So, I have results in from the survey I was running into mobile usage, alarm clocks and sleeping habits. The survey was live for exactly 24 hours and received 186 responses. Here's a summary for you:

  • Demographically: respondents were 75:24:1 male:female:rather not say. Average age of a respondent was 34.96 years; 80.1% were from the UK, 6.45% from the UK, and 1% or less from a large number of other countries. 79% were in full-time employment and 28% had children living with them;
  • Clocks and mobiles: 98% of them use some sort of alarm clock, 76% use their mobile as this alarm clock, and 85% of them have their phone visible from their bed;
  • Why they get up: 90% said for work, 17% to look after the family, 10% to get up with their partner (they could choose more than one category). Men were slightly more likely to get up for work (92.8% vs 82.22% of women), women slightly more likely to get up for their family (20% vs 15.83% of men);
  • Cost of failure: only 5% of respondents said it didn’t matter if they overslept. 72% rated it a medium level of problem or worse;
  • Sleep habits: he average respondent thought they needed 7.78h sleep a night and that they were getting 6.69h sleep a night. 52% are catching up on missed sleep regularly. 8% described themselves as “dog tired”, 72% at a medium level of tiredness or worse;
  • When they use alarms: no respondent used an alarm clock at weekends only. 81% use one on week-days, 29% use one every day of the week. UK respondents were slightly less likely to use an alarm clock every day (27.5% vs 37.84% for respondents from outside the UK). The average time an alarm is set for is 07:04;
  • Making mistakes: men are slightly more likely to forget to set an alarm (55.4% vs 46% for women), whilst women are slightly more likely to set their alarm wrongly (48.89% vs 43% of men);
  • How well it works: 28.78% of men and 42.22% of women don’t tend to get up when they planned to; 71% of respondents got up a while after the alarm goes off, and 42% snooze their alarm more than once;
  • Device ownership and use: 53.7% of respondents owned iPhone and 32% owned Android devices. At night 67% have their phone charging, 94% have it switched on, and 75% have it connected to their Wi-Fi at home. Men are slightly more likely to have their phone charging at night (71.94% vs 55.56% for women). iPhone owners are slightly more likely to have their device connected to their home Wi-Fi (88% vs 75% for Android owners);
  • Night-time rituals: 55% of respondents set their alarm around bedtime (immediately before, during or as they go to sleep). A surprising (to me) 40% use an automated repeating alarm feature;
  • Impact of children: people in households with children are slightly more likely to not get up when planned (33.33% vs 28.3%), get up a while after the alarm goes off (73.5% vs 64.15%) and snooze more than once (42% vs 39.6%) - but it’s not a significant difference.

Interesting stuff (for me, anyway!) and thanks to everyone who helped out - some of you will be hearing from me again. And my conclusions from this are:

  • As expected, the mobile phone and alarm clock are natural bedfellows;
  • Most people get up for work, with a sizeable minority getting up for the family;
  • Given that the alarm clock is the sole tool most people use to manage their sleep, it's surprisingly ineffective: most people are tired and have catch-up routines to manage this. Most people don't get up when they wanted to (as evidenced by multiple-snoozing behaviour and a direct question on this point);
  • Slightly iffy because the differences are quite slight, but in general men need help remembering to set the alarm at all, women need help setting it correctly;
  • It's reasonable to presume that the alarm clock is visible from the bedside, charging, turned on, and connected to Wi-fi;
  • Alarm-setting is either a bed-time ritual, or (for a surprising number of people) handled automatically by the clock itself using a repeating function;
  • There aren’t significant differences in the alarm clock-related habits of people living in households with children.

So, this - and a Google Adwords campaign I'm running to measure product interest from real people - is leading me towards a product which (a) is a great alarm clock and (b) helps its owner manage their sleep better, as well as getting up in the morning.