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If You Hate Mornings, You’ll Really Hate Microsoft’s New Android Alarm Clock App

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Microsoft Garage today launched what must be the most annoying alarm clock for Android yet — especially if you hate mornings as much as I do.

The Mimicker Alarm app only lets you dismiss the alarm by — you guessed it — mimicking certain facial expressions, taking a picture of an object that matches whatever color the app decides on for the day, or by repeating a tongue twister (“All I want is a proper cup of coffee, made in a proper copper coffee pot”).


If you hit the snooze button, you’ll get a five-minute respite.

If you don’t complete the game within 30 seconds, the app will assume that you’ve fallen asleep again and the alarm will start ringing again.

Microsoft built the app as an example of what developers can create with its Project Oxford machine learning services. Those are surprisingly good and the company loves to show them off with odd little experiments. The first one — How-Old.net — was the surprise hit of Microsoft’s last Build conference, for example.

With Mimicker, we are showcasing several different Project Oxford APIs,” Allison Light, a program manager on a team that develops apps for Project Oxford, said in today’s launch announcement. “We wanted to build a simple app that used Project Oxford to make it unique and interesting. Since we’re open sourcing all of the code, we thought an alarm app would be easy for other developers to read the code and see how we used the APIs.”

Microsoft says “an internal beta test of the app delivered positive feedback to the team.” That’s clearly a team of morning persons right there.

To be fair, you can always turn off the games and use the app as a normal alarm clock, too, but what’s the fun in that?