SpinClock

This clock features a single vertical hand past which the hours, minutes, and seconds rotate with liquid-smooth precision. The metal dials are rendered so convincingly that you'll be able to feel their weight.

A beguiling and novel way of telling time, SpinClock provides an entrancing and totally analog view of the current time of day. 

Watch this mesmerizing digital sculpture "spin up" smoothly to the current time, dial by dial, every time you start it. 

If you only want to know what time it is, your iPhone already tells you. But if you want to enjoy knowing, get SpinClock.

Buy SpinClock in the App Store!


Customization

The settings for SpinClock are located in the Settings application, available from your device's home screen. Start Settings and then scroll to the bottom where application preferences are found.

How to read the SpinClock

The dials rotate counter-clockwise, past the single indicator hand. Like a mechanical clock, the movement is analog, so that all the dials are moving all the time, each at their own rate. When the time approaches the top of the hour, the minutes on the dial are referring to the previous hour, not the upcoming hour. Thus, on the left-hand picture above, the time is about 9:40.

Up 30, Down 30 vs. the Standard 60

One of the preferences is for the style of minute dial. The default is to show the minute dial counting up from 0 to 59. However, near the top of the hour, this can be confusing, because at a quick glance it's not clear to a new user, for example, whether it's 8:55 or 9:55. (It's the same problem that kids have when learning how to first tell time on a regular clock.) To help with this, you can choose an "Up 30, Down 30" minute dial where the minutes past the hour count up to 30, and then back down to zero after the half hour using visually distinct numerals. In the Eternos theme, minutes till the hour are shown in shallow wells; in the Chronoscope theme, they are shown in orange. The screenshots below show the time as about 4 minutes till 9 and about 3 after 9, respectively.

Use as a bedside clock or "dock clock"

In the Settings for SpinClock, you can choose how long it should wait before shutting off and auto-locking due to inactivity. When using it on your night stand, you may want to use "1 hour" or "Never". You should also be sure that your device is plugged in before choosing this.

This auto-lock time is only active while SpinClock is active; once you return to your home screen or run another app, the device's existing auto-lock preference is in effect.

History

About a year ago my youngest daughter came to me with an idea for a clock, where the face spun and not the hands. I thought it was a cool idea and showed her what it might look like in real life, writing a quick Mac OS X program to prototype it. In her original idea, the clock had a single large hour dial, and that's how I wrote it up. I gave a copy to my wife so she could see our daughter's idea too; a few months later she told me that she found it to be an enjoyable desktop utility and was using it daily. By that time I had an iPhone, and I thought it would make a great iPhone app. It took me awhile to come up with the right look for it, something that would use the iPhone's high-resolution screen to best advantage. I also added dials for the minutes and seconds, and spent some time ensuring that the animation would be perfectly smooth. The result is SpinClock as you see it.