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BAB168/ NOVEMBER 2015

THE WEATHER COMPANY:


CREATING CONSUMER APPS THAT LEVERAGE
BIG DATA
It was a gorgeous day in the fall of 2014 at the Atlanta headquarters of The Weather Company
(TWC). In fact, with one glance at the oversized 10 on the OutSider mobile running app his
team just released, Chris Huff, VP of Mobile and Consumer App Development, quickly
confirmed it was a perfect day for a run. The 10 was the highest score on the soon-to-bepatented Run Weather Index (RWI). Touching the number displayed the six components
comprising the RWI algorithmwind speed, precipitation, temperature, humidity, cloud
cover, and air quality. Weather was a key factor for runners, and the inclusion of TWCs
detailed and highly accurate weather forecasts provided the OutSider app with what the team
hoped was a clear competitive advantage over myriad other running apps.
In building this app, TWC was reacting to the mobile mind shift, particularly among the 15- to
30-year old consumer demographic. Impatient and glued to their smartphones, millennials
had very high expectations for immediacy. They wanted to transmit or receive information
from anywhere, at anytime. Forrester Research referred to these incidents as mobile
moments, and searching for weather information was a perfect example. 1 In 2014, the
dramatic shift to mobile devices caused The Weather Company, parent company of The
Weather Channel, to face the biggest challenge in its 32-year history. Similar to the disruption
created by the movement from printed to digital books or DVDs to streaming video, weather
consumption was moving quickly from TV to the smartphone. Nielsen reported that the
network averaged a five-year low of 211,000 daily viewers in 2013, down from 273,000 in

Forrester Research Publishes New Book: The Mobile Mind Shift. Professional Services Close-Up. Business
Insights: Essentials, May 19, 2014,
http://bi.galegroup.com.ezproxy.babson.edu/essentials/article/GALE%7CA368528939/48707a75e8111e213213ae
2efe6db51b?u=mlin_m_babson, accessed September 2015.
1

This case was prepared by Ruth Gilleran, Senior Lecturer, Patricia J. Guinan, Associate Professor, and Salvatore
Parise, Associate Professor, of Babson College. It was developed as a basis for class discussion rather than to
illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of an administrative situation. It is not intended to serve as an
endorsement, source of primary data or illustration of effective or ineffective management.
Copyright 2015 Babson College and licensed for publication to Harvard Business School Publishing. All rights
reserved. No part of this publication can be reproduced, stored or transmitted in any form or by any means
without prior written permission of Babson College.

This document is authorized for use only by Linh Nguyen in CIS 2016 Spring taught by Mark Lee Ford, Temple University Japan Campus from January 2016 to July 2016.

For the exclusive use of L. Nguyen, 2016.


The Weather Company: Creating Consumer Apps that Leverage Big Data
BAB168 / NOVEMBER 2015

2012.2 Citing declining ratings and evidence of an increasing number of individuals more
frequently using their smartphones to check the weather, DIRECTV blacked out TWC to
DIRECTVs 20 million subscribers, which represented one-fifth of TWCs total audience.3 In a
January 2014 email statement to SNL Kagan Media and Communications, DIRECTV Chief
Content Office Dan York said, Consumers understand there are now a variety of other ways
to get weather coverage, free of reality show clutter and that TWC does not have an exclusive
on weather coverage the weather belongs to everyone.4 A few months later, DIRECTV
reinstated TWC because of consumer preferences, but the company clearly needed more
innovative approaches to serving up its weather data. The OutSider app, TWCs first lifestylerelated weather app, helped answer that call.
As Huff laced up his running shoes and headed to the elevator, he imagined how he could
make the weather data more valuable to TWCs running customers by delivering information
that both interested and benefitted them. According to Huff, OutSider is much more than an
app, it is a way to learn about how the weather affects a persons body chemistry. Whether
one runs four or twenty-four miles, all runners are affected by the weather. People
understand its not the best time to run when the newscaster is saying its 90 and humid, be
careful, stay indoors. However, when its 82 degrees, with 90% humidity, it can be just as
dangerous outside.5
In addition to the temperature, the sun, and the rain, air quality and pollen levels affected
everyone greatly. With the app released, Huff pondered his next move. Should he continue to
develop OutSider further and if so, what features should be added to make it a go-to running
app? Consumers downloaded several apps, but they used few on a regular basis. Should he
target other outdoor enthusiast segments? Or, should he persist down the learning path,
studying the run analytics and marketing what Huff calls biometrics insights (see Exhibit 1
for definition) to other organizations? But right now, the RWI of 10 was all he could think
about. The Weather Channel slogan, Its Amazing Out There, could not be more apropos.
Time for a run.

