The Indian government has taken to smartphones with a weather app made by the meteorological department of India and when we first heard about it, we were really excited about the Government adopting technology. We really wanted to see and appreciate this new endeavour by the government and so, we downloaded the app to check it out. It turned out to be a very bad idea.
There are very good apps and there are very bad apps. We’re afraid to say that this weather app is the latter. We will be very surprised if you can get it to work, because we sure didn’t.
What is this all about?
Honestly, we don’t know. The app shows a page displaying information about the weather (temperature, humidity etc) with “medium text” written against it. The tabs at the bottom were days of the week, depicted as Day1, Day3, Day2, and Day 5 (in that very order) and to add a bit of interaction, they have depicted the background with photos with relevance to the weather. (Today shows a cloudy monsoon day in Bangalore, while it’s bright and sunny outside)
Nothing on the app works and with the photos are so badly chosen that it makes reading really difficult (and this is an understatement). Adding insult to that injury is this bright icon of the sun which covers some parts of the text that says “We are sorry. Our servers are experiencing some problem”.
Even if this app did work, it is very limited. Static information via text with photo backgrounds attempting to illustrate the day outside is very unimaginative and there are widgets that do a better job than this app.
Is this some kind of a joke?
Well going by how bad the app is, it definitely seems like it. The app is nothing like the screenshots on the Google Play store. We tested it on every android phone that we could get our hands on and the results have been consistent. It would have been even acceptable if this was another category of apps, but something as common as the weather app being done so badly is just not acceptable, even by Indian government standards.
Whichever app company this project has been contracted to (some say it is made by IBM India and DotSys) has just pulled the biggest con job in the history of app development.
Verdict: Highly disappointing.