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App of the Week: Timely for Android

Today I used the most beautiful Android app ever. It’s called Timely, and it elevates the simple alarm clock app to an art form. Through the use of Android design elements and clear directions superimposed on the screen, it’s easy to use Timely even though it operates quite differently to other alarm clock apps I’ve used before.

There are three sections to the application, from left to right: an alarm setting section, a clock section, and a timer section.

Setting an alarm is done in quite a novel way, by dragging it in from the left of the screen. Once inserted, you can adjust the alarm by five minute increments by tapping above and below it. You can tap on each alarm to access and change various details, including the tone used, whether the alarm should repeat, and whether or not to use ‘Smart Rise’ in order to potentially awaken slightly more refreshed.

The clock section is simple, just showing the current time. The typography here is great, as is the transition between times – as each second ticks by, the numbers shift and flow into one another in a rather hypnotic manner. If you tap on the screen, you get a subtle rippling effect. It’s nice enough that I considered picking up a stand for my phone so that I could gaze at it whilst falling asleep.

The final section is the timer. This can be ‘wound up’ by running your finger in a circle around the screen, with 60 minutes added with each full rotation. There’s also a button in the lower left which adds 15 seconds to the current timer. The current timer setting is shown in the middle of the circle, which can be tapped to begin playing. There’s also a button at the bottom which turns the section into a stopwatch rather than a timer, with a simple start/stop operation.

Each section is really nicely done, with its own colour and animations. Bubbles flow in the background too, making for a very tranquil experience. The design works well on tablets too, filling the screen with the current page on the left and a clock to the right.

Through the enlightened application of Android design guidelines and well tuned animations, Timely provides a new standard for excellence in Android app design. While there are many apps that are as capable, none seem to me as beautiful.

Timely is free from the Google Play Store. In-app purchases allow for additional features and the removal of ads, either piece-by-piece or in a single package for £2.49. You can also share word of the app with your friends to unlock premium features for free.

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