We know how important weather is to all of our audiences both in the UK and globally, so I am delighted to be able to bring them a refreshed look, new data and additional functionality.Liz Howell, BBC Head of Weather
Date: 06.02.2018 Last updated: 06.02.2018 at 00.01
The BBC is launching a new modern look for BBC Weather as we transition to our new weather services provider MeteoGroup, who will be providing the BBC with the latest forecasting data.
Over the last year the BBC and MeteoGroup have been working to develop an even better experience for viewers and users of the BBC weather website and mobile app.
Weather presenter Sarah Keith-Lucas will present the first television weather forecast with the new data on the BBC One lunchtime news.
With new on air graphics, lots more data and the latest in technology and forecasting science, this is the biggest change to BBC Weather, both for UK and international audiences, for more than ten years.
The BBC is now using a flat map projection for the regional and UK views. In addition, a realistic globe graphic allows presenters to move around the world, displaying a variety of data from falling snow particles to areas likely to see the aurora or ‘northern lights’.
Some of the key changes viewers will notice include a more contemporary design with new realistic mapping, which will be consistent across all BBC platforms.
Presenters and producers can also customise their forecasts for TV and online - adding different layers of data over the maps to tell the most relevant weather story.
BBC Weather now has access to more weather data models than ever before so there will also be longer range forecasting on TV and radio.
The BBC has already begun the process of moving users over to its new weather website and the updated BBC weather app. The website and app will now provide up to 14 days of hourly forecasts for more UK and international locations.
Additional digital features have also been included to help users to plan their days with a ‘chance of rain’ percentage and a ‘feels like’ temperature which guides users on how warm or cold it will feel outside given the wind conditions.
BBC Head of Weather, Liz Howell says: “We know how important weather is to all of our audiences both in the UK and globally, so I am delighted to be able to bring them a refreshed look, new data and additional functionality. The story doesn’t end on the day we launch – we have plans for exciting innovation on all platforms which we hope will help BBC Weather stay world-leading for many years to come.”
Peter Ruchatz, Chief Product and Marketing Officer at MeteoGroup, says: “The team at MeteoGroup are proud to be working with the BBC to ensure that viewers receive the best possible weather service. The new service will provide BBC viewers with accurate forecasting and new state-of-the-art graphics. The successful implementation of these weather services across all BBC platforms – TV, radio, web and mobile, worldwide – has required a high level of technical expertise, rigorous planning and a lot of hard work from both parties. MeteoGroup and the BBC have been relentlessly pursuing excellence together, and we look forward to seeing the benefits of this service for BBC viewers.”
The BBC will still be working with the Met Office for severe weather warnings and will continue to broadcast these important messages across the UK.
Phil Evans, Met Office Director of Operations says: “It is reassuring that the public will continue to have access to Met Office National Severe Weather Warnings on the BBC. When it matters most, the Met Office will be working with BBC Weather to ensure the public have access to official weather warnings so they have the best advice to help keep themselves and their property safe.”
The BBC will also work in partnership with the UK’s flood response agencies, The Department of Infrastructure in Northern Ireland, Scottish Environment Protection Agency in Scotland and The Environment Agency in England and Natural Resources Wales to ensure audiences receive the best possible information about any flood risk.
The BBC are partnering with the University of Leeds National Centre for Atmospheric Science and working with MeteoGroup to ensure that we deliver the most accurate, relevant and up to date forecasts for the UK.
The improved functions users will benefit from on televised broadcasts include:
Contemporary design and clearer graphics will now allow for more detail and information;
More realistic maps with additional topographic details including roads and urban areas, useful for those driving;
Improved high quality moving graphics
Greater flexibility to zoom in/focus on specific areas
Global visualisation tool to provide enhanced global graphics e.g. tropical storms and aurora
More data: longer range forecasts
Improved accessibility for users with colour-blindness
The improved functions users will benefit from across mobile and online include:
New 14-day forecast: The new site and apps will now have access to more data than ever before which means users can view 14 days of hourly forecast data for UK locations and major international cities
New forecast features: In addition to new moving graphics, there are added data fields like ‘chance of rain’ and ‘feels like’ temperature
More locations: The BBC has added thousands of new locations, including many international, to our database to make sure users can find the weather for where they are and wherever they want to go
New interactive map: On the website* users will see a new weather map for all forecast locations, helping to show the bigger picture of weather ahead in their area. Clicking on It will go to a full interactive map experience, allowing users to scroll and zoom around their local area, region, country and even the globe
*Not currently available on all mobile devices
About BBC Weather
Based in New Broadcasting House, London, on the mezzanine overlooking the BBC newsroom, the BBC Weather centre and its team of presenters are an integral part of BBC News output. In addition to studio-based forecasts, the presenters provide live links from an open air position and share their expertise in the News studio when major weather stories develop.
Committed to combining improvements in forecasting techniques with new and emerging broadcast platforms and audience needs, BBC Weather today is a fully multimedia operation, offering up-to-the minute weather information within the UK and globally across TV, radio, online and mobile. Today, BBC Weather produces more than 400 weather broadcasts a day, and forecasts for thousands of locations around the globe, compared to one broadcast a day in the early years on TV.
Weather broadcasts have formed a part of the BBC’s output for more than 90 years. On 14 November 1922, the BBC broadcast the first radio weather bulletin to the public and on 26 March 1923, daily radio forecasts began. On 11 November 1936, the world’s first television chart was transmitted at the start of a trial series. BBC Television closed down during the Second World War but, in July 1949, weather maps with captions began to be broadcast again.