The Weather Company


TWC represented the most well-known name in the weather business. Three divisions
comprised the company: TV, digital, which included website and mobile, and professional
services which sold data services, software, and hardware to TV stations, retailers, airlines,
and energy traders. During his keynote address at the 2014 annual Association of Business
Information and Media Companies, The Weather Company COO, Chris Walters, remarked,
digital and specialized business information products, not television, are two of the biggest
drivers of growth for The Weather Company, parent of The Weather Channel. Today, b-to-b
products represent 10 percent of revenue. In the next three years, that percentage will double,
J. J. McCorvey, A Storm Brews Over Weather, Fast Company, February 2014,
http://www.fastcompany.com/3023354/weather-channel-a-storm-brews-over-weather, accessed July 2014.
3 Rodney Ho, Big Storm Brewing for Weather TV: Weather Channel Fight with DirectTV just One Challenge.
Network Convinced Snow Proves its Worth, The Atlanta Journal Constitution, February 02, 2014,
http://search.proquest.com.ezproxy.babson.edu/docview/1493337386?accountid=36796, accessed July 2014.
4 Sarah Barry James, Weather Channel Stuck in Eye of Carriage Fee Storm, SNL Kagan Media &
Communications Report, January 14, 2014, http://www.snl.com/InteractiveX/Article.aspx?cdid=A-2653271813608, accessed November 2014.
5 Chris Huff, telephone interview by author Ruth Gilleran, Wellesley, MA, August 21, 2014.
2

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For the exclusive use of L. Nguyen, 2016.


The Weather Company: Creating Consumer Apps that Leverage Big Data
BAB168 / NOVEMBER 2015

thanks to big data and the ability to integrate into customer workflows.6 One year earlier in
January of 2013, Digital Division President Cameron Clayton stated, The Weather Co.'s
revenue from non-TV sources is now not far away from being half of total revenue. 7
Launched over 30 years ago in 1982 as the first 24-hour network devoted to weather
programming, The Weather Channels 2013 audience totaled more than 100 million viewers
and the network generated $350 million in annual income.8 Its popular weather website,
weather.com, boasted 8 million daily visitors and was the go-to website in 2013 for obtaining
weather information. 9 In fact, the website commanded an impressive 51 percent of the
market share, followed by AccuWeather with just 14 percent (see Exhibit 2 for the top
weather brands).
TWCs weather data came not only from the National Weather Service, which owned the
radar system in the United States, but also from data TWC gathered on its own and from data
supplied by 100,000 private individuals with their own weather stations. Aided by
sophisticated computer models within TWCs forecasting engine, over 200 meteorologists
analyzed this data and generated highly accurate weather forecasts. The recent growing
granularity of data from an increased use of weather sensors allowed for greater accuracy in
TWCs weather forecast. 10 According to the Forecast Advisor website which graded the
accuracy of U.S. weather forecasting outlets, in 2013 TWC blew away its competition which
included the National Weather Service, Accuweather, and Custom Weather.11
TWC was owned by a consortium consisting of NBC Universal and the private equity firms
The Blackstone Group and Bain Capital. In 2011, The Weather Channel Companies became
The Weather Company, recognizing its diversity of products and services and its broad appeal
to consumers and businesses.

