When it comes to my iPhone I could easily be described as an appaholic. It’s a selective addiction to useful apps that actually get used (as opposed to simply sitting in a folder). Other than email and browsing, the two apps that actually get used the most have to do with weather and traffic. Yes, I live on an island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. How bad can weather and traffic be?
First on my list is the weather app Weather Underground. It’s free, but what makes it very useful is the built-in weather radar. One touch displays weather conditions and clouds. As a motorcycle rider who prefers to ride when it’s dry and not while it’s raining, weather radar is invaluable and displays where the rain is and where I shouldn’t be.
The Weather Underground iPhone app is free but displays advertising (though, rather unobtrusively) at the bottom of the screen. Spend a few dollars and Wunderground gives you more information and no ads.
Second on the list is an iPhone app which displays current traffic conditions. Wait. Doesn’t Apple’s new Maps app do the same? Yep. And, doesn’t Google’s new Maps app for iPhone do the same? Yep.
And neither one does what Waze does for free. Real time traffic conditions from other users near your location.
Waze users contribute traffic information on-the-fly so you get road alerts, accident notifications, hazards, police traps, road closures, and much more.
And, yes, there’s voice-guided navigation, automatic re-routing based on traffic conditions, and even an option to find the nearest and least expensive gasoline station. You can even send a notification to someone with your estimated ETA as you drive.
This is the app that Apple should buy and make a part of the iPhone experience. The latest version has over 10,000 five star ratings. It’s that good. But it’s also more valuable in larger, more condensed metropolitan areas with many iPhone users.