Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Using iPhone as a Bedside Clock

I charge my phone in a stand next to my bed, so I've tried a number of apps that turn the screen into a bedside clock. Unfortunately, they're all way too bright, and if you crank the brightness way down, the time's hard to see.

But I found a $3 app called Disappearing Bedside Clock, and it's perfect. The screen remains dark, but if you wave your hand anywhere near it, and/or tap the surface it's sitting on, the time appears, for a configurable number of seconds before fading back to black. I didn't even know iPhones had these sensors!

You can't set an alarm, strangely, but the developer says iOs handles alarms better than 3rd party apps are allowed to, so he suggests letting Siri (i.e. the native "Clock" app) handle wake-ups. One problem with that is that you're stuck with a 9 minute snooze interval (read this fascinating exploration of that odd interval). Apple won't let you configure it.

My favorite 3rd party alarm clock app is Wake. The problem (to loop back to the top) is that it's either too bright or unreadable. But the wake-up sounds are awesome (here's a discussion of native wake up sound options on iPhone)

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