Want to check out what the weather’s like outside quickly? Add a weather complication to your favorite Apple Watch faces!
Using a weather complication means you don’t have to open an app to check your current weather forecast. While Apple has its own Weather app and complication, many prefer using a third-party weather app.
If you are underwhelmed with options from Apple’s weather app complications, you’re not alone. Many users seek out other weather apps that offer more than Apple’s limited selection.
We’ve gone through all the best paid and free weather app complications currently available for your Apple Watch face. Keep reading to see our recommendations.
- Apple Watch Complications: a complete user guide
- How to create and share your Apple Watch face with friends and family
- Popular Weather app Carrot Weather gets a new redesign and Apple Watch complications
- How to get rain, snow, and severe weather alerts on iPhone and Apple Watch
- Is your Apple Watch not updating the weather? Let’s fix it
What’s a complication, and how is it different than an app?
A lot of people are confused by Apple Watch complications. Are they apps or something different?
Complications are part of apps. They help you get timely information from your favorite watch apps by just glancing at your watch face.
Simply put, an Apple Watch complication is a bit of an app’s information that displays directly on your Apple Watch’s face so you can quickly review it. A good complication means you shouldn’t need to open the app to get the information you want.
For example, instead of opening up your chosen weather app, when you add the app’s complication to your watch face, it’s available with just a quick peek at your watch.
Complications work like your iPhone’s widgets.
If you want more information than the complication shows, all you need to do is tap once on the complication to open the app. Then scroll down to see all available data!
Not all third-party apps offer complications–but most weather apps do! To use a complication, you must install the app on your Watch (even if you don’t use the app and just want the complication.)
And all Apple Watch faces can display at least one complication, and many allow you to add four or more complications!
To learn more about complications, see this guide.
The best free weather app complications for your Apple Watch
If you want a good weather app that’s free of charge, here are some of our recommendations.
These recommendations include apps that offer subscription services for additional features. However, you can download and use these apps free of charge, with advertisements.
Accuweather is a popular weather app available on the App Store. The app itself is good at giving notifications for various conditions.
It comes with a great Apple Watch app and complications for your watch face. You can get either daily weather and conditions summary or an icon with the current temperature.
Accuweather does offer a subscription service that removes ads in the app. A subscription costs 99 cents per month or $8.99 per year.
Weather Live is another excellent weather app available on the App Store. The app gives you some weather-related information like daily summaries, weekly forecasts, precipitation, and more.
It also has a great Apple Watch app that shows you the daily temperature, what it feels like, and more. You can report the current weather too!
For the complications, you have a couple of options. You can either use the big weather summary, which shows the current temperature and condition.
Or you can use the small icon one that depicts the current condition with a weather-related emoji.
Weather Live also offers an additional subscription you can purchase, but it is unnecessary. Their subscription includes more detailed forecasts, additional weather stats, and personalization features.
The subscription also removes ads in the app. The subscription costs $10.99 per month or $19.99 per year. You get a free three-day trial when you first sign up.
The Weather Channel
The Weather Channel app has always been a popular option for a free weather app. With their informative iPhone and Apple Watch apps, you would think they would offer great complication options too.
But their complications leave a lot left to be desired. You can only see the precipitation percentage for each day. So if that’s something that interests you, then this could work for you.
The Weather Channel app also offers a subscription service that includes additional features like an advanced radar, more detailed forecasts, lightning alerts, and more.
The subscription costs $4.99 per month or $29.99 per year. You can also get a free three-day trial when you first sign up.
My Radar is another weather app that you can download for free. They have a great app design on both the iPhone and the Apple Watch.
However, they only offer one complication for the Apple Watch. Their complication is a daily summary that gives you the current temperature and the highs and lows for the day.
MyRadar also offers a subscription that removes the ads from the app and gives you additional features like a hurricane tracker. The subscription costs $9.99 per year.
Weather Mate is another great free weather app you can download. It is a very informative app, and it has a great Apple Watch app to go along with it!
For the complications, you have a couple of options that you can use. There is a current weather summary option or an icon with the current temperature and condition.
They also have a paid version of their app, Weather Mate Pro, that you can download separately. The Pro app has a lot more features available for Apple Watch users.
If you want to know more about what Weather Mate Pro has to offer, keep reading to see all of our paid weather app recommendations.
Apple’s Weather app
While many people prefer third-party apps, a good and always free-to-use option is Apple’s own Weather app.
Apple has invested in making its own weather app more competitive and useful over the past few years. So if you haven’t checked it out recently, now is the time.
The Weather app features great complications and with no subscription ever. And we know can choose from several different weather data points to add as complications: Air Quality Index, Rain, UV Index, current forecast, Conditions, and Wind.
You can even add more than one weather complication to your watch face!
Currently, Apple’s Weather app pulls its data from a variety of sources including The Weather Channel, each country’s national weather services, and air quality information is provided by BreezoMeter or QWeather for China.
The best-paid or subscription-based weather app complications for your Apple Watch
If you are a real weather buff and feel like investing in a good weather app, we have some great options for some paid weather apps.
This list includes weather apps that you have to pay to download or are free to download but may require subscription services for additional features like more complications options.
