When should we hang out washing? Is it the best day to defrost our car? This is a dilemma that has troubled us all. You never know after you hang out laundry for drying, it starts to rain cats and dogs and you have do the entire process of washing all over again. Good news: Met Office has a solution – an app that can tell you when to hang out washing and defrost cars.
The app is free to download and requires the input of the users’ location to receive updates on weather forecast including videos about the place where they live. This alert system is a huge jump from the conventional version of the weather forecast that just included temperature.
This app was launched as part of Met Office’s re-branding strategy which also includes lists of “top 10 most interesting clouds” and comical short videos on social media to attract more audience. This change is thought to be triggered by BBC’s announcement to take on MeteoGroup and drop Met Office, as its weather forecaster starting next spring.
Head of the reprocurement project for the BBC channel, Nigel Charters, stated that MeteoGroup won the contract as it could “make the most of new technology and science to bring our audiences an even better service”. It is speculated that BBC dropped Met Office following rows over limiting the broadcast to traditional forecasting and for not being able to produce a good smartphone app for users.
Met Office’s head of media, Tom Shapland, has agreed that there is “room for improvement”.
“We must continue to listen to what the public are saying and listen to what the audience needs and continue to drive those improvements,” he said. Talking about the BBC’s decision he rebutted, “Regardless of the decision [by the BBC] we have to find all possible ways to reach the audience, that is our job. We would work with all media organisations to help us get our forecasts to the public.”
Now you can consult this app before deciding on whether to put out your laundry. It will also tell you the ideal time to defrost your car or go for a day out at the beach!