TWC Revenue Streams


Like most media sites, TWC employed an advertising-based revenue model. Consumer ads
were displayed alongside TWCs weather data, regardless of where the data was served up
on TV, its website, or its mobile app. TWCs CEO David Kenny was no stranger to advertising.
As a former CEO of Digitas, a global marketing and technology firm, he knew better than
most how radical the coming changes were. As he explained in a New York Times interview,
Matt Kinsman,ABM Annual Keynote: How The Weather Channel Saves and Makes Money for B-to-B Markets,
May 6, 2014, http://blog.siia.net/index.php/2014/05/abm-annual-keynote-how-the-weather-channel-saves-andmakes-money-for-b-to-b-markets/, accessed June 2015.
7 Todd Spangler, Nearly Half of Weather Co.s Revenue Comes From Digital Division, Multichannel New,
January 15, 2013, http://www.multichannel.com/news/mobile/nearly-half-weather-cos-revenue-comes-digitaldivision/306174, accessed June 2015.
8 J.J. McCorvey.
9 John Swansburg, "It's Ugly Out there," New York, Mar 10 2014,
http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2014/03/can-the-weather-channel-survive-its-competitiors.html, accessed
July 2014.
10 Kim S. Nash, Big Data from Above. CIO, May 24, 2013, http://www.cio.com/article/2385814/big-data/how-toprofit-from-the-ultimate-big-data-source-the-weather.html?nsdr=true&page=3, accessed July 2014.
11 Rueben Fischer-Baum and Dennis Mersereau, What Parts of the Country Get the Worst Weather Predictions?
The Vane, May 2, 2014, http://thevane.gawker.com/what-parts-of-the-country-get-the-worst-weather-predict1568905474, accessed October 2014.
6

This document is authorized for use only by Linh Nguyen in CIS 2016 Spring taught by Mark Lee Ford, Temple University Japan Campus from January 2016 to July 2016.

For the exclusive use of L. Nguyen, 2016.


The Weather Company: Creating Consumer Apps that Leverage Big Data
BAB168 / NOVEMBER 2015

platforms like his were working directly with companies to develop advertising campaigns,
especially on mobile devices, essentially bypassing ad agencies.12
A second revenue stream for TWC was the weather data and the expert analysis it marketed
to corporate clients. The Professional Services arm of TWC helped its corporate clients profit
from its weather forecasts by enabling them to anticipate the impact of weather on their
bottom line. Blue chip customers included national retailers, global airliners, automobile
manufacturers, emergency services, utilities, insurers, and media giants. Two clients, Home
Depot and American Airlines, incorporated weather data into their buying decisions so they
could more accurately predict what products or services would be needed when and where. 13
Starting with the release of iOS8, Apple incorporated The Weather Channel data, replacing
Yahoo Weather. At the 2014 International Consumer Electronics Show, General Motors
announced plans to include The Weather Channel app within its OnStar concierge dashboard
screen.14
With the current emphasis of mining big data to make more fact-based decisions, as well as
the availability of modern tools to process this data, the company was betting its future on the
Digital and Professional Services divisions. Both divisions were headed up by Cameron
Clayton, President of Product and Technology.

