Arawella’s Smart Alarm app, now featuring Christmas songs, serves multiple functions – some better than others. You can now wake up to the sound of Christmas music everyday this December! Here’s a look at the design and features and Smart Alarm clock app for iPhone.
Features of Smart Alarm Clock
Smart Alarm’s first function is to monitor your sleep phases, “determining exactly when your body is most ready to wake up.” While there isn’t exactly an FDA stamp of approval on these claims, the app does a good job detecting your movements as you lay in bed. To use this function, you must place your device, iPhone or iPad, face down on your bed while you sleep. I was certainly wary of accidentally knocking my iPad off of my bed, but thankfully it’s still alive and well. Still, for users with smaller beds, users who share their beds, or user who move around a lot in the night, this app may not be for you.
The app’s second function was my favorite: audio tracks to fall asleep and wake up to. The small list of tracks that come with the app should suit most purposes, but they can be expanded with paid audio packages such as ‘Guided meditation,’ ‘Favorite Classical Tunes,’ ‘Favorite Lullabies,’ and ‘Relaxation Sounds,’ now in ‘Nature’ and ‘Urban’ flavors.
The newest audio package, ‘Christmas songs,’ might be just what you need to get into the holiday spirit from the second you wake up to the moment your head hits the pillow. Of course you can also add your own iPod tracks, which gives you even more control.
Most of the tracks that come with the Smart Alarm Clock app sound great. If you’ve ever used a white-noise machine, or slept on a beach, you know how much sound can affect your ability to relax and fall asleep easily. From ‘Thunderstorm’ to ‘Rainforest music,’ the tracks included in Smart Alarm are soothing and effective. On their loudest settings, some of the tracks sound a bit tinny through iPhone speakers, but at half or three-quarters volume they sound just fine.
The app’s final function records sleep sounds in the night, whether it’s your snoring or other noises that might disturb your sleep without your knowledge. The app also provides a graph of your sleep patterns to help you work out that nagging insomnia, or get you back to a regular sleep schedule.
Smart Alarm Clock Design
The app looks great on iPhone, but its aesthetic appeal on iPad is hindered by the magnification effect of porting a native iPhone app to an iPad. While it runs in a clean high-resolution that supports the new iPad’s retina display, the black edges along the sides of the app and the large cumbersome buttons look rather awkward on the larger iPad screen. A native iPad version of this application would look great, allowing users to see more options at a time and larger graphs of their sleep cycles.
Learning to navigate through the application takes a few minutes, but overall, the designers laid out its features efficiently and effectively. Users can adjust ‘Chill-out’ and ‘Wake-up’ track volume separately, as well as their durations. The easy-to-use alarm function reflects the scrolling selectors familiar to iOS users who’ve used Apple’s built-in clock application.
While the design suffers on iPad due to magnification and the sleep monitoring function seems restricted to users who aren’t worried about accidentally crushing their devices or knocking them off of their beds, Arawella’s Smart Alarm Clock app is a great way to get your sleep cycle back in order. Whether you rely on the information the app collects while you sleep, or you just need an alarm clock and white noise machine, this app should do the trick.