A few weeks ago, I was requested to create a simple Android App meant to show local weather and forecasts using a weather API.
Weather has become a pretty hot topic, especially in technology circles. Weather has not only become a standard app found on nearly every smartphone and mobile device, but it’s being used by many technology companies in new and innovative ways. Companies use weather forecasts to create work plans, distribution tasks, events, etc.
Here are some of the most relevant tips on these APIs.
1. Open Weather Map
The OpenWeatherMap service provides free weather data and a forecast API (JSON / XML) suitable for cartographic services like web and smartphones applications. OpenWeatherMap provides a wide range of weather data such as current weather, week forecast, precipitation, wind, clouds, etc. Weather data is crowsourced from global Meteorological broadcast services and more than 40.000 weather stations. OpenWeatherMap offers free access with some basic services and API calls limits but it’s more than enough if you want to use it yourself or on a small project and premium plans with more services and less limitations
AccuWeather provides premium-only weather forecasting services worldwide. The AccuWeather API provides subscribers access to location based weather data via a simple RESTful web interface. Data is available in more than 40 languages and dialects, making it very interesting for multi-language apps or websites. Data responses come in either JSON or JSONP. SSL encryption is available for establishing secure communication with your website/App. AccuWeather also offers an API Developer Portal for accessing of the API and Docs.
3. The Weather Channel
The Weather Channel is a well-known American satellite television channel which has provided weather forecast for more than 30 years. It partnered with Weather Underground to provide a weather API with global coverage and available in 80 languages. You can receive weather data for your application in JSON or XML. GIF, PNG or SWF formats are also offered. The site offers different premium API-access plans but you can use their free (500 API calls a day) for developing or in low-usage projects.
4. Dark Sky
The Dark Sky Company provides an API for weather forecasting and visualization services for your App or website. This services is developer-friendly as the API uses a simple, JSON interface. Community-provided API wrappers enable you to integrate with just a couple lines of code. They provide free access to the API (up to 1000 API calls per day) and you can use the API in both commercial and non-commercial applications. A credit with a “Powered by Dark Sky” badge is required wherever you display data from the API. If you need more daily API calls they charge $1 per 10,000 API calls after you reach the daily limit.
5. APIXU Weather API
6. World Weather Online
World Weather Online provide a way to get local weather, historical local weather, ski and mountain weather and marine weather data. They provide not only APIs to access weather information using standard HTTP/S requests in formats XML, JSON and JSON-P but also a very powerful developer portal. The portal provides an API explorer for to dive deep into their APIs. Code examples in all major programming languages are available, including VB.Net, PHP, Objective-C, C# and many other. While they don’t offer a free API plan, their Premium plans come with a 60 day free trial.
Weatherbit.io provides a weather API with current weather, forecasts as well as historic weather data. Their free plan allows 45 API calls per minute, access to 30 days historic weather data and 5-day forecasts. You can also upgrade to a premium plan to get access to secure HTTPS API calls, as well to reduce the update interval to 10 mins (the free plan updates data every 2 hours), hourly weather forecasts and higher limits on API calls.
While there are many weather services from English-speaking countries (mainly the US), there’s a notable lack of services coming from Spanish or Latinamerican services opening APIs to access their data. Well, I found Meteored, (part of the Tiempo.com network) the reference portal of meteorological information in Spain that also makes its API available so that any other portal can use its local-weather and forecast info through their XML-based API.
In addition to this API Meteored has developed a service offering user-configurable widgets that allows to display the weather information in any website. While their service is freely available, they require a link to their website on your website or App.