Rise is a very, very simple alarm clock app for the iPhone. It has support for a single alarm that you set to trigger once or once a day. That’s it.
It’s not the most robust app of its kind, and it’s actually crippled a bit by Apple’s app policies, but it’s still worth checking out. The bold and intelligent use of color, great typography and brilliant gesture-based interface make it the first alarm clock app that makes me excited to use it. So silly, so utilitarian a thing, but something that we do every day and why shouldn’t we enjoy it?
When you launch Rise, you’re presented with a gradient of color and the current time, but the screen is dominated with the alarm time you’re planning on setting. Simply slide the time up and down the screen to set it and tap on top or bottom to fine tune it. As you slide the alarm time, the gradient shifts to represent different times of day.
From a deep blue-black for midnight to the hot, white-blue of the afternoon. It’s a lovely effect that coordinates the time visual with the emotive power of color to give you a real feeling of context. It’s different from any app of its kind I’ve seen.
Swiping up from the bottom exposes settings that allow you to choose from a variety of pleasant tones and to trigger the alarm on a recurring basis. You can also toggle vibration separately from the system settings here. And that’s it. A mono-purpose app, to be sure, but one that meets up well with the idea of the iPhone as an information appliance.
Rise has gained some recognition on the App Store already, as it’s been featured and has moved up the charts in the crowded utility space. And I think that the attention is well deserved, as it’s pretty great. There is one fairly large caveat, however. Because of the rules that Apple enforces for apps, you will not hear the Rise alarm if your device is set to Do Not Disturb. Currently, this is a dealbreaker for me as my phone blows up with notifications all night and it would wake my wife up for sure. I would sleep through the apocalypse, so not really a problem when I’m traveling alone.
If you’re not as notification plagued as me, however, and don’t use the DND setting, then Rise is well worth a look.
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