Consumer Apps Ideation Process


To address the dramatic shift to mobile, The Weather Companys Digital Division was tasked
with leveraging the companys big data to obtain new customers, establish more binding
relationships with existing ones, and increase advertising revenue. For a 30-year-old
company with 1,300 employees, this new products group resembled a start-up. In the
summer of 2012, Huff invited all company employees to a hackathon, a marathon session
where software designers and programmers developed an application prototype in a
condensed period of time. As Huff explained, between the over 200 meteorologists, weather
scientists, and technologists, there are a lot of engineering-minded folks walking the halls.
When the group gathered on day one, they were given deliberately broad instructions, build
some weather-related working software that our customers will love.15 Specifically, Huff was
targeting one super-user groupthe outdoor enthusiasts.
Some employees came with ideas they were hoping to implement, while others, for example
programmers, were eager to construct a prototype. After forming teams and brainstorming,
they spent the next day and a half developing the idea and building out the software. On day
three, the teams were given three minutes to present their concept to a panel of judges
consisting of the VP of Engineering, the VP of Product, the President of the Digital Products
group, and an on-camera meteorologist. The judging criteria included whether the prototype
solved a problem the company wanted to help solve, whether it was innovative, and whether
it functioned. Several ideas emerged from the hackathon, but the one that garnered the most
Tanzina Vega, Advertising mega merger driven by the rise of Big Data, The Global Edition of the New York
Times, July 30, 2013, p. 15.
13 Kim S. Nash.
14 Jeff Bennett, Car Makers at Consumer Electronics show Tout Ways to Plug Autos into the Web; Moves Raise
Worries among Highway Safety Regulators, Wall Street Journal (Online) January 5, 2014,
http://www.wsj.com/articles/SB10001424052702304887104579302880279339184, accessed July 2014.
15 Chris Huff, telephone interview by author Ruth Gilleran, Wellesley, MA, August 21, 2014.
12

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For the exclusive use of L. Nguyen, 2016.


The Weather Company: Creating Consumer Apps that Leverage Big Data
BAB168 / NOVEMBER 2015

enthusiasm was a weather-centric app for cyclists. TWC later pivoted the idea to focus on
running. Similar to how Red Bull created a series of gaming apps rather than an app focused
on its energy drink, TWC sought out an entirely new experience for its customers. By building
a running app, when the OutSider user pressed the Run button, he or she was engaging with
the TWC brand.16

The OutSider App


When work on OutSider began, most of the running apps on the market were fairly
utilitarian. Users had running statistics they could share with their social network, but the
apps did not provide insights as to why their runs were better on some days than others. The
apps lacked any indication of the plausible reason for the runners time. The weather data
provided one explanation. Besides being a motivating force to nudge people off the couch
when good running conditions prevailed, a major benefit of the OutSider app was its planning
aid. OutSider provided accurate and real-time weather forecasts, allowing users to plan
betterwhen to run, what to wear, and how to hydrate. While a few of the popular running
apps, like Runtastic, provided current weather data, none provided highly accurate detailed
weather forecasts, a fact that TWC hoped to capitalize on (see Exhibit 3 for a features list of
the popular running apps).
When the app opened, it displayed the current weather based on the runners latitude and
longitude as detected by the GPS on his or her smart phone. Even the app background photo
was based on location. The runner in New York might see skyscrapers while the Vermont
runner would be looking at rolling hills. Users entered profile data, including typical run
distance, gender, age, height, weight, and body type. Through a series of slide bars, they
specified how their runs were affected by air quality, humidity, temperature, rain, and wind.
This information altered the RWI, an indication of how well the runner would perform and
therefore enjoy his or her run.
Upon pressing the Plan a Run button, the runner was presented with hourly run conditions
for the next three days and morning and evening conditions for the next ten. This was
especially important when the runner was visiting a location where he or she was unfamiliar
with the weather patterns. According to Huff, the planning aspect of the app was one of its
major differentiators, If you can pinpoint in advance the best times to run, you can more
easily convert people into runners.17 For example, runners often think, I need to get three
runs in this week, so Ill wait for better weather. The temperature may be good, but the
humidity could be high, which users cannot see by looking at temperature alone. The
planning data allowed runners to change their running clothes, hydrate more, or postpone
their runs to later in the day. To further aid planning, the app included videos. An
information symbol was right below the RWI; pressing the button displayed short articles and
TWC videos addressing the condition associated with the current RWI. For example,
according to Huff, If its a five because of the heat, then youll see something about a
hydration strategy.18

S. Gupta, For Mobile Devices, Think Apps, Not Ads. Harvard Business Review, 91, no. 3 (2013): 70-75.
Chris Huff, telephone interview by author Ruth Gilleran, Wellesley, MA, August 21, 2014.
18 Ibid.
16
17

