Advantages and disadvantages of different sleep phase alarm clocks in comparison

aXbo sleep phase alarm clock set for couples

Sleep phase alarm clocks promise to only wake the user when he is in a light sleep phase. To do this, you set the wake-up time at which you have to get up the latest or you can choose a period of time (for example 30 minutes) in which you want to be woken up. Depending on the model, the sleep phase alarm clock then determines in different ways at which point in time before this time an alarm signal is cheapest. In this way, the user gets up refreshed and is not torn from deep sleep - which would usually have a negative effect on the daily form. Here I have summarized a few models for you.

First about the purpose of the sleep phase alarm clock: What are sleep phases and which is the best time to wake me up?

With the term "Sleep phases " three different stages during sleep are distinguished in humans. A complete run takes 1,5 hours. These are the phases in a nutshell:

  • Light sleep phase (almost awake moment)
  • REM phase (rapid eye movement)
  • Deep sleep
Overview of the sleep phases - Graphic: Axbo

On the aXbo website you can find a nice illustration of the sleep phases in an example of a night (graphic: aXbo).

As the names suggest, one should find someone who is in the deep sleep phase do not necessarily wake up, because that is usually the moment after waking up you ask yourself who you are and where the hell you are - everyone has probably experienced it before (I last said when my smoke alarm in the bedroom at 3 a.m. said it would burn (which of course it didn't!) ...). Against that The light sleep phase (with almost awake moments as Axbo calls it) is ideal for waking up refreshed and get up quickly.

The REM phase takes its name from the rapid movement of the eyes; from that, so to speak Rapid Eye Movement. In this phase, dreams are not exclusively, but primarily, dreams. Anyone who has ever woken up from a dream knows that it is not as bad as during the deep sleep phase. This is why a sleep phase alarm clock also uses the REM phase in case of doubt.

The two market leaders in direct sleep phase alarm clocks

There are two manufacturers of sleep phase alarm clocks that have made a name for themselves in the market. In addition to these, there are also gadgets that can be used as sleep phase alarm clocks Apps other manufacturers, but I will only go into them later in the article. For the time being I would like to introduce you to the concepts and devices of aXbo and Sleep tracker demonstrate.

Single and pair devices from aXbo

The sensors of this sleep phase alarm clock were packaged directly for convenient use during sleep. You are namely in a terry cloth bracelet. The movement intensity of the sleeping person is transmitted by these bracelets. So if a stronger activity is transmitted - and this 15 to 30 minutes before the set wake-up time - then the sleeper is woken up.

aXbo sleep phase alarm clock set for couples

aXbo sleep phase alarm clock set for couples: the wristbands with vibration alarm are controlled separately by the alarm clock and can thus gently wake up two people who are sleeping next to each other - product: aXbo Couple on Amazon (Photo: Amazon).

Intelligent aXbo alarm clock: The most important features quickly explained

In addition to this sophisticated alarm function, the aXbo model also has other features. Quiet noises such as the sound of waves and similar relaxing things can help you fall asleep (chill-out sleep aid). An intelligent snooze function (called iSnooze) and a setting for power napping are also considered here. The alarm clock can be updated via firmware updates via internet connection and equipped with new functions - also a nice feature if the manufacturer such as aXbo actually delivers new functions.

aXbo Couple Version - intelligent alarm clock for couples

aXbo Couple Version - intelligent alarm clock for couples. So two people can be woken up at different times by the aXbo alarm clock (Photo: Amazon).

In addition to this coupling with the computer, which also makes it possible to evaluate sleep data, the couple version of the device is also noteworthy. This not only brings two bracelets with it, but also ensures that quiet noises are used during the wake-up process. These wake up the partner in the light sleep phase; but they do not disturb the other partner.

The smart aXbo alarm clocks have a battery life of approx. 8 to 10 days. Since you only have the wristbands on your wrist to sleep, it is not a problem to charge them during the day after a week.

Sources of supply for the aXbo devices

Alarm clock, sleep laboratory and more: the sleep tracker

As "Sleep laboratory on the wrist " the sleep tracker sleep phase alarm clock is named by the manufacturer. In addition to the recording function of sleep data, which is already in the name of the product, the wake-up function of this gadget in the look of a wristwatch is not to be despised. Here, too, the perfect moment to wake you up is searched for about half an hour before the set time. If that is not possible, the set time will be used.

Sleeptracker Onyx Black

The Sleeptracker (here Onxy Black) is for people who would like to have a watch with a smart alarm function. With a battery life of around one year, the "maintenance" is also very manageable (Photo: Amazon).

