AlarmPad review: A glimpse at the future of alarm apps

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Waking up in the morning is a drag. We’ve seen some spectacular alarm clock solutions over the years, like Clocky, the alarm clock on wheels that jumps off your nightstand and blazes around the room chaotically until you get out of bed. Maybe chasing your alarm clock around the room isn’t what you had in mind at 6:30 in the morning. Maybe all you need is a better alarm clock app.

Enter AlarmPad

alarm options

The newly released AlarmPad app promises alarm clock advancement through contextual alarms (and it won’t jump off your nightstand and roll away).

The idea is that instead of being woken up simply by a classic alarm ringtone, you can choose from a number of different audible alerts: ringtone; audible text-to-speech reading of the time; the weather outside; a numerical total of your appointments for that day; or a self-penned message.

It’s all visually delivered on-screen, and/or read to you out loud, accompanied by wafting music.

You can set (and preview) your alarm to contain contextual data specific to the alarm time.

It’s clever.

Do you need a new alarm app?

alarm setting

AlarmPad settings

I found the app’s interface pleasant. So nice, in fact, that I had to do a double-take and check a few native Android default alarm clocks, to verify that they were all as dull as I remembered. They were, even in a recent KitKat variant.

AlarmPad’s ambiance is created by an optional transparent background—device wallpaper shows through the text and icons. It’s familiarly restful, though hopefully not so restful that you go back to sleep.

Supposedly, you should be able to answer back to mute the alarms, but I couldn’t get voice recognition to work on multiple devices. And I’d like to hear the actual appointment headers, rather than just number of appointments.

alarm background

AlarmPad’s sem-transparent text is pleasant, and not too jarring first thing in the morning.

It’s time for Alarm 2.0. We have all this power in these always-connected, always-nearby devices, and the alarm functions just...make noise. AlarmPad is a step forward, but it needs little refinement.

Rating: 4/5

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