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The Weather Company: Creating Consumer Apps that Leverage Big Data
BAB168 / NOVEMBER 2015

To track their run, users pressed the Lets Run button and selected a run typebasic,
distance, timed, or heart rate. While running, the weather data refreshed every 1 km or five
minutes. Historical performance could be viewed on the Run History menu, and the runner
had the option to share this data with friends and family via Facebook. The app also
connected to the Wahoo fitness heart rate monitor, which provided information on the
runners heart rate, cadence, and speed. In an attempt to improve the runners state of mind
and hence their run statistics, the OutSider app also integrated with the Google app Songza,
suggesting playlists based on local weather conditions (see Exhibit 4 for images of the
OutSider app).

The OutSider App Development Team


The development of TWCs consumer mobile apps was the responsibility of TWCs Digital
Product Group, not its centralized IT department. This group had proven that it had the skills
to design and produce top selling apps. In May 2013, Apple named The Weather Channel app
the second most popular iPad app and the seventh most downloaded iPhone app of all time.
In 2014, TWCs weather app surpassed 100,000,000 cumulative downloads. This success,
however, did not necessarily translate into a successful running app.
Huff reported to the president of the Digital Product Group and his development team
consisted of thirty TWC employees plus 10 individuals from Mobiquity, a professional
services firm that helped organizations create, design, develop, and implement mobile
strategies. Since TWC had previously worked with Mobiquity to design and help develop the
user experience of TWCs core weather app, the company was chosen to help create the
running app. The front-end development effort was led by Mobiquity Project Manager Chris
Decker. Decker was aided by the Mobiquity User Experience (UX) design team consisting of
three senior designers and architects led by Mike Welsh, Mobiquitys Creative Director (see
Exhibit 5 for information on Mobiquity). The UX team was focused on ensuring that the
users interactions with and perception of the application was positive.
TWCs IT organization, headed by Chief Information and Technology Officer Bryson Koehler,
was responsible for the storing and processing of the companys weather data, as well as
developing and maintaining its internal enterprise software. This group played a crucial role
in the creation of the OutSider app by providing a services layer that delivered current and
forecasted weather conditions to the app (see Exhibit 6 for the management team bios).

The OutSider App Development Methodology


Right from the start, the development team focused on the user experience. Consumers were
task-oriented on their mobile devices. Even for those with the tiniest fingers, entering data or
even responding to push buttons or slide bars can be a challenge. According to Welsh, one of
Mobiquitys differentiators is its extensive, in-depth, user experience team. More than the
apps features, its about the user experience. First impressions are extremely important when
it comes to mobile apps. Users quickly grow wary with multi-step processes.19 The UX team
19

Mike Welsh, interview by author Ruth Gilleran, Wellesley, MA, August 6, 2014.

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The Weather Company: Creating Consumer Apps that Leverage Big Data
BAB168 / NOVEMBER 2015

took the information from the hackathon and created storyboards and then wireframes,
images representing the skeletal layout of the mobile app along with its navigation. Next, the
team conducted a focus group in which five or six runners were invited to view a clickable
prototype created using proto.io. After several design iterations, development began.
The development team followed the agile software development method with a goal of
creating a minimally viable product that they could learn from. Agile was an umbrella term
that referred to a few different iterative software development methodologies, such as Scrum
or Extreme Programming (XP). These methodologies were committed to feature-driven
development and they shared the common goal of delivering small pieces of working software
at set intervals, generally from two to eight weeks. Agile software development contrasted
with the Waterfall methodology where all the business requirements were designed, coded,
and tested before any software was released to the end user. This resulted in a lengthy
product release cycle that did not allow for the ability to react to changing business
conditions. With The Weather Companys commitment to continuous innovation and the
entrepreneurial process, the agile software development method was the only viable option.
While Mobiquity was building the front-end, Huffs developers were securing the connections
to the back-end big data weather services platform and working on the apps core functions,
such as the RWI algorithm. According to Huff, we pulled every data element we had and
said, what is that? Is that useful? And so we went down the list of all the data we had, and
tried to understand how useful it would be.20 Development of the app took place over three
months, with the team initially working in two-week sprints, later shifting to one-week.
Coding was done in Objective C, the main programming language used by Apple for the OS X
and iOS operating systems. Quality Assurance technicians performed internal testing, and
running enthusiasts from Mobiquity and TWC beta tested the app. The OutSider app was
released in June of 2014, and just a few days later, Mashable referenced it in its article, 5
Cant Miss Apps: OutSider and More.

