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Apps help you deal with daylight saving time -- and waking up

Sleep Cycle Alarm Clock is 99 cents in

Sleep Cycle Alarm Clock is 99 cents in the App Store and Google Play. Photo Credit: Google Play

Your alarm clock is lying to you. It's forcing you to get up an hour earlier, and that's why you will begin this week feeling tired and grumpy. These apps won't turn back the clock on daylight saving time, but they may help you sleep better by getting your body clock to adjust quicker.

Sleep Cycle Alarm Clock

(iPhone, Android; $0.99)

Anyone who already finds it hard to wake up in the morning knows the suffering that daylight saving time brings. No matter what your clock shows, your body knows you're getting up an hour earlier than you did last week. As the time to wake up approaches, this "smart" alarm clock tries to sense when you are in your lightest sleep phase within a 30-minute window before it sounds, making the waking-up process a little less agonizing.

Jawbone UP

(iOS, Android; free)

When you don't sleep well, there's a cascade of aftereffects that negatively impact your overall health. With this app you manually log the amount of sleep you get, the food you eat and how well you feel emotionally. The app tracks your activity level by counting the number of steps a day you take and offers advice and coaching. Jawbone makes a line of wristband activity trackers, but you don't need a band to use this app.

Yoga for Insomnia

(iOS, Android; $4.99)

Daylight saving time typically makes it harder to get to sleep, because you are, of course, going to bed an hour earlier. Instead of tossing and turning, perhaps twisting and stretching will be the sleep tonic. Yoga for Insomnia offers a series of poses and stress-reduction techniques aimed at helping you get to sleep faster and have a better night's rest.

White Noise

(iOS, Android; $1.99)

This popular app has been around since 2008, and developer TMSOFT keeps adding features and functionality. White Noise offers 40 soothing or immersive sounds that hide annoying noises that make it hard to sleep. A new feature allows you to record and loop custom sounds that you find sleep inducing, whether it's a babbling brook or, perhaps, a babbling spouse.


Tech bytes


30-plus? Plus $10, please

Tinder launched a paid version of its popular dating app, but how much you pay depends on how old you are. Tinder Plus, which gives users more options than the free version, is $9.99 a month -- but only for those 18-29. People 30 and older pay $19.99 a month. Tinder didn't explain the pricing structure, but the app is primarily marketed for, and is most popular with, people in their 20s.


Watch list

As Apple prepares to unveil its Apple Watch, the company is promoting the device's value as a fitness tool. But a new study indicates you probably already own a fitness device. University of Pennsylvania researchers concluded that smartphone fitness apps "are just as accurate as wearable devices" for tracking physical activity and are likely "a more widely accessible and affordable way" of monitoring health and fitness. -- PETER KING

Street smarts

The Amazon rain forest is the latest natural wonder to get the Google "Street View" treatment. Images produced using a camera attached to a zip line, a hiker's back and a boat on the Amazon give viewers a sense of what it's like to encounter the trailhead for the rain forest and to live nearby. The panoramic pictures also show the expanse of waterways and the density of flora.

-- Los Angeles Times

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