December 9 2020 update
Thank you all for your ongoing support, and happy 16th birthday to Turbulence Forecast! We have some exciting news to share with you. The age of the site code has made it difficult to rollout all of the new features we have wanted to bring to you this year, so we ask for just a little more patience. We are pivoting a little bit in our approach to improvements. Early 2021, all code will be ripped out and done from scratch, and the end result (at first) is a site that looks exactly the same, but is far easier to maintain.
Everything that is currently on the site will remain free and largely ad free, just as it is right now. Here's what's coming up early 2021 after the new base code is rewritten:
- Refresh our two existing in-house maps to an all new design with more robust processing. These will remain free.
- Bringing you an all new product, our proprietary 36 hour future cast maps. You'll be able to look at any region in the world and see an easy to use color-coded map of expected turbulence. This map will require a paid subscription. As I said before, all currently existing maps will remain free, and will not require an account to access. These maps will be similar to the maps we used to be able to license, and that many of you enjoyed.
- The recurring fees from our subscription maps make it possible to offer everything else we currently and will continue to offer for free, with minimal ads.
- A rewrite of our forecast by email service.
And now for some bad news for about 15% of our site visitors. We are shelving plans to bring an Android app for now. I certainly understand the need and want for it, but our Apple / Android split has dropped from 80/20 to 85/15, and is continuing to dwindle. We will revisit this based on revenues from our premium map subscribers and recurring donation support, but probably not until late 2021 at the earliest. We will continue to have a robust and good responsive website.
As for our Apple audience, the current app is in a very good state and we will continue to support it, and we will make sure it works and will provide updates as needed.
Finally, I understand that many of you may be leery of a subscription based product, but revenues from that make it possible to bring you maps that don't exist anywhere else, and also make it possible for the rest of the site to be free and free of obnoxious ads. Think about how many sites these days are laden with ads; that's not a direction I want to go.
Thank you for your support, now that we have a better plan in place changes should be much easier to make. Have a great holiday season.
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