If you’ve previously downloaded Microsoft’s stylishly minimalistic Weather app, you’ll no doubt have noticed over the past few days that a fresh update has arrived. Among a number of improvements, the most interesting point to note is that it’s been rewritten from the ground up with the Nokia Lumia 610 in mind.
We’ve always used the Weather app on our Nokia Lumia 800 and Nokia Lumia 710 for two simple reasons. One: it’s nice and simple to use, and two: it’s by Microsoft – creators of the Windows Phone OS itself – so it was only ever going to get better.
Guess what? It just got better. Version 2.0 of Weather brings with it a host of improvements that take advantage of the latest version of Windows Phone, 7.5 or Mango. One of these elements is Fast Application Switching (FAS), which basically optimises the app for the multitasking feature. This means that it will run in the background using the minimum of resources, and will snap back into use quickly when you press and hold the Back button and select the app again.
Another much-requested feature to have made it into version 2.0 is live tiles. Now you can pin your chosen city or town’s weather info to your start page. This will give you the current temperature and weather conditions in a location without having to enter the app – perfect for a quick glance while you’re running out of the door and need to decide which coat to grab.
But the truly interesting improvement is virtually invisible. The Weather app has been practically rewritten from scratch in order to optimise it for forthcoming low-cost Windows Phone handsets – a category that’s being spearheaded by the Nokia Lumia 610. Over on his blog, the Weather app’s developer Mike Battista states that he’s reprogrammed Weather in line with Microsoft’s push towards supporting low-cost devices.
Windows Phone chief Joe Belfiore names just one device that’s spearheading this initiative – the Nokia Lumia 610.
The Nokia Lumia 610 was announced at this year’s Mobile World Congress. It will be the most affordable Windows Phone device – and by extension the most affordable Lumia device – yet, thanks to its lower-power 800MHz processor and 256MB of RAM. Despite these diminished specs, it will run the vast majority of the 65,000 apps currently available on the Windows Phone Marketplace – including, of course, Weather.
Will you be jumping aboard the low-cost Windows Phone train with the Nokia Lumia 610? Let us know in the Comments section below.