can be displayed on the widget; and finally there’s a notification and alert section in the options that lets you configure alerts for weather advisories, and and temperature notifications.
There are two main reason I use Go Weather more than any other widget. One, I love the different skins. Two, I have never had any issues with auto-updates, no location problems, and performance has always been top notch. Go Weather is constantly being updated to enhance performance, and it shows. On my Nexus S, there’s never been a single moment of poor performance with Go Weather.
For all my weather related needs, I always turn to Go Weather. It’s smooth, has a ton of options, and runs great. If you’d like to give Go Weather a shot, simply use the Android Market link below. Be sure to let me know which weather widget you use in the comments below. If you have any widgets you’d like to see put to the test, feel free to share those as well.