Jun 21, 2013
Warmly is an atypical productivity offering from The Chaos Collective that seemingly wants to make the descriptive term “alarm” a misnomer by changing the way we do alarms and wake patterns in the first place.
The opening user interface is a clear cut celebration of simplicity, and hints at the design elements that govern the entire app.
It gives a scroll-through window for setting the time (with an AM/PM toggle), and nine (9) big square buttons. After a scheduling check-off and an off and ok button, THAT’S IT. Laid against the soothing yellow backdrop, the relatively minimalist viewers are hard not to like.
The nine sound tabs run the gamut. The visual representations cover familair sounds like trains, planes, sporty sounds, cooking, brewing coffee and even a sound selection for cat and dog lovers. After selecting the time, the sound and the weekly recurrence, the app goes to a quiet, dark screen with time prominent. Such a display befits its role as a specialty background alarm.
Warmly is an alarm app that wants to wake you up gradually, and break the paradigm of blaring sirens that invoke panic and dismay. Instead, Warmly uses one of the selected, hopefully familiar noises in an increasing manner that works to help a user build into wakefulness naturally. Specifically, it plays ambient sound worked in with sounds reflecting the weather. As hinted it, it starts off low and then works up higher and higher over several minutes.
Warmly adds in a few more features that increase its utility; it supports the option to use 24 hour time, which appeals to the overly picky like me. It also has an auto shut-off feature, and the requisite snooze after 9 minutes. I also found it possible to change the unit of measure for temperature from Celsius to Fahrenheit.
Much as I like this app, I’d love to see it expand a bit. Maybe the ability to work with the built-in calendar? Or how about the ability to pull in one’s own sound files? Sky is the limit.
I like simple, and I like Warmly a lot. It helps redefine a ubiquitous feature of smartphones, and does that well. Can’t wait to see what else Chaos has up its collective sleeve.