No, your smartphone probably doesn't have a thermometer function
How reliable are temperature measurement applications?
There are very few smartphones with thermometers. On conventional Android and iOS devices, however, it is almost impossible to find.
While it is possible to use your smartphone to find out the temperature in a room, it is not through a thermometer function.
Some applications promise to turn your smartphone into a thermometer. However, user reviews show that their effectiveness is far from proven. The reason is simple: a smartphone does not have a built-in temperature sensor, so these applications use weather data based on the GPS position of the device.
To sum up, you will get the same results with an application specifically dedicated to measuring the ambient temperature as with the original weather widget.
Why your smartphone can't measure room temperature on its own
There are several reasons why a few smartphones are not equipped with a thermal sensor. The first reason is the price. Both manufacturers and consumers do not consider it necessary to add this element.
Secondly, it takes up space and at a time when the battery takes up most of the phone to increase capacity and limit size, this is not an option.
Then there is the fact that each component of the smartphone changes temperature during use, so thermal insulation becomes an issue. The energy creates a lot of heating and cooling inside and sometimes even outside the smartphone.
To sum up, if your smartphone is not one of the exceptions, i.e. a device dedicated to travellers and equipped with a thermometer, you will not be able to obtain the exact ambient temperature of the room you are in.
The control of heating and energy consumption becomes complicated if you only have data unless the sensor is in your living room, which would be amazing!
So what is the solution to having the precise room temperature in your room? The connected weather station.
Your smartphone can tell you the precise room temperature of every room in your house… if it is connected to the Netatmo Smart Weather Station ! Simply install the connected station in your home and you have access to air quality, temperature, pressure, humidity, and many other weather data in your home.
Measuring room temperature with a connected weather station
Without a thermal sensor to directly measure the ambient temperature in the room, the smartphone cannot provide this data accurately. Unless…
All you have to do is connect it to a device designed for this (and many other weather features): the connected weather station.
OK, so technically it's no longer the smartphone that "measures" the ambient temperature. It doesn't do it on its own, it just gives you easy access to the room temperature measured by the weather station. But the fact of transcribing this data (among others humidity, indoor pollution, atmospheric pressure, etc.) makes your smartphone the device on which you have the ambient temperature.
This makes it possible to control the heating, save energy and optimise the heat.
The Netatmo Smart Weather Station turns your smartphone into a thermometer in a way. What phone can boast a built-in hygrometer, thermometer, anemometer, sound level meter, and barometer? Almost none, except if it is connected to the weather station or a smart weather station!
To sum up, avoid apps and turn to connected weather stations instead… or apps that work with a sensor
Unfortunately, the many applications that promise to make your smartphone an effective thermometer cannot be trusted. If it's not one of the exceptions that have a thermal sensor by default (and they are very rare), you won't be able to benefit from this feature with any greater accuracy than on your phone's weather widget.
So if you want to use your smartphone to find out what the temperature is like inside your home, especially in a specific room, you have no choice but to measure the room temperature with a device that sends the data to your smartphone.
This is the case with connected weather stations, which in addition to the room temperature, give you the humidity level, the indoor pollution level, the pressure, the outdoor weather, and much more.
Your smartphone may not turn into a thermometer as it will depend on the weather station to collect the ambient temperature, but at least you will have easy access to the information.
But there is one last solution you can use for measuring room temperature with your smartphone.
Some applications work with a sensor that plugs into the outside of the phone. These are therefore reliable, but they are pricey and are sometimes difficult to find.
However, they allow your smartphone to measure the temperature in an accurate and localised way.
It is therefore technically impossible to measure room temperature with most smartphones. The best solution is not to install an application that promises the impossible but to use a connected weather station. It is the best way to know about your room temperature! You can improve your heating control, reduce your energy consumption and also install a heating controller if necessary. It all depends on the felt temperature!