I installed the Sleep Cycle iPhone app about a month ago, so I thought it was time for an update.
Let me share some data:

December 25
December 25
December 26
December 26
December 27
December 28
December 29
December 30
December 31. New Year's eve and some alcohol was involved here.
January 1
January 2
January 3

Here‘s another two weeks worth of data.
Let me know if you know anything about sleep and notice some interesting pattern.
I feel like this app is helping me sleep better, although the only to verify would be with an experiment. It would be nice if the application asks me how I feel in the morning and somehow use that data. Waking up is certainly more pleasant than with my normal alarm clock, but that might also just be because my normal alarm clock is fairly unpleasant.
The application has a thirty minute window in which it can wake you up. I often find that it wakes me up either right at the start or right at the end of that window.
When it wakes me at the start of the window, I tend to “snooze” by setting another alarm clock at the latest moment possible. I still think the app has added value in such a case, as it means I’ll be in less deep sleep when the final alarm goes off. But it does suggest the timing of the app needs improvement.
When I get the chance to sleep in, I either forget to use the app or I set the alarm at some ridiculously late time to ensure it won’t go off. I don’t want to sleep in too long (I can sleep for 12 hours), but I don’t want to wake up at the wrong moment either in the weekend. A thirty minute window is too short, so it would be nice if the app had a weekend mode. It should wake me up at the best moment somewhere after ten hours of sleep.
My current routine is to switch my phone to airplane mode (so no push notification wakes me up), maximize the volume and then set the alarm. In the morning I undo these settings. It would be nice if this was done automatically, but perhaps the iPhone SDK does not allow that.
Because I like to travel, I would like support for multiple beds.
As a final suggestion I would like to be able to analyze my data. For this it would great if I can export my sleep data in as much detail as possible. Of course for this to be useful, there would have to be sites performing such a service.
In the mean time, I’m really looking forward to receiving my WakeMate; a wristband that essentially does the same thing, but I suspect it to be more accurate and the accompanying web service more comprehensive.
That said, Sleep Cycle is a great app!


  1. I actually stopped using SleepCycle after two weeks or so, because of the inadequate timing of the alarm (it usually woke me just at the end of the time window, regardless of my sleep phase) and the whole hassle that’s involved with setting the alarm (airplane mode, etc etc). I’m still keeping the app in case its functionality improves sometime in the future, but right now I’m back to my good old regular iPhone alarm.

  2. Well, I wasn’t too happy about the “good old” regular iPhone alarm either to be honest. It doesn’t warn you when the phone is on vibrate or the volume is too low. It has caused me to oversleep several times.
    I much prefer the alarm on my no-thrills Nokia phone; it makes a lot of noise regardless of the current sound profile.

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