When Apple unveiled iOS 8 earlier this month, it didn’t take long for beta testers to notice it had replaced Yahoo with The Weather Channel as the source of data in the stock iOS Weather app. While recent reports suggested Yahoo was trying to get Apple to put even more of its services on the iPhone including search, we now have a bit more of the story behind why exactly Yahoo got the boot for weather in iOS 8. Re/code reports that the deal was made by Weather Channel CEO David Kenny who also happened to be a former Yahoo board member:

The situation Yahoo finds itself in is due to a very crafty deal engineered by former Yahoo board member and Weather Channel CEO David Kenny, who has essentially shoved Yahoo off the key smartphone to be replaced by a new offering that he has been developing since he took over the weather news and information service last year. With it, he has unseated Yahoo from its important perch.

It’s worth pointing out that Yahoo has always powered its weather services with data from The Weather Channel. With that in mind, it’s unclear if Apple possibly had plans to drop Yahoo and go straight to the source before Kenny started developing the new and improved weather service referenced above. More from Re/code on why Apple made the switch:

To convince Apple to make the shift and cut Yahoo out of the middle, the Weather Channel added a lot more technology and information to the offering that it does not provide to Yahoo. That includes more weather specificity related to the location of a user, a nine-day forecast (up from five), a weather-conditions summary and more.

“Yahoo had been renting ocean-front property for years and did not realize the lease was up, and the Weather Channel slipped right in and took it,” said a Yahoo exec, who said the company acted too late to save the deal. “It’s a high-profile loss.”

We’ll have to see where that puts Yahoo at in terms of its relationship with Apple, powering other default iOS apps like Stocks, and the 400 million mobile monthly active users it claims through its various deals with smartphone manufacturers.

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24 Responses to “Why Apple switched from Yahoo to Weather Channel for Weather data in iOS 8”

  1. Apple would do better to strike local deals for weather data. Here in the UK the US based providers such as Yahoo are hopelessly inaccurate. Had Apple used the BBC here, the weather app would actually be useful.

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    • virtualstorm says:

      Same goes to Canada!

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    • Absolutely agree with this. One of the major annoyances for me since my first iPhone is that I have to bypass the handy integrated weather features because they’re never right. Nobody does local weather like a local weather service. Sure, Canadian weather services may call some US data to get a complete picture, but their focus is Canada, it’s not an afterthought.
      Also, the US weather services make me select the next city over to get their inaccurate forecast. It might not seem like very far, but the geography plus the lake effect creates a situation where the weather can be quite different between my city and the one next door.

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  2. herb02135go says:

    This article doesn’t say a lot.
    It’s easy to tell who relies on TWC for info. They’re the ones w/o raincoats during a downpour.

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  3. ryanericksen says:

    If the new iPhone has a barometer and can collect location specific weather data there might be some kind of a sharing agreement with Apple and The Weather Channel.

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  4. As long as they don’t use the Weather Channel App, that app blows in comparison to the Yahoo Weather App despite using the same data.

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  5. virtualstorm says:

    Isn’t that obvious? Yahoo Weather sucks. Really can’t rely on it. ALWAYS wrong!

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  6. One of the great mistakes of yahoo was to present a new design of your yahoo weather app with a seamless interface to the Apple Store and can keep that exclusive to the iOS app for weather in iOS7 :/ ..

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  7. “It’s worth pointing out that Yahoo has always powered its weather services with data from The Weather Channel.”

    Yeah, this is simply complete nonsense. You can open Yahoo Weather and TWC side by side and their current conditions and forecasts don’t even appear to be the same freaking state, let alone city. Yahoo Weather is beyond inaccurate, it’s just a complete joke. TWC is not spot-on, but it’s a lot closer to reality. Any suggestion they’re using the same data is complete nonsense.

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    • Air Burt says:

      Maybe continue reading?

      “To convince Apple to make the shift and cut Yahoo out of the middle, the Weather Channel added a lot more technology and information to the offering that it does not provide to Yahoo.”

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      • freediverx says:

        More is not the same as different or better. So before we had an inaccurate 5 day forecast and now we’ll have an inaccurate 9 day forecast. Hurray.

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      • Air Burt says:

        Uhh, no. The information is better and different. You couldn’t look dumber right now.

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  8. If you want a job where you’re guaranteed to never get fired, just be a meteorologist. You can be wrong in your weather predictions 80% of the time and it doesn’t matter.

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  9. I was just complaining this morning about how inaccurate the weather app is on the iPhone. My friend told me to download the Accuweather app. We’ll see how accurate it is.

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  10. Abraham Song says:

    Ahem…. from the article…

    “It’s worth pointing out that Yahoo has always powered its weather services with data from The Weather Channel.”

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  11. Isac Crouch says:

    Yahoo pulls it’s data from the Weather Channel.

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  12. Your ‘also’ is suggestive of TWC’s data being better than that of Yahoo!’s. However, your statement is rendered moot by the fact the TWC’s data and Yahoo!’s data are both the same. Comprende?

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  13. They switched it to Weather Underground, which is owned by the Weather Channel.

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  14. jrox16 says:

    Don’t mess with Tallest Skil…. she’s always here and always scary. :-)

    And furthermore, I agree Yahoo’s weather data sucks and I guess that means The Weather Channel sucks too if that’s where they get it from. It was storming for a good 10 minutes over my house and my iPhone said “Partly Cloudy” with an active picture of the sun shining between the clouds for my updated geo-located weather report. I’d say it was about 20 minutes behind by the time it switched to the pretty stormy animation, which kinda defeats the purpose of having this information, especially if it was on a widget. Looking out the damn window always works better.

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  15. What proprietary weather data doesn’t suck? Until amalgamated services like meteo are incorporated into stock apps, high profile companies like the weather channel will continue to dazzle us with flashy and inaccurate forecasting.

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  16. @Tallest Skil – The data Yahoo uses for its app is sourced from TWC APIs.

    Whether that data is presented the same or TWC is sharing the same data for its Apps and APIs may be entirely different.

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  17. TS is right. For once. See my comment below.

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  18. mooeymoose says:

    They say that yahoo gets it’s forecast from TWC but they don’t say it’s the same. It seems reasonable that the TWC may not sell it’s best data. I just looked up a few cities on yahoo and TWC. They were similar but in no way the same.

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