Alarm: the one phone feature predating mobile internet and color screens, and as useful as any other feature to this day. Some of us find it hard to wake up each morning and getting to your ‘office’ on time is just as important if you are working from home as it is if you leave the house for work. Here’s a few alarm clock apps we recommend for Android, iOS, and Windows Phone 7 users.
Sleep Cycle For a non-traditional but highly effective wake up call, Sleep Cycle definitely has a lot going its way. The app monitors how you sleep by using the iDevices accelerometer to gauge how deep a sleep you’re in. The app then uses a light phase of your sleep cycle and gently wake you up all within a half hour time set for wakeup; instead of being jarred awake, you’re gently nudged into the day. Several tranquil chimes can be used to accompany the light, alongside the option to tap into your own music library. $1
Clock Pro The Swiss army knife of iOS apps offers a multitude of clock modes. Chess timer, stop watch, music alarms, nature times, sleep timer, egg timer, world clock, charming analog clock (which I got a kick out of), metronome, count down clock and a countdown clock for projects. The main difference that sets this app apart from most of the other alarm apps is that it doesn’t need to be open to work should you require that option. There are literally over a hundred alarm apps that all look the same and do less and require the app to be open and propped on your bedside. $1
Gentle Alarm Gentle Alarm is Android’s soothing solution to the wake up call. To start, the interface is completely up to you with different font and color choices. Aside from the standard features such as using songs from the devices library and a large snooze button, Gentle Alarm has a pre-alarm feature, chiming half an hour before the desired wake up time. As implied by the name, the alarm is played lightly and can either wake you up or elevates from deep sleep to prepare for the inevitible alarm. Should a silent, personal alarm be required it has a vibration only option that also increases in cruelty to shake off the Sandmans work. $3
Alarm Clock Xtreme We know ourselves best but are we prepared to diminish the duration in between snooze buttons to force ourselves to get up? Alarm Clock Xtreme has a lot of customising options and one that has us especially intrigued is to set a maximum number of snoozes, decrease the duration between them and turning off the alarm by answering a math question. Additional features include increasing volume alarm, random song alarm and shake to snooze. $2
Windows Phone 7
Night Stand Clock They say that simple is best and if all that’s needed is a reliable bedside alarm that’s charming too look at then the search is over. From an option of 8 themes to choose from and a sleep timer set to your own music, Night Stand Clock is an invaluable partner at night and won’t steer you wrong. The interface is very nifty with a slide to brighten/dim the screen built right into the app. Should the need for an unscheduled walk in the night arise, it also has a flashlight feature that’s activated with a quick shake of the phone. Truthfully Night Stand Clock’s not fancy with over the top features like the others on this list however what is there is done with style, grace and is easily reachable with an incredibly intuitive user input system that’s natural with human movement. $1
SleepMaster To compare SleepMaster to Sleep Cycle would be fair since they both have the same idea of using the accelerometer to monitor sleep patterns. However I give the edge to SleepMaster in the looks department. The user interface is absolutely gorgeous and streamlined in a clean manner that draws you in. Sensitivity can be adjusted for those who barely move an inch overnight or are all over the place. Going over Sleep Cycle it features a sleep relax function that plays soothing music or an audiobook / music from the Zune library to help us get to the land of nod for those restless nights. $2
By Jason Rodway.
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