The Weather Companys Big Data Platform


Much of the success of the OutSider app could be attributed to the companys big data
platform and processes. When interviewed by InformationWeek, Bryson Koehler, CITO at
The Weather Company remarked, Weather is the original big data application, when
mainframes first came about, one of the first applications was a weather forecasting model. 21
The Weather Company had been dealing in big data long before the term was popular. Each
day, TWC processed 20 terabytes of weather data, a figure that the company expected to get
bigger. The data included a wide range of information, including temperature, wind speeds,
rain, snow, hurricanes, earthquakes, tornadoes, barometric pressure, wave height, and more.
The weather data met all three criteria of big datavolume, velocity, and varietyand
therefore TWC needed a modern technology architecture to store and process it. The Weather
Company employed the cloud infrastructure-as-a-service model, commissioning four Amazon
Web Services availability zones: U.S. East, U.S. West, Europe, and Asia. The company chose a
NoSQL environment over a SQL environment for its scalability and its ability to store and
Chris Huff, telephone interview by author Ruth Gilleran, August 21, 2014.
Henschen, The Weather Company Builds a New Forecasting Platform with Bashos Riak NOSQL
Database and Amazon Web Services, Information Week, November 25, 2013,
http://www.informationweek.com/big-data/software-platforms/big-data-reshapes-weather-channelpredictions/d/d-id/1112776, accessed May 2014.
20

21 Doug

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For the exclusive use of L. Nguyen, 2016.


The Weather Company: Creating Consumer Apps that Leverage Big Data
BAB168 / NOVEMBER 2015

process large volumes of semi-structured data that included not just weather statistics, but
also images and videos. The Weather Company used the open source Riak NoSQL database to
store the bulk of its weather data. It also used the open source Cassandra NoSQL database to
serve up weather data through its application programming interface (API) to its own apps,
as well as to third-party weather-related apps. The API served the OutSider app and was
available for future consumer app development projects.

Key Challenges Ahead


Huff was pleased that his team had the vision and expertise to leverage the companys big
data, create exclusive content in the RWI, focus on the user experience, and work with the
centralized IT department to build a platform that supported not just the OutSider app, but
also future apps targeting outdoor enthusiasts. Upon returning from his run, he looked over
the latest OutSider reviews on the iTunes store. Realizing that TWC must work hard to secure
a spot on the much-valued smartphone real estate, Huff jotted down the suggested
enhancements in the reviews before heading into his staff meeting.
Getting to this point was exhausting, yet exhilarating for the team. Long hours resulted in the
initial release and now the team members were anxious to move forward with subsequent
iterations. The OutSider apps differentiated value was the intersection of its proprietary
weather forecasts and the runners preferences and past run performance data. As Huff and
his team pushed ahead, they faced some daunting questions:
1. Now that public weather datasets were becoming available, how would TWC be able to
maintain its competitive advantage with its weather-centric running app? How
exclusive was the weather content? As well as location and weather, what other data
could TWC incorporate into the OutSider app to make it the go-to running app and a
source of premium advertising revenue?
2. How could TWC continue to leverage mobile apps to further monetize its significant
investment in its weather data? What additional mobile use cases should they pursue?
Why?
3. Should The Weather Company expend its efforts developing consumer apps, or should
it focus on its professional services division, offering weather and biometeorological
analytics to its business customers? Could they effectively do both?

