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Posted at 11:00 AM ET, 01/ 4/2011

iPhone alarm problems subsiding

By Hayley Tsukayama

Update: The alarm problem seems to be over, according to discussion in the service forums at Apple's Web site. Most of the users on the forums who deleted and reset their alarms on Monday had no problems today. While some users are still reporting problems on Twitter, it's unclear whether those are simply user error. The forums are also full of stories about missed flights and late medication as a result of the glitch, providing a glimpse into how much we rely on our cellphones.

Call it Y2K-11. When a bug kept iPhone and iPod touch alarms from sounding on Jan. 1 and Jan. 2, Apple suggested that those having trouble should set recurring alarms, and that the alarms would fix themselves by Jan. 3, the first work day of 2011.

But users are still reporting problems with the alarms Monday morning. The term "iphone alarm problem" was trending high on Google as those who overslept stumbled to their computers to figure out what was wrong.

This is not the first round of iPhone alarm problems. In November's switch to daylight saving time, iPhone and iPod touch alarms in Europe went off an hour later. And in September, a system bug roused users in Australia and New Zealand from sleep an hour earlier.

Some of those affected by the bug say that they've fixed their problems by resetting their alarms or even just restarting their phones, but these solutions don't seem to have worked for everyone. Just in case, Mashable put up a list of five free alarm apps that work.

Sound off: Have you been affected by the alarm clock bug?

By Hayley Tsukayama  | January 4, 2011; 11:00 AM ET
Categories:  Apple, Gadgets  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: The mystery of the missing Hotmail messages (updated)
Next: Apple developers cautiously eye Mac App Store


I had plans. Brilliant plans to get back on my early-morning gym schedule. Now I have plans to blame Apple when my pants don't fit.

Posted by: charlottee | January 3, 2011 9:22 AM | Report abuse

Apple has messed up big! They issued a release that said it would work properly on January 3rd and yet it did not! People rely on these tools to work!

Posted by: Thelmerfud | January 3, 2011 9:23 AM | Report abuse

It most certainly was not fixed for january 3rd. I had 3 alarms set to go off and none of them went off. I think that apple really missed the ball on this one. Unfortunately... a missed alarm is much more detrimental to a customer than is sporatic signal loss, yet there was much more focus on the antenna. Come on apple.

Posted by: Cmare | January 3, 2011 9:24 AM | Report abuse

My alarm worked just fine this morning however, I did set the recurring alarm to be sure. I just tested the alarm in standard mode and "Yay!", it is working as before. I use my iPhone for far more than any other phone I've owned and while I was disappointed that my alarm didn't go off over the weekend, I do feel that everyone (even Apple) is entitled to a glitch now and again. I have not had other problems with my iPhone other than this alarm faux pas.

Posted by: thoreau222 | January 3, 2011 9:34 AM | Report abuse

Still a problem on my iPhones this Monday morning.

Posted by: geoffnich | January 3, 2011 10:19 AM | Report abuse

Still having the problem. Recurring worked though. You would think the alarm is the least problematic function on a iPhone...

Posted by: stoofstraat | January 3, 2011 10:21 AM | Report abuse

My iPhone alarm did not work this morning in Phoenix. Still got to Mesa only 10 minutes late to start endoscopies...but....!??

Posted by: DrDanPara | January 3, 2011 11:31 AM | Report abuse

I have an iPhone 4 w/ iOS 4.2.1. My alarm worked on 12/31; did not work on 1/1; did not use on 1/2; and worked properly today (1/3).

Posted by: cvieg | January 3, 2011 12:47 PM | Report abuse

I set 4 alarms for myself on new years day at 4:45am, 5 am, 5:05 am amd 5:10 am (I was paranoid about missing an 8:11 am flight) and NONE of them went off. Luckily, I was so paranoid about missing the flight that I wasn't really sleeping anyway. I woke up on my own at 5:08. That was a CLOSE call.

Posted by: spkdc | January 3, 2011 1:46 PM | Report abuse

my family and I had a 6am flight out of ATL to return home from holiday over the weekend and I set my alarm to 4am, my wife set hers for 4:15. Alarms never went off, we woke up at 5am, rusned to airport, returned car and BEGGED Delta to check our baggage (though we had missed the cut off by two minutes). WE BARELY made our flight home (but we did).

Then saw that Apple was to blame.
alarm didn't work 1 Jan, didn't work 2 Jan, and i thought it wouldn't work today (I'm no longer relying on my iphone as an alarm thank you) but just checked it when reading this article and it appears to be working.

not good when you start doubting technology that you come to rely on. shame

Posted by: washpostereader | January 3, 2011 2:09 PM | Report abuse

try having a 1 and 3 year old. No need for an alarm clock. You'll be up no later than 7 -- every day -- for many years.

Posted by: jsefcik | January 3, 2011 5:06 PM | Report abuse

Yesterday morning I noticed that my iPod Touch alarms didn't go off. I was fortunate that I also had set my clock radio alarm and my phone alarm, a ritual that I've been doing ever since I bought my Touch last spring. I had the problem before, but I can't remember when. I restored it and backed it up, but the problem still wasn't solved. I didn't have time to do it again because I had to leave for work, but planned on doing it again after work last night. I don't have my Touch connected to an Internet because I'm not sure how to set it up, so when I heard on the news about the problems iPhone users were having w/ alarms, I wondered if my alarm problem from yesterday morning was from the same problem the iPhones were having. I was just about to restore my Touch again when they started talking about it on the evening news. I also wondered how my Touch could be affected considering it's not connected to an Internet.
I didn't restore it because I wondered if it would straighten itself out on it's own, like they said on the news. I was surprised, as well as relieved, when I heard one of my alarms go off. Five minutes later, another one went off for something else. It seems to be okay now and I'm relieved that I didn't have to make a trip to the Apple Store after work yesterday to see if one of their staff members could help me. I was worried that I would have to replace my Touch. I have too much information, photos, and such, stored on my Touch, and was worried that if I had to replace it, I wouldn't be able to transfer my saved information to the new one. I'm releived that I don't need to.

Posted by: breezy56 | January 3, 2011 9:04 PM | Report abuse

My iPhone 3GS running iOS 4.1 worked fine as alarms go. Was it just an iPhone 4 issue only?

Posted by: Batman56 | January 5, 2011 6:28 PM | Report abuse

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