16 December 2013 ~ 1 Comment

Oregon Scientific WL388 Illumi Shine Wake-Up Clock with Natural Sunrise Simulation and Smartphone Connectivity for Remote Control and Sleep Tracking Ap by Oregon Scientific

The Oregon Scientific WL388 “Illumi Shine” is an interesting puzzle to figure out:

Does it wake you with light? Yip
Can it wake you with sound? Yip

Is any of this easy to set up?

According to most, no. And at first glance, I had to agree. Even just setting the time was difficult.

But then I downloaded the much maligned application for my Android phone….and everything became easy!

At first I was a bit peeved: After spending time getting the clock configured manually, I had to use the reset button to get the Bluetooth code. And then, after undoing my work and putting in the code I got “cannot connect”. My first thought was “wow, those people were right!”

But then I hit “retry” and everything connected…the phone and clock synced the time and I now had a nice graphical interface to program the clock. Very nice!

Ok, now for what I see as the real issues with this product:

1.) The time display is blurry. I can normally read a digital clock even without my glasses, this one, not at all.
2.) The snooze button is teeny, tiny, and in the midst of a bunch of other buttons. The clock says “snooze” on top of the clear plastic….I expected it to be touch sensitive, now I think they were pointing out that the button is on the back.
3.) The sound loops are more annoying that restful. Why is there no simple “white noise” setting?
4.) The app never connects the first time. I tried it 10 times just to see: All 10 times required me to hit the “retry” button. Not a deal breaker, but definitely frustrating.
5.) The sleep timer is not a smooth decrease. The sound volume jumps down dramatically instead of gradually decreasing over time. I find this sudden change jarring. Especially when the light is still on and the sound completely stops.
6.) The sleep timer settings are long, longer, and really long. Let me set a specific time instead of locking me into 30, 60, 90, or 120 minutes,
7.) Which the phone interface is ok, the manual controls need to be much bigger and easier to get to. I do not want to bring my phone to bed with me every night. This is one reason why I have an alarm clock.

If I have to have my phone to use the clock, then use the app to do a lot more. How about let me set up soundscapes? Let me set specific times or manually input the number of minutes.

Overall: 2 Stars. I see a lot of potential in a product like this. Unfortunately, this one left all that potential sitting on the table.

Description:
Rise and shine naturally with the illumi Shine wake up light. This innovative lamp simulates the gradual lighting changes of sunrise and sunset with a warm white LED, realigning your body’s natural rhythms for better sleep. The illumi Shine gently wakes you with slowly growing light and natural sounds at your chosen time, or at an optimal rising time calculated based on your sleeping patterns by the illumiShine app. Simply tap the sleek display for a few extra minutes of sleep or to dim the display in the evening. You can even control the illumi Shine’s settings and access the app from your Bluetooth-enabled smartphone, for full control of your morning waking from the comfort of your bed. Features include: warm white light which simulates sunrise and sunset, five soothing natural sounds, wirelessly connects to Bluetooth 4.0 (BLE) enabled smartphones and devices with corresponding apps (compatible with iPhone® 4S/5, iPad® 3, iPad® mini, iPod touch® 5), supports iOS 5.0 and above, illuniShine app for sleep tracking, smart alarm to wake you at the optimum time when in a light sleep state, 6 alarm sound options (including beep), brightness adjustment of up to 20 levels, light Output: up to 150 lux, smart snooze activates with an easy tap, LED display with automatic dimmer, and a sleep timer.

Rating: ★★☆☆☆

One Response to “Oregon Scientific WL388 Illumi Shine Wake-Up Clock with Natural Sunrise Simulation and Smartphone Connectivity for Remote Control and Sleep Tracking Ap by Oregon Scientific”

  1. Steve Tedder 22 April 2017 at 8:14 am Permalink

    The worst thing about this clock, which you don’t mention, is that five minutes after the alarm time, it cuts off abruptly. If you’re not fully up and drinking coffee by then, you might go right back to sleep. I recommend using it for the light, in conjunction with another alarm clock.


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