Smartphones have disrupted a lot of old school technology – the humble alarm clock being one of them. Few people under 30 own an alarm clock, and I’m sure many don’t even know what an alarm clock is.

Even for the over-30 set, a lot of us rely on our phone to wake up. But is it the best way? The alarm clock was a specialist device – it told time and woke us up. That’s it. Our phones are generalist devices. While they can do a lot of things, they may not do each task as well as a specific device made for a specific purpose. That’s why many people still buy cameras, and calculators, and stopwatches, even though their phones can do all of those tasks.

Here’s the thing about alarm clocks: they’ve come a long way. And many of these innovations could be a big improvement over using the alarm function on your phone. Take a look at these two innovative approaches to alarm clocks that could change your mind about your phone alarm:

Ruggie – no more snooze

The MIT Technology Review quotes a study that found that Americans spend 3.5 months of their lives hitting the snooze button. Since studies have shown that our snooze button habit actually hurts us more than helps us, snoozing is truly wasted time that negatively impacts our lives.

Enter the Ruggie, an alarm rug that only turns off when you get up and stand on it for several seconds. It forces you out of bed and keeps you up. Kiss the snooze button goodbye!

See the light

The sound of an alarm can be jarring, even for good-natured morning people. So here’s a twist: an alarm – the Philips Wake-up Light  – that uses a combination of light and sound to wake you up. The light begins with soft dawn red before moving to orange and then yellow. And it starts 30 minutes before your actual wake up time, so you can ease gradually into wakefulness.

Other innovative approaches

This recent article on the Digital Trends site has several other “alternative” alarm clocks. Check them out – there may be one that wakes you up in a whole new way!

Enjoy your day!
Suzana Popovic-Montag