The WeatherCenter (also TWC) is a U.S. cable & satellite TV network since June 1st 1980, that broadcasts weather forecasts & weather-related news 24-hours a day. In addition to it's cable TV programming, TWC also provides forecasts for terrestrial & satellite radio stations, newspapers & websites & maintains an extensive online presence @ wxcenter.com.
The WeatherCenter debuted it's HD simulcast on September 26th, 2007. It has it's headquarters next to NNC's HQ in Downtown Atlanta
Main article: History of The WeatherCenter
The WeatherCenter was founded in 1979 & was launched on June 1st, 1980 under current owners, WMFL Corporation
TWC uses special proprietary equipment that inserts local weather forecasts & warning information if it's viewed on a cable TV system. The original WC-Star technology has been upgraded on most cable systems to the WC-WX-Star, including Vocal Local to announce the current conditions, weather bulletins & the detailed local forecast. Satellite & IPTV viewers originally saw only a roundup of local TWC forecasts for major cities across the U.S., as well as satellite & radar images & severe weather watch & warning maps when active. However satellite customers with newer systems or interactive receivers have the choice of 'roundups' or local forecasts. For both cable & satellite viewers, Smooth Jazz music plays in the background during these segments.
The WeatherCenter produces a service, based on modified versions of WC-Star technology called WeatherCenter 24/7, on which a separate channel constantly displays local & regional conditions & forecasts along with The WeatherCenter's logo & advertisements.
The WeatherCenter is headquartered in Downtown Atlanta, next to NNC's HQ. TWC's sister channel in Canada is Canada's WeatherCenter in English & uses similar technology that is currently in use in the USA
The WeatherCenter's original & most recognized logo was a blue rectangular box that debuted on TWC’s first broadcast on June 1st, 1980. This logo was revised in 1995, with the corners less rounded & the logo slightly flat. The URL text wxcenter.com was permanently added underneath the logo in 2000. On July 10th 2004, the logo was overhauled again, the blue rectangle’s corners are straight with no white trim on the edge & "The WeatherCenter" text is now in title-case & left-justified, similar to Canada's WeatherCenter. A 25th anniversary logo was used in 2005 featuring a white rectangle edged in blue connected to the current logo with "25 Years" inside in blue. A similar logo will be used to celebrate TWC's 30th Anniversary on June 1st, 2010
Local on the 7'sEdit
Main article: Local on the 7's
Since it's inception, The WeatherCenter has incorporated local forecasts using WC-Star computers installed @ cable headends. Until 1995, the forecasts have been played @ various times each hour, but are currently shown @ times ending in "7", hence the title of the local forecasts is "Local on the 7's" (though local forecasts are reduced to once every half-hour when non-forecast programs are aired). With the introduction of the current WC-WX-Star system, traffic information is also incorporated alongside local weather information, in areas that traffic.com (via it's TrafficPulse service) provides traffic data.
WC-Star systems also utilize a Lower Display Line (LDL) on the bottom of the screen during local forecasts & national programming, providing current conditions for a specific location & 3 towns within 15 miles, almanac data, forecasts & (in select cities) traffic information on cable headends using the WC-WX-Star system & only current conditions &/or forecasts on cable headends using the WC-XL-Star & older models
Radio & newspaper presenceEdit
The WeatherCenter provides forecasts for Fantasy Satellite Radio satellite radio services in the United States. Both services run regional forecasts on 1 station & have a block of combined local weather & traffic stations for major metropolitan areas.
TWC also has content partnerships with a number of local radio stations in the USA to provide local forecasts, using announcers separate from the TV service. For some affiliates, TWC actually provides a limited amount of LIVE coverage during local severe weather (with the Georgia-based announcers connected via ISDN). Distribution of TWC radio content is currently handled by WMFL Radio.
Similarly, TWC also provides weather reports for a number of US newspapers, including a 1-page national forecast for The American
TWC provides numerous customized forecasts for online users, including home & garden & event planning forecasts. They also provide WAP access for mobile phone users, desktop widgets for quick reference by computer users & customized weather feeds for individual websites. They follow a 2-tiered service model, with the free service bearing advertisements & their pay ("Desktop Max") service lacking ads & having enhanced radar & mapping functions. Cell Phone customers can even have their local forecast sent to their mobile handsets from TWC for a fee via SMS by sending a text message with their ZIP code to 42278 which spells 4cast. Other services include Yahoo!, in which the weather pages are produced by TWC
The WeatherCenter-HD (TWC-HD) is a 1080i HD simulcast of The WeatherCenter that was launched on September 26th, 2007. DirecTV was the 1st provider to add it. At that time, no programming was actually presented in HD, except for a national "satellite" version of the Local on the 7's
Throughout the final months of 2007 to the early months of 2008, various cable companies had started to add The WeatherCenter-HD to their cable lineups, including Boston, MA; Austin, TX; San Antonio, TX & Baton Rouge, LA markets. It was added to DISH Network systems on May 13th, 2008. Recently, Comcast began adding the channel in some select markets like Chicago, IL. Time Warner Cable & Cablevision, both of which serve the New York Metropolitan Area have also recently picked up the HD channel in late July of 2008. No WC-Star currently serves the HD feed, but Cablevision New York viewers get an HD forecast produced by TWC's master control in Atlanta. DirecTV added Local on the 7's to it's HD feed on September 29th, 2009.
TWC began studio HD programming on June 2nd, 2008. The new HD studio features various environmentally-friendly technologies. All of TWC's schedule is currently in HD
- WeatherCenter Sunrise (4:00-7:00 AM)
- WeatherCenter AM (7:00-10:00 AM)
- WeatherCenter Midday (10:00 AM-1:00 PM)
- WeatherCenter Afternoon (1:00-5:00 PM)
- WeatherCenter Evening (5:00-9:00 PM)
- WeatherCenter Night-Time (9:00 PM-1:00 AM)
- WeatherCenter Overnight (1:00-4:00 AM)
- Weekend programs have the same titles, but with Weekend in it
- "You need to know the Weather" (1980-1985)
- "You Need The WeatherCenter, For Everything You Do" (June of 1985-March of 1990)
- "You Need Us: The WeatherCenter, For Everything You Do" (June of 1985-March of 1990: was used ONLY in promos)
- "Weather You Can Always Turn To" (March of 1990-March of 1996: also currently used on the NOAA Weather Network)
- "No Place on Earth Has Better Weather than TWC" (March of 1996-March of 2001)
- "Bringing Weather to America's Homes" (March of 2001-June of 2008: This slogan is still used on wxcenter.com & certain other materials, e.g. mailing labels)
- "America's #1 Weather Network" (June of 2008-present)
Hurricane, severe weather & winter coverage slogansEdit
- "Keeping You Ahead of the Storm" (used occasionally since the late 1990's)
- "Your Winter Weather Network" (January of 2000-present)
- "Your Hurricane Network" (2000 season-present)
- "Your Severe Weather Network" (March of 2000-present)
- "Your Winter Weather, Hurricane & Severe Weather Network: The WeatherCenter" (January of 2000-present: ONLY currently used in several TWC promos)
- "Storm Alert" (2002-present: mostly used during hurricane coverage)