|Broadcast area||Selected areas nationwide/selected cable providers|
|Picture format||480i (SDTV)|
|Launched||March 31, 1999|
|Closed||December 12, 2022|
|Former names||Weatherscan Local (1999–2003)|
Weatherscan was an American digital cable and satellite television network owned by Allen Media Group. A spinoff of The Weather Channel, Weatherscan featured uninterrupted local weather information in graphical format on a continuous loop that was generated by an IntelliStar unit installed at the cable provider's headend; unlike The Weather Channel, Weatherscan did not feature on-air talent of any kind.
The channel launched on March 31, 1999, as Weatherscan Local. Originally, Weatherscan operated five collective services for local weather information: Weatherscan Local featured animated weather information with a complete local weather segment every two minutes; Weatherscan Radar featured a continuous Doppler radar loop, along with severe weather advisories when warranted; Weatherscan Plus (debuted April 30, 1999) featured activity-specific forecasts for golf, skiing, boating, beachgoing, and business and leisure travel; Weatherscan Plus Traffic (May 31, 1999) featured the same format as Weatherscan Plus with the inclusion of traffic information; Weatherscan Español, which launched with Weatherscan Plus Traffic, was a Spanish-language version of Weatherscan Plus allowing regional or international weather information.
The IntelliStar unit used by Weatherscan was configured differently from that used by The Weather Channel, featuring different graphics and additional forecast products, with information running on a continuous basis. Vocal Local, a pre-recorded narration function installed in the IntelliStar system—which utilizes a different narration track than that used on The Weather Channel's Local on the 8s forecast segments, featuring a female announcer—introduces several of the segments.
At its prime, Weatherscan was available in many major markets around the United States, though its availability was not as widespread as that of parent network The Weather Channel. Many cable providers offered Weatherscan on their digital tiers, although a few providers carry Weatherscan on their basic tier (where The Weather Channel is also offered). In 2011, Dish Network became the first satellite provider to add Weatherscan. Most cable providers that carried the channel had it identified as "Local weather" on their interactive channel guides (Weatherscan was also classified on TV Guide Channel as "Local weather" and/or under various abbreviations of such).
Verizon FiOS dropped Weatherscan, along with parent network The Weather Channel, from its lineup at 12:00 a.m. on March 10, 2015 after the two parties were unable to come to terms on a new carriage agreement. The service has been replaced by the local WeatherBug "widget" in some markets. No public announcement was made regarding this issue until over 12 hours after the discontinuation. Verizon said its reason for dropping the services was because many customers turn to the internet and mobile apps for weather any time of day.
While the domestic IntelliStars were decommissioned and replaced by newer IntelliStar 2 units on November 16, 2015, the modified IntelliStar units continued to run Weatherscan until December 12, 2022.
On March 22, 2018, Byron Allen's Entertainment Studios announced its intent to acquire The Weather Channel's television assets from an NBCUniversal/Blackstone Group partnership. The actual value is undisclosed, but was reported to be around $300 million; the channel's non-television assets, which were separately sold to IBM two years prior, were not included in the sale.
In a letter to the National Cable Television Cooperative, which most remaining cable affiliates are part of, dated September 12, 2022, Weather Group Television announced that they would be terminating the Weatherscan service no later than December 9, 2022, with a preference to take it off the air sooner rather than later. Declining viewership, the availability of weather conditions and forecasts through computers as well as smartphone weather apps, and aging equipment were cited as the main reasons that the channel went offline, making the operations of the once iconic service outdated and no longer necessary. Those same reasons ultimately led to major television providers dropping the channel previously between March 2015 and December 2017. In addition, Weatherscan did not broadcast in HD, which is nearly general for television news and weather in the United States by the time of the shut-down announcement.
The remaining providers exercised their options to air their in-house local weather services, switch to similar networks such as AccuWeather Network, WeatherNation, or Fox Weather; or delete the channel space entirely. However, Weatherscan has largely been replaced in function with Local Now.
Weatherscan was officially discontinued on December 12, 2022, three days after the original end-of-service date.
