Morning Sun from Pico Brothers is a nifty addition to the popular alarm clock category in the iOS App Store. The free app (with some in-app purchases that are free for a limited time) mimics the colors of sunlight to wake you up. Morning Sun controls your iOS display brightness, turning the display dark when you go to bed and gradually brightening it in the morning to mimic the rising sun. The brightening starts about 30 minutes before you wake up. The app has alarm sounds, like the singing of birds, to help you gently awake.
To get started with Morning Sun, you set your alarm time and then leave your iPhone or iPad on a charger with the screen facing where you are sleeping. When the alarm goes off, a tap on the screen gives you an additional 5 minutes of snooze time, while a double tap stops the alarm. The app works well as an alarm, especially if your bedroom is dark. It also has some fresh thinking for an alarm clock app, and is attractive graphically.
Morning Sun has three in-app purchases, which are free for a few days as long as you are willing to message someone about the app. One in-app purchase gives you additional alarm sounds, and another provides a sunset simulator, which slowly fades the screen at night. There is also a package of sleep sounds to help you nod off, including ocean, winds, stream, an old fireplace, Thunder, a fan, white noise and more.
Morning Sun is a universal app and available for free from the iOS App Store. It requires iOS 5 or later and is optimized for the iPhone 5.