Forecast Bar is a great free weather app you can download. It has an informative and customizable iPhone app and a very detailed Apple Watch app.
For complications, Forecast Bar does not disappoint. You have so many options to choose from!
With all the complications they offer, you could build your own weather watch face. Or, you can just use one of their pre-made watch face options!
Forecast Bar does offer a free trial on their subscription (includes one week of a Gold subscription.) Once that free trial expires, you need to subscribe to continue using the app and its complication.
If you want to try Forecast Bar out for the free trial make sure you cancel at least 24 hours prior to the end of the trial!
Forcast Bar currently offers three different subscription tiers: bronze, silver, and gold
- Bronze offers even more personalization features and costs $2.99 per year.
- Silver includes all of the features from the Bronze level but also offers additional widgets and information. Silver costs $7.99 per year. or a family plan of $19.99/year.
- Gold includes all the features from the Bronze and Silver levels but also has more alert options and reports. Gold costs $14.99 per year or a family plan of $29.99/year.
Dark Sky is one of the most popular and informative weather apps. It costs $4.99 just to download the app. But once you purchase the app, there are no more fees.
Dark Sky is a very informative weather app, and it offers a lot of reports and notifications. It also includes a great Apple Watch app that gives you hourly temperatures and a weekly forecast.
Speaking of the Apple Watch, Dark Sky also offers some different complications you can use. You can add a daily summary that includes the current temperature, condition, highs/lows, and sunrise/sunset times.
Or you could just use the small icon section to see the current temperature and condition.
Carrot is another top-rated weather app, and it is easy to see why. The Carrot weather app is super fun to use. You can give your weather report a polite to snarky to insulting personality.
While it is free to download, you need to purchase a subscription to use it. Carrot gives you a free trial for one week. But after that, the subscription costs you either $4.99 per month or $19.99 per year.
One of the greatest features Carrot includes is an extensive Apple Watch face gallery to choose from. They offer four different watch faces with different weather information from the Carrot app.
If you don’t want an Apple Watch face of just weather information, you can still choose from the many different complications available and add them to your favorite watch face.
Clime is another free-to-download weather app. However, you do need a subscription to use it.
You get a free one-week trial when you first join. After that, the subscription costs either $2.99 per month or $19.99 per year.
Mainly, the Clime app focuses on storms. But in the iPhone app and Apple Watch app, you can see the current temperature and conditions.
Since Clime focuses primarily on tracking storms, it is not surprising that their Apple Watch complication just tracks the chance of daily precipitation.
Weather Mate Pro
While Weather Mate is free to download and use, they offer a Pro version of their free app in the App Store. Weather Mate Pro costs $4.99 to download.
So what’s the difference between the free version of Weather Mate and the Pro?
Weather Mate Pro offers many different features like severe weather alerts, weather radio (for US users only), the ability to track up to 20 other cities, and the removal of ads.
Weather Mate Pro also includes pre-made Watch Faces with additional weather complications that you do not get in the free version. You also get access to their gallery of pre-made watch faces you can use.
Is your Weather complication not updating on your Apple Watch face?
If your watch’s weather isn’t accurate or regularly updating, it’s likely a setting needs adjustment.
Set your default city to the current location
On your paired iPhone, open the Watch app and check that you set your default city to your current location.
- Go to My Watch > Weather > Default City > choose Current Location.
- You can also choose a specific location from your list–we don’t recommend this, however, since it overrides your current location.
Check your location settings for the app
- On your paired Phone, go to Settings > Privacy > Location Services.
- Scroll down and choose the weather app you use as your watch face complication.
- Set location access to Always and toggle on Precise Location.
- Return to Location Services and tap Apple Watch Faces.
- Set this to While Using the App and toggle on Precise Location.
Turn on Background App Refresh
- Open the Settings app.
- Scroll down and tap the Weather app you use on your watch face.
- Toggle on Background App Refresh.
- Verify that location lists Always.
- Open the Watch app.
- Go to My Watch > General > Background App Refresh. Make sure it’s toggled on.
- Scroll down and locate your weather app and toggle background app refresh on.
If you use a third-party weather app on your watch face, like I do (Forecast Bar), try removing it from your watch face and then adding it back. Or use Apple’s Weather app instead.
For more troubleshooting tips on the weather not updating on your Apple Watch complication, see this article: Is your Apple Watch not updating the weather? Let’s fix it.
One of the best things about being an Apple Watch user is the watch’s personalization features. The Apple Watch face is so easily customizable, making each user’s device unique to them.
If you want a whole watch face dedicated to the weather, you can do that!
While I absolutely love the uniqueness and humor that both Forecast Bar and Carrot offer, I can’t justify paying for a subscription for their services.
That’s why I really like Weather Mate.
While it doesn’t have Carrot’s personality, the weather features are similar and the app is free to use (or upgrade to the paid Pro version,) which is more important for me anyway!
And Apple’s own Weather app has really improved over the past year so it’s now a solid choice that’s free to use. Plus, the Weather app now allows you to choose from many different complications, including Conditions, Air Quality, Rain, UV Index, Wind, or the current weather forecast.
Do you have a favorite weather app for your Apple Watch? Or a watch face full of weather-only complications? Let us know!