iPhone gremlin causes clock alarms to fail today

Jan 2, 2011

Feel like visiting the iPhone Twilight Zone? Try setting an alarm on your phone’s clock today — it won’t work. Draw your own science fiction conclusions as to why, because Apple (AAPL) won’t help you.

A glitch in the iPhone’s clock app, which comes standard on every new iPhone, for some reason prevents it from recognizing one-time alarms for Jan. 1 and 2, 2011. Apple hasn’t revealed what the problem is exactly, but says the issue will be fixed by tomorrow, Jan. 3, according to a report by the BBC via UPI.com.

The alarm function isn’t dead altogether this weekend: while one-time alarms won’t work, you can still set a recurring alarm in the app that’ll go off right when it says it will. The glitch seems to be a problem in iOS 4.2, because the non-working alarm clock is showing up on older iPhone models that have been updated.

And according to Apple, the issue won’t exist tomorrow. The company claims that whatever is going on with the clock app will only occur on Jan. 1 and 2 (fixing itself, apparently! Yes, I’m still on a Twilight Zone kick), so theoretically, any alarms you need to get you up for work on Monday should be fully functional.

A word of advice, however: set the recurring alarm to get you up if you use your iPhone as an alarm clock. Having tested both, the recurring alarm definitely worked today, and I doubt the “my iPhone didn’t wake me up” excuse will fly with any bosses, just in case Apple is wrong about the glitch fixing itself.

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Phil Hornshaw

Phil Hornshaw is a freelance writer, editor and author living in Los Angeles, dividing his time between playing video games, playing video games on his cell phone, and writing about playing video games. He’s also the co-author of So You Created a Wormhole: The Time Traveler’s Guide to Time Travel, which attempts to mix time travel pop culture with some semblance of science, as well as tips on the appropriate means of riding dinosaurs. Check out his profile.

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