Further information on the Sleeptracker sleep phase alarm clock

Of course, the device can also be worn during the day and used as a wristwatch. This also ensures that you get used to the alarm clock on your wrist. It can also be linked to a PC or Mac to evaluate sleep data. If you don't want to disturb your partner, you can replace the acoustic signal with a vibration. This feature is also beneficial for deaf users. The watch is also waterproof to a depth of at least 10 meters. The sleep tracker is operated with a button cell that lasts approx. 12 months - one cannot speak of a "battery life" because the battery (CR 2032) has to be changed at some point.

Sources of supply for the Sleeptracker

Bracelets with apps as sleep phase alarm clock

With regard to other bracelet solutions, two products or product families can also be highlighted. First of all, this is the sleep phase alarm clock from LARK and once the fitness bracelets UP Jawbone.

LARK: Functions and iPhone integration explained in 1,5 minutes

The bracelet from LARK including a holder and charging station for the iPhone is also available at Amazon. Everything you need to know about the device and how it works has been summarized in this video:

The UP bracelets from Jawbone

For all of you who want to motivate yourself to a healthier lifestyle with an intelligent bracelet and app, I can offer the activity bracelets from Jawbone recommend. Next to the UP move there is also that UP2 and I baked the UP3. The various models differ in the abundance of individual functions. They have in common the free app coupling, the activity, sleep and food recording as well as the calorie counter.

Jawbone Up3 in silver

The Jawbone UP3 (like the UP2) has, in addition to many other functions, a smart alarm that wakes the bracelet wearer in an almost awake phase (Photo: Jawbone).

Sleep phase alarm clock for UP2 and UP3

The UP 2 also brings a so-called Idle alert (should stimulate movement and start when a long period of inactivity is registered) and Smart Alarm with himself. In addition to that, the UP 3 nor cardiac health monitoring and enhancements to sleep tracking and activity logging. The Smart Alarm, i.e. the function of a sleep phase alarm clock, is also implemented here by vibration.

Where to buy the two bracelets

Sleep phase alarm clock apps for iPhone or Apple Watch without additional devices: not recommended

Some of the presented sleep phase alarm clocks can be paired with the iPhone. The use of the app is particularly necessary with the LARK model. And the charging station is a great bonus. In addition to the integration of the smartphone in the aforementioned gadgets, the Apple devices themselves can also act as sleep phase alarm clocks.

Apple Watch - not very suitable as a sleep phase alarm clock in practice

The Apple Watch is not very suitable as a sleep phase alarm clock in practice, because the battery has to be charged at night and the watch cannot be worn on the wrist (Photo: Apple).

The "WakeApp " (here is the link to the App Store), for example, uses the iPhone's motion sensors to find the perfect moment to wake up. The disadvantage: the device has to be on the bed to register the movements. So if you would rather push the iPhone down or sleep on a very firm mattress, the app is not for you. The Apple Watch, on the other hand, would be a perfect gadget; But if you use it during the day, you have to charge it at night - and that is not (yet) possible on your wrist. Maybe at some point with the magnetic bed pad, which then charges the Apple Watch by induction and heals various diseases via the magnetic field. ;)

My conclusion on sleep phase alarm clocks in general

A great thing! If you want to get out of bed faster in the morning, you should think about such an acquisition. Personally, I have had good experiences with the Up2's "Smartalarm" (this is the name of the sleep phase alarm function in Jawbone). I am often awake by myself at the set time and "randomly" look at the clock 2 minutes before the alarm, but especially when you have to get up at unusual times, it is more pleasant to be woken up while you are awake. I can definitely confirm this experience and from my point of view that is not hocus-pocus. You should just make sure that you don't choose too short the period of time in which you want to be woken up. If you only allow 15 minutes as a selection for the sleep phase alarm clock, the probability is high that it will simply wake you up at the last possible time due to lack of opportunity - regardless of whether you are in a waking phase or not.

What also makes sense is the selection of smart alarm clocks for couples and the deaf. They should definitely choose a device that can wake up with a vibration alarm, otherwise the matter is relatively pointless. ;-)

When making a decision Sleep tracker or aXbo I would personally the aXbo solution because I don't like a watch on my wrist during the day and really only need a smart alarm function (and no time). The terry cloth bracelet and the chill-out music function for falling asleep also sound very cozy. ;-)


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  1. Sven says:

    The Apple Watch is 80% charged within an hour, which is sufficient for daytime use in most cases. If you hang the watch on the charging station after waking up and then get ready for the day, you have enough time to charge the watch.

    • sir appleot says:

      Hi Sven! Thanks for the information. I did not know that. But not fully charging the watch is also a reliable battery killer in the long run. I have high hopes for the Apple Watch Series 3, which will probably arrive at the end of the year. They might win me over as a customer when the running time gets a little better. ;-)

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