Electronic Design

Consumer Electronics Boost Preparedness

Cell phones and Global Positioning Systems (GPS) are obvious and easily accessible tools for consumers, but new products are popping up.

One example is the most recent version of My-Cast. This mobile weather service developed by Digital Cyclone lets cell-phone users track tropical storms and hurricanes by navigating through their wireless carrier's "Get It Now" cell-phone feature. For a service fee of $3.95 a month, consumers can see the projected path of a hurricane in real time with satellite cloud loops focused directly on the eye of the storm.

Other features of My-Cast 5.0 include NEXRAD radar loops that show the speed and direction of approaching weather, visible and infrared satellite imagery, plus hourly and extended forecasts of up to seven days. Users can zoom into and pan across high-resolution weather maps centered on any location in the continental U.S. Favorite locations can be saved and new locations easily added. Dynamic graphics change with the weather, displaying current conditions, including temperature, precipitation, and cloud cover.

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