It’s a cold morning. Your head pops out from under the covers just enough to determine how cold it is before you shutter back under the safety of your covers. Remember, covers can protect you from everything, cold, sickness, even scary monsters. While in hibernation, dreading the moment your alarm finally goes off meaning you have to get up, you ponder your outfit. Is it cold enough for your new stylish leather gloves you got on sale? What about the cute sandals you got right before the season ended? You didn’t have time to wear them! You open your average weather app on your phone and see a bunch of words you don’t understand and a temperature.
Those highs and lows mean everything to a fashionista. Boots or sandals, coats or a light jacket? We all have these days, but thankfully, Kuan Huang, the creator of the Poncho weather app, has our backs. The Poncho Weather App doesn’t give you the fancy meteorology mumbo-jumbo; they tell your what you need and what to wear depending on the weather that specific day.
“My mom never told me that there’s an ‘x%’ chance that it’s going to rain tomorrow: She told me to bring an umbrella or not,” Huang explains to Business Insider. “I wanted to build something to take out all the numbers, and give only actionable information—don’t just tell me what degree it is outside, tell me what it means.”
For example, here is the weather for today. Obviously, it’s cold but it’s just a few numbers and a few pictures and some more numbers. Honestly, it’s boring and doesn’t provide the information we need.
Now here’s an image from Poncho, same information but they add, “☀ KEEP IT WARM, HIGH OF 29. The cold’s not here to make friends. Temps hit the high 20s. Grab gloves to scarves, & every layer in between.” We didn’t see this on the normal weather app. No suggestions of fashion or heartfelt reminder. It’s like an impersonal robot.
Poncho began with Betaworks a company’s who buys up start-ups. To get the project in motions, Huang took the numbers and emails of everyone he knew and determined the weather for that day and sent it out. He kept the information minimal, but when a co-worker asked that he add a bit of flair to the messages, something that would make him smile, one of Poncho’s main concepts was born. It’s fun, sassy and one of a kind tactics.
“On an unusually warm day, for example, instead of simply, “It’s warming up so dress lightly” Poncho’s message read: “A tad bit warmer today with temps in the low 70s, so don’t go over board with crazy sweaters and parkas and fur coats and cups of hot lava.”
Now in full blood, the app can give you multiple updates a day about subway traffic, remind you to walk your dog as well as the pollen count for anyone with allergies.
Poncho was the first company to launch by Hacker In Residence in New York City. It has nearly 10,000 followers, and 4,000 anxiously awaiting the release outside of New York. Boston, Chicago and San Francisco all seem like future options according to Huang.
“A lot of apps solve problems, but they add one more step to your daily routine,” Huang says. “Poncho integrates with it.”
If you’re a New Yorker, be sure to subscribe to Poncho and allow that cut little feline logo to assist you as you go about your busy day. After all, they get it and they are there to help with fashion tips and sassy commentary to make you smile.