The BreezoMeter app is a fun, intuitive and professional way to get to get real time outdoor air quality levels at your specific location as simple as checking the weather.
Runs offline: no
Last update: Android 26/12/2016 (v. 2.8) – iOS 10/03/2016 (v. 1.5)
Website of the developer: Breezometer
Notes: article updated on 22/11/2017
BreezoMeter is an application that lets you know the air quality of your street or the exact point of the city where you find (it is only valid for urban areas). Currently and according to information provided by Ziv Lautman, Director of Marketing of the company, the application provides accurate real-time data for more than 7000 cities worldwide. As they detail, unlike other tools based on sensors readings that are not always located at the same point that the user, Breezometer employs an algorithm for data analysis that takes into account dispersion and flow of the pollution, crossing the values obtained by the monitoring devices with weather information and other sources (presence of Saharan dust, for example).
Another important aspect to highlight is that BreezoMeter has a specific air quality index that differs from the one used by other applications. As they argue in their web, the AQI index is based on local air quality standards, and in it, each country sets different limits on the concentration of pollutants, creating disparities in the interpretation of data. In order to standardize the values, they have created a new index with 5 categories ranging from zero (poor air quality) to 100 (excellent air quality) that serves to all countries equally.
The application has a geolocation option which, when active, informs the user of the air quality in the area in which is located. However and through the loupe located at the top, you can insert your city of interest. As long as data are available, the elephant that serves as an icon will indicate the air quality in relation to the index specified above. If you move around the screen, you will see that the app also offers tips on activities or precautions you should take depending on the level of contamination, specifying which is the dominant pollutant (“More” option gives you more information about the item in question). However, one of the major utilities of BreezoMeter is the map. As you move through it, you’ll see how the values and colors showing the concentration of the main pollutant change between nearby streets (the differences are not particularly striking). Also to note the existence of a drop-down menu (next to the loupe) that provides information on the quality index, help, option to share on social networks and a section of company presentation.
It should be noted that Breezometer has recently partnered (November 2017) with AllTrails, a US-based company dedicated to curate maps, photos and reviews of outdoor trails. From now on, this information will also be supplemented by data on air quality in the area where the activity is to be carried out. In this sense, and as Ron Schneidermann, CMO at Alltrails, says, taking into account that «air pollution becoming an increased health concern, this data is integral to informing our users of local air quality conditions and keeping outdoor enthusiasts healthy while out on the trails».
Images: Screenshots 12/06/2016. © Breezometer
As the creators of BreezoMeter explain in the section “About us”, the application was conceived when they observed that the real estate market did not include detailed data on air pollution in cities. This variable is becoming increasingly determinative to choose one or another area of residence and also influences in the cost of ownership, being one of the attributes that are considered in the estimation of hedonic price.
While it is necessary to point out that pollution levels vary even between the two sidewalks of a street, BreezoMeter represents a qualitative leap compared with the level of detail of information provided by other applications. However, the app focuses exclusively on the pollutant that predominates, not offering information on other gases whose accumulation can degenerate into a synergistic or additive effect (some studies note a synergy between the NO2 and ozone). It would also be interesting to obtain an overview of the entire urban area with the different levels of pollution by color in order to locate easily areas with lower levels of pollution.
Also comment that recently BreezoMeter has established an alliance with Foobot, a device that reports the air quality of indoor environments. In this way, the users of this tool will be able to consult the information about air quality in the street in one application.