When your alarm goes off in the morning, it can be a bit of a struggle to summon the willpower not to just hit snooze and drift off back in to dreamland, so the inventors of a new app called Wakie have decided to make it a more social experience.
In fairness, pretty much everything these days is "social", in the sense that we do it alone and in the dark from the safety of a touchscreen device in the palm of our hand, but even with that in mind this latest app seems a little bit strange to us.
That might explain why it took so long for the app to get approved (nine months, according to Tech Crunch) the app is now live on iOS, having originally started as a website in Russia, but has now gone global with smartphone apps for Windows and Android also.
Co-founder and CEO Hrachik Adjamian explained that the idea behind it is to replace your conventional alarm clock with "the voice of friendly strangers from all over the world who try to make you smile in the morning. A lot of people who use our service say that they started to love mornings. The better you start your day the better you feel yourself for the rest of the day."
You set a time for your alarm to go off, but instead of getting an annoying noise or some strange melody, you instead get connected to a call from an anonymous user who speaks to you and wakes you up. You are either a 'Wakie' (the person doing the waking up) or a 'Sleepyhead' (the person who wants to get woken up) and it is apparently more effective than the conventional form of alarm.
"Our research shows that a 1 minute talk to a stranger wakes your brain up with a 99 per cent guarantee. When someone asks you questions in the morning your brain has to wake up to answer. Also you try to be kind, you try to turn on your social pattern of behaviour. After the call you can’t sleep anymore even if you had a short sleep."
Obviously, being able to wake up in a more pleasant manner would be nice, but we're not so sure that we'd like to chat to someone we've never met first thing in the morning. Would you sign up to be voluntarily awoken by a stranger?