AccuWeather readies launch of streaming information channel

A screen capture of the AccuWeather Channel as it appeared during a broadcast on January 26, 2021. (Graphic by The Desk)

A new streaming video product produced by AccuWeather will launch later this summer, the climate company announced in a press release on Thursday.

The streaming video service, called AccuWeather Now, will offer around-the-clock programming, including global weather forecasts, documentaries and coverage of “extreme and natural events,” AccuWeather said.

“AccuWeather Now will meet a growing demand for weather and climate news and content, and complement AccuWeather’s existing suite of platforms,” a company spokesperson said in a statement.

That existing portfolio of services includes the AccuWeather smartphone and tablet apps, the AccuWeather website and a 24-hour pay television network called the AccuWeather Channel. The company said its current pay television channel reaches 36 million households; it is distributed on AT&T TV, DirecTV, Philo and some small regional cable systems.

It was not clear from the statement released on Thursday if AccuWeather Now will take the place of the AccuWeather Channel on cable, satellite and some premium streaming services or if AccuWeather will distribute the new service on free, ad-supported streamers like Pluto TV, Xumo and Haystack News.

An AccuWeather executive said AccuWeather Now will focus on reaching a younger audience that is accustomed to receiving news and information through digital channels like social media and streaming telvision.

“Since not everyone has access to cable, and with more people becoming increasingly more invested in weather and its impact [on] people, communities and businesses, the launch of AccuWeather Now is a natural extension of our global weather footprint and six decades of expertise,” Sara Katt, the general manager of the AccuWeather Network, said in a statement.

Katt said AccuWeather Now will pull “engaging content” from social media platforms like TikTok, Twitter, Instagram and elsewhere — platforms where ordinary citizens tend to upload clips of extreme weather events and other breaking news with relative speed and ease.

“In addition to breaking weather news, AccuWeather Now will feature, dramatic weather video; stories illustrating the potential impact of forecasted weather on sports, health and other everyday activities;…as well as long-form story telling of major weather events and environmental wonders around the world,” Katt said.

AccuWeather is based in State College, Pennsylvania.