This document is authorized for use only by Linh Nguyen in CIS 2016 Spring taught by Mark Lee Ford, Temple University Japan Campus from January 2016 to July 2016.

For the exclusive use of L. Nguyen, 2016.


The Weather Company: Creating Consumer Apps that Leverage Big Data
BAB168 / NOVEMBER 2015

Exhibit 1
Definition of Biometrics
According to the International Biometric Society.
The terms Biometrics and Biometry have been used since early in the
20th century to refer to the field of development of statistical and
mathematical methods applicable to data analysis problems in the
biological sciences. Statistical methods for the analysis of data from
agricultural field experiments to compare the yields of different varieties
of wheat, for the analysis of data from human clinical trials evaluating the
relative effectiveness of competing therapies for disease, or for the
analysis of data from environmental studies on the effects of air or water
pollution on the appearance of human disease in a region or country are
all examples of problems that would fall under the umbrella of
Biometrics as the term has been historically used.

Recently, the term Biometrics has also been used to refer to the
emerging field of technology devoted to identification of individuals using
biological traits, such as those based on retinal or iris scanning,
fingerprints, or face recognition. Neither the journal Biometrics nor the
International Biometric Society is engaged in research, marketing, or
reporting related to this technology.

Source: BiometricsA Journal of the International Biometric Society, The International Biometric
Society Web site, http://www.biometrics.tibs.org/, accessed May 2014.

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The Weather Company: Creating Consumer Apps that Leverage Big Data
BAB168 / NOVEMBER 2015

Exhibit 2
Top 10 Weather Web Brands By Unique Audience
(U.S. Total)
June 2013 Unique U.S. Visitors
Rank

Website

Unique
Audience

The Weather Channel Network

37,400,000

AccuWeather.com

8,440,000

WeatherBug

7,331,000

NOAA

6,997,000

MSN Weather

5,552,000

Weather Underground

4,169,000

Weather Central

1,765,000

JustWeather.com

535,000

World Weather Online

409,000

10

Find Weather

385,000

Source: Todays Forecast: Millions of Americans Check the Weather Online, Nielsen Web site,
http://www.nielsen.com/us/en/insights/news/2013/today_s-forecast--millions-of-americans-checkthe-weather-online.html, accessed June 2014.

10

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The Weather Company: Creating Consumer Apps that Leverage Big Data
BAB168 / NOVEMBER 2015

OutSider (The
Weather
Channel)
Endomondo
Sports Tracker

Free

Free

Get Running
(Couch to 5K)

$2.99

iSmoothRun
Pro

$5.99

Map My Run by
Map My Fitness
Nike + Running

Free

Free

Runkeeper by
FitnessKeeper,
Inc.

Free

Runtastic Pro
by Runtastic
Strava Runing
and Cycling

Free

Free

X
X

Detailed Weather
Forecasts

Current Weather

Fitness Trackers/Heart
Sensors

Gamification

Social Sharing

Song Playlist

Route Map

Audio Coach/Personal
Trainer

Detailed Running Stats

Android

iOS

Cost

Exhibit 3
OutSider Competition Popular Running Apps

X
X

X
X

X
X

Table compiled from the following sources:


John Corpuz, 10 Best Running Apps, toms guide, February 12, 2015,
http://www.tomsguide.com/us/best-running-apps,review-2285.html, accessed June 2015.
Allyson Kazmucha, The Best Running Apps for IPhone: RunKeeper, May My Run, iSmoothRun, and
more! iMore, June 2, 2014,
http://www.imore.com/best-run-tracking-apps-iphone-runkeeper-map-my-run-runtastic-and-more,
accessed July 2014.

11

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The Weather Company: Creating Consumer Apps that Leverage Big Data
BAB168 / NOVEMBER 2015

Exhibit 4
The OutSider App

Source: Images are screencaps of the OutSider app taken by the author. Used with permission.

