Sound the alarm - SunStar

Sound the alarm

By Meg Rivera

IT’S hard to stick to your resolution of getting off on the right foot before your feet even touch the ground. Sure, it’s easy enough to resolve to be earlier on time for things, or to get up in time to squeeze in 30 minutes of cardio. But when it comes to actually sticking to it, I would love to shake hands with anyone who can resist the lure of the snooze button.

We know that a conventional alarm clock only has a single button to buy a few more minutes of sleep. Muscle memory teaches us to reach for it in the mornings, further compounding bad habits.

Technology is starting to wise up though, and alarm clocks are getting smarter. This week we look at three clever apps that force you to peel your lids open and get out of bed in the morning. If you’re going to start the year right, you may as well start it bright and early.

App-Nightstand-CentralApp name: Nightstand Central Free

App developer: Thomas Huntington

Easy to use: Yes. There are no tutorials needed, as all the customisable options can be seen in the single menu on the right.

Available on: iTunes, Google Play

Overall comment: This application is the least flashy of the three reviewed this week. It seems to run on the concept of customising how you want to wake up. There are features available to show you the weather, temperature and white noise to ease you into consciousness. Nothing too fancy, but nothing boring either. A dependable app. Three stars out of five.

App-Math-AlarmApp name: Math Alarm

App developer: Ken Development

Easy to use: This needs a tutorial and a few minutes of fiddling around before you can understand what it does. But once you crack the UI, you should be fine after that.

Available on: iTunes, Google Play

Overall comment: I will admit, I was rather mystified at the initial home screen. I had to Google a quick tutorial to be able to use this one properly. However, what it does offer is a brilliant way of forcing your eyes open and kick starting your brain into gear. You need to solve a math problem before the alarm shuts off. It throws random problems at you as well, so it’s not as if you can memorise the answers either. A great app, but probably not great if you have a roommate. Three clicks out of five.

App-SnoozeApp name: Snooze

App developer: Let Give

Easy to use: After putting in payment details, this app is good to go.

Available on: iTunes

Overall comment: This app got a lot of media attention some time ago for its underlying concept. For every time you hit the “snooze” button, the app pledges $0.25 to the charity Let Give. This was the brainchild of several independent app developers working together to provide a new way to raise funds. But to us, this is a surefire way to get us out of bed, lest we get charged more money for nine more minutes of sleep. Original and pretty darned good. Four clicks out of five.

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