What the Tech? App of the Day: Wakie
Today's App of the Day: An alarm clock that wakes you up with a phone call from a stranger.
No one wants to start their day with the blaring sound of an alarm clock buzzer. You can have your radio alarm clocks too!
There are no fewer than 100 alarm clock apps for iOS and Android devices, including the stock apps that come on the phone. Those will wake you up with the sounds of your favorite songs or a bird chirping. Those are good, but wouldn't it be interesting to get a wake up call from an actual person?
Wakie is an alarm clock app unlike any others. There is a community of thousands of people from around the world using the app. After you set a wake up alarm time, someone in the community will be notified and when the time arrives, someone will call you to say 'good morning.'
Sounds creepy right?
When I tried it my phone rang a few minutes before it was set and there was a lovely sounding young woman on the line.
"Hey...are you up?"
I could see her first name and where she lives. There's also a small profile picture, other than that the phone calls and app are anonymous. The wakeup calls can last up to 1 minute. Kate and I chatted for a few seconds. It was early afternoon in the UK and she was surrounded by people. She told me she had downloaded the app and had only used it a few times.
She wished me a good day and hung up.
Wakie also has options where people can start conversations with strangers using the app. You can ask a question such as "what is your country like and why should I visit?" or "I'd like to sing you a song" (because why not? If you stink who's going to know?)
Anonymous chat apps can be a little weird though. The developer of the app said it is not intended to be a place for people to meet people to ask on dates and there are some comments and calls that are inappropriate. Kate told me after just one day using the app she'd encountered "plenty of pervs".
That's going to be true of any anonymous chat apps. Wakie leaves it up to the community to monitor what's going on and after each call you're asked to report any user who is inappropriate who might be banned from using the app in the future.
Wakie does seem to work. After using it I found I woke up more easily and stayed up rather than hitting a snooze. I don't know if it was because I was sort of anxious to hear the other person's voice and find out where he or she is from, or if I just wanted to wake up enough where I didn't sound like an idiot.
Anyway, hearing someone say 'good morning', or 'get up you're going to be late!', it was a nice start to the day. A lot better than the loud alarm clock sound I'd normally get from a clock.
Wakie is a free app for the iPhone and Android devices.