12

This document is authorized for use only by Linh Nguyen in CIS 2016 Spring taught by Mark Lee Ford, Temple University Japan Campus from January 2016 to July 2016.

For the exclusive use of L. Nguyen, 2016.


The Weather Company: Creating Consumer Apps that Leverage Big Data
BAB168 / NOVEMBER 2015

Exhibit 5
About Mobiquity
Mobiquity is a professional services firm trusted by hundreds of companies to be their
mobile engagement provider. We simplify mobile. On a global scale, the trends, strategy,
users, platforms, technology, development, and organizational issues of mobile are
complicated. We eliminate the complexity. Our team represents the best talent in business
and mobile strategy, user-experience design and technology and will guide you through the
process of going mobile.
We push the envelope of innovation to deliver the right solution to address your business
challenges or uncover business opportunities. Whether you want to increase traffic to your
stores, improve the productivity and connectivity of your sales force or extend existing
employee or business processes to mobile devices, we can help you build the roadmap and
then design, build, deploy and manage enterprise mobile solutions and apps that work for
your business.

Source: About Mobiquity, Mobiquity company Web site, http://www.mobiquityinc.com/about,


accessed May 2014.

13

This document is authorized for use only by Linh Nguyen in CIS 2016 Spring taught by Mark Lee Ford, Temple University Japan Campus from January 2016 to July 2016.

For the exclusive use of L. Nguyen, 2016.


The Weather Company: Creating Consumer Apps that Leverage Big Data
BAB168 / NOVEMBER 2015

Exhibit 6
OutSider App Management Team Bios
Chris Huff
VP of Mobile App Development
Chris joined The Weather Channel in 2011 to lead their Mobile and Consumer App Development group. He has
over 16 years of industry experience including 11 years of SAP experience, designing, building and managing
integration solutions. Prior to SAP, Chris worked at Home Depot where he managed the online team and at
PriceWaterhouseCoopers as an IT logistics lead for the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta. Chris holds a Bachelors
degree in Business from the University of Georgia and an MBA from Georgia State University.
Bryson Koehler
CITO
Bryson joined TWC in 2012 as head of technology responsible for setting the strategic technical direction for the
technology initiatives across the companys four divisions TV, Digital, Professional and International. Bryson
oversees the technology architecture, global infrastructure, weather forecasting and big data platforms, broadcast
and localization systems, software engineering and quality assurance as well as the companys internal systems.
Prior to TWC, Bryson held senior management positions with the InterContinental Hotels Group. Bryson
graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with dual degrees in Communications and Political
Science.

________________________________________________________________
Mobiquity
Chris Decker
Senior Project Manager
Chris joined Mobiquity in 2013 to help its clients plan, coordinate, and implement activities pertaining to full-cycle
mobile technology initiatives. He currently manages the mobile strategy assessment and direction for over 14 key
customers. Prior to Mobiquity, Chris held project management roles at the Seasteading Institute, Altisource Labs,
and Ricoh Business Solutions. Chris was also the founder of Trident where he coordinated project development
efforts of 54 consumer good products from concept through introduction into major international markets. Chris
hold a BS in Naval Architecture from the Webb Institute and an MBA from Babson College.

Mike Welsh
Group Creative Director
Mike joined Mobiquity in 2013 to help create user experiences that will drive adoption and increase bottom-line
performance by delivering on customer demand. Prior to Mobiquity, Mike served as the VP, Group Director of
Experience Architecture at True Action (an eBay company) helping set the product direction for several major
product brands. Prior to that, Mike spent six years at expensewatch.com as the EVP Product Strategy and
Management. Mike has a BS degree in Graphic Design and Sociology from Drexel University.

Source: LinkedIn Web site, http://www.linkedin.com/, accessed July 2015.

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This document is authorized for use only by Linh Nguyen in CIS 2016 Spring taught by Mark Lee Ford, Temple University Japan Campus from January 2016 to July 2016.