Weatherscan displayed a variety of forecast products that show different types of weather information, some of which are not included on certain providers.
|Used by all providers carrying the service, the segment provided local weather data, including the current observations, a local radar loop, a text-based 36-hour forecast, and a five-day forecast. This segment was mainly used for one city, but in some markets, the forecast segments incorporate multiple cities.|
|Local Doppler Radar
|A one-minute continuous loop of Doppler radar imagery over the course of three hours. During severe weather situation, affiliates could choose to only show this segment or does so alongside the Local Forecast segment.|
|This segment, which was available in most markets, shows flight arrival, departure delays, and weather conditions for up to four airports within the headend's service area; a list of delays and current conditions for 8 selected major airports throughout the United States is also included.|
|Available in most markets, this segment featured a map featuring overall national weather pattern throughout the upcoming daypart (set to be current day's evening and next day's morning at around 4:00 a.m. and p.m. respectively), two-day forecast maps for the surrounding region and a three-day "destination forecast" for 9 selected U.S. cities.|
|Carried on only a few headends, this segment displaying the forecasted weather conditions and temperatures for select cities around the world.|
|Weather and Your Health
|This segment featured health-related forecasts for the area, including air quality, pollen and ultraviolet indexes. A slide or two illustrating safety information relevant to the current season concluded the segment.|
|Ski and Snow
|This segment displayed snowfall forecasts and current skiing conditions (including present snowpack and snow density information) for select ski resorts throughout the country.|
|This segment provided weather information for up to 4 golf courses and resorts within the area, as well as a golf index (gauging the forecast's impact on golfing activity) and a "tee time forecast" segment.|
|Carried on only a few headends, this segment included forecasts tailored toward gardening and a "watering needs index" (gauging the forecast's impact on one's need to water lawn/garden), as well as maps showing forecasted precipitation amounts (both in the past and next 24 hours) and drought severity.|
|Boat and Beach
|Available only in coastal locations, this segment displayed marine forecasts, tidal information and forecasted surfing conditions.|
|This segment displayed a live map showing traffic flow across the metropolitan area (red indicates jams, yellow indicates slow traffic, green indicates little to no traffic); a text-based construction report, and the average speed and trip time for major highways. Traffic Pulse provides the information.|
During the early 2000s, when the channel's segments were generated mainly by WeatherStar XL systems, up to five different products, excluding the local product, could be chosen for display.
Note: "Domestic IntelliStar" refers to STARs that output content for The Weather Channel.
|March 31, 1999||Weatherscan Local debuts, showing only a two-minute local forecast in a repetitive fashion. Only one song was used for each segment, a two-minute cut of the first track (dubbed "Fair Weather" by The Weather Channel) from a suite of music composed by Atlanta-based jazz artist Trammell Starks.|
|2001||Forecast data for Weatherscan Local's forecasts begin to be sourced directly from The Weather Channel, instead of the National Weather Service. This change occurred on Weatherscan Local earlier than the WeatherStar systems used on TWC.|
|February 17, 2005||
|September 27, 2005||
|April 2006||HiRAD technology is introduced on some Weatherscan-powered IntelliStar systems.|
|December 12, 2006||
|March 11, 2010||The weather icons change once again to more realistic icons, switching to a variant of the 2006 design.|
|December 8, 2010||The traffic information segment is permanently discontinued after The Weather Channel is unable to renew its contract with Traffic Pulse. Prior to this, traffic information had already been discontinued in some regions for quite some time.|
|March 9, 2015||Verizon FiOS discontinues carriage of both Weatherscan and The Weather Channel.|
|June 24, 2015||Dish Network discontinues carriage of Weatherscan.|
|November 10, 2015||
|March 29, 2016||The Weather Channel logo is removed from Weatherscan.|
|May 14, 2016||Cox Communications discontinues carriage of Weatherscan.|
|July 11, 2016||
|March 2017||Wintry precipitation indicators are added to the Radar/Satellite loop.|
|December 5, 2017||Weatherscan is discontinued on Comcast Xfinity, although Comcast dropped the service earlier in the year in some regions.|
|Late 2021||The Weather Channel announces that they have discontinued supporting or replacing all remaining Weatherscan IntelliStar units, signaling the gradual end of service for Weatherscan.|
|December 12, 2022||Weatherscan is permanently discontinued.|
When Weatherscan Local debuted in 1999, the channel maintained a national feed that was used for satellite and smaller cable providers that could not afford a secondary and more technologically advanced WeatherStar system to use for a local Weatherscan feed. The national feed, branded as simply Weatherscan, debuted in July 1998, and ran current temperatures and extended forecasts for select cities throughout the United States, as well as national and regional radar images. There is uncertainty as to whether or not the national version was discontinued; however, since Weatherscan Local simplified its name to "Weatherscan" in 2003, it is likely the national feed was discontinued around that time.
A new Weatherscan feed launched on June 29, 2011, for Dish Network subscribers, replacing the short-lived service The Weather Cast that had been founded as a replacement for The Weather Channel as a result of a May 2010 carriage dispute with the satellite provider; the Weatherscan feed provides regionalized information for cities within 125 miles of a given area, and is delivered in the same manner as the Weatherscan systems on cable providers. Dish Network dropped Weatherscan on June 24, 2015, while WeatherNation took place for regional viewers.
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