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Struggling to wake up in the morning? These alarm apps with a twist may help

Should you require something more than just a time and an alarm sound.

GETTING UP EARLY is always a difficult task, especially if you are returning to work after a long break (if you were already back this week, you have our sympathy).

While a different phone alarm isn’t going to solve all your sleeping problems – doing that would require more fundamental changes - their approach to getting you out of bed may help. Here are a few to get you started.

The all-rounder

Gentle Alarm
For: Android
Cost: €2.45

It can look a bit dated in comparison to other apps but the core of Gentle Alarm and the many features included is worth the price.

The level of customisation for alarms, the ability to play music playlists (your own, a radio stream or Spotify music) and solving challenges or simple maths problems to deactivate your alarm makes it one of the best apps of its kind out there.

Gentle Alarm Gentle Alarm / Google Play Gentle Alarm / Google Play / Google Play

Pick the best time to wake up

Sleep Cycle
For: iOS
Cost: Free (€1.99 for premium)

It’s been around a while but Sleep Cycle continues to be one of the best out there. Set your time, allow it to track your sleeping patterns, and it will pick the best time to wake you. The alarm wakes you up within a 30-minute window before your alarm time so you won’t have to worry about oversleeping.

download Sleep Alarm / App Store Sleep Alarm / App Store / App Store

Wake up to Spotify

Alarmify (iOS) or Alarm Clock Xtreme and Timer (Android)
For: iOS, Android
Cost: Free (Alarmify), €1.50 (Alarm Clock Xtreme)

Which one you opt for will depend on the type of smartphone you have but while Alarmify has one main feature (it wakes you up with music from Spotify), Alarm Clock Xtreme has that and many other features worth considering.

It’s quite similar to Gentle Alarm but has other features like increasing your alarm’s volume the longer you leave it on.

9k= Alarmify / App Store Alarmify / App Store / App Store

Wake up by shaking

Wake Alarm Clock
For: iOS
Cost: Free

If the standard methods don’t work, then how about adding a physical action to things? In the case of Wake, you must shake your phone until the metre is filled up if you want to turn off the alarm. If you don’t, the alarm will continue playing.

There are two other methods for waking up which are slap and flip (a large snooze button before turning it around) and a basic swipe for those wanting to keep it simple.

This is a case of try before you apply as you want to make sure you can deactivate it correctly first before you make it your default alarm.

2Q== Wake Alarm Clock / App Store Wake Alarm Clock / App Store / App Store

Wake up with a puzzle

Puzzle Alarm Clock
For: Android
Cost: Free

A straightforward name and a straightforward purpose, this app asks you to solve different types of puzzles (maths, memory, captcha and patterns) and puts five in a row so you have to engage.

Simple and to the point but again, it’s worth trying out first so you know what you’re letting yourself in for.

Puzzle Alarm Clock Puzzle Alarm Clock / Google Play Puzzle Alarm Clock / Google Play / Google Play

Wake up by spinning

SpinMe Alarm Clock
For: iOS, Android
Cost: €1.99 (iOS), Free (Android)

An alarm clock that wakes you up just by making you spin around sounds like the stuff of nightmares (and in some ways it is), but those who just need to move around before they feel awake might find this useful.

Place both thumbs on the screen and spin around a few times to turn it off. This requires a greater degree of caution as spinning around can be disorientating and it’s the only way to turn the alarm off.

9k= SpinMe Alarm Clock / App Store SpinMe Alarm Clock / App Store / App Store

Read: Have trouble getting out of bed in the morning? Try these 9 tricks for waking up early >

Read: Lending your iPhone or iPad out to someone? Guided access is what you need >

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