Nice Move: The Weather Channel Buys Weather Underground To Sharpen Focus On Digital

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Smart move, this: The Weather Channel has acquired pioneering online weather service Weather Underground for an undisclosed sum, the companies announced today. The deal is expected to close in several weeks.

The Atlanta, Georgia-based The Weather Channel has long had a strong brand name, wide reach, and big revenues, but I’ve personally found its web and mobile presence (centered around Weather.com and its related apps) to be pretty wanting. The 17-year-old Weather Underground, meanwhile, runs Wunderground.com, easily one of the best digital weather forecasting and tracking websites out there, along with a suite of solid mobile apps. This deal will put Weather Underground’s awesome technology to use on a much bigger stage, bringing better information to a large number of people — which is almost always a good thing.

According to a blog post written by Weather Underground co-founder Jeff Masters, Weather Underground will continue to run Wunderground.com as an independent site after the deal closes. Here is how he explained the planned integration:

The Weather Channel is committed to keeping the Weather Underground brand and the web site in its current form. Weather Underground CEO Alan Steremberg will remain in charge, and our meteorologists and developers will continue to create the ground-breaking weather products that we’re renowned for. The plan is to make both wunderground.com and weather.com stronger, by sharing content and infrastructure. Many Weather Underground features, such as our Personal Weather Station data, WunderMap, and my blog, are scheduled to also appear on the weather.com web site in the coming months.