Have you every wondered how to change your iPhone’s snooze time from the default nine minutes — that’s right, it’s always nine minutes from the time you press snooze until the alarm starts going again — but can’t work out how to do it? There’s a very good reason why you can’t. It’s not possible.
Though you may really want to learn how to change your iPhone’s snooze time, Apple has always stuck to the traditional nine-minute snooze time with all iOS iterations. We understand this strict snooze time isn’t helpful for those who require more than nine minutes to wake up in the morning, so we came up with three cunning workarounds that let you buy yourself more time when your dreaded alarm goes off.
You may not be able to change your iPhone’s snooze time yet, but we can still help you cheat the morning iPhone alarm system a bit.
But wait: Why is the iPhone’s snooze time nine minutes?
We’ve previously looked into why Apple’s default snooze time around the world is nine minutes. TL;DR: The main theory behind why the snooze period was set to nine minutes is a technical one. The iPhone snooze function had to be worked in around the existing gearing of a small alarm clock, and keeping the time period as high as it could go while remaining in single digits is said to have presented a more logical technical solution.
The secondary reason, which may be due more to user experience, is that nine minutes is a satisfactory time for a brief rest. If you get past the 10-minute mark, your body may start to fall into a deep sleep, making waking up again more unpleasant.
In a completely programmable digital era, the fact that snooze is set to a default (and in the case of the iPhone, an unchangeable default) nine minutes is what is described as a “nostalgic artificial standard.”
In other words, it’s either an homage to how things have traditionally been done, or an if-it-ain’t-broke-then-don’t-try-to-fix-it type scenario.
Snoozing can seriously delay the start of one’s day, and Mashable’s Rachel Thompson even found that hitting the snooze button can be quite the relationship killer. It’s worth trying to quit the snooze button altogether by ensuring you get quality sleep, but if you’re still curious how to change your iPhone’s snooze time to longer than nine minutes, read on for our three workaround solutions.
1. Set multiple iPhone alarms
Though you can’t change your iPhone’s snooze time, you can create your own gap between wakeup sounds by setting multiple iPhone alarms in the morning. This is probably the simplest way to give yourself a longer snooze time.
In our scenario, we need to get up at 7 a.m. but want a warning alarm to sound at 6:45 a.m. to give us a chance to come round before we have to actually physically get up.
Set your first iPhone alarm to 6:45 a.m., making sure snooze is toggled off.
Credit: screengrab: apple
Set a second iPhone alarm to 7 a.m. Again, ensure snooze is not activated — unless you’re worried you won’t fully wake up after this second alarm. If that’s the case, consider setting a third alarm or engaging snooze on the second alarm. That way you’ll have a 15-minute snooze the first time around, and then Apple’s classic nine-minute snooze time will return.
Credit: Screengrab: apple
Your alarm at 6:45 a.m. will give you a warning that it’s nearly time to get up, and thew one at 7 a.m. will let you know it’s officially time to shake that booty out of bed.
2. Use a long song as your alarm tone
This iPhone snooze time hack won’t work for everyone, and it certainly isn’t suited to people who can easily fall back into a deep sleep after their alarm goes off, but if you’re the type that just dozes when your initial alarm sounds, you could change your alarm tone to a long song. This way, when the music stops, you’ll know it’s time to get up. This option lets you change your iPhone’s snooze time to something longer than nine minutes and gives you a break from Apple’s generic alarm tones. Ideal!
Here are 10 songs from a variety of genres — all longer than nine minutes — that you can consider setting as your iPhone alarm tone.
- The Stone Roses, “Fool’s Gold” (9:53)
Lynyrd Skynyrd, “Free Bird” (10:07)
The Doors, “The End” (11:43)
Orbital, “Chime” (12:46)
Flowered Up, “Weekender” (12:53)
Pink Floyd, “Shine On You Crazy Diamond” (13:22)
Gillian Welch, “I Dream a Highway” (14:14)
Jimi Hendrix, “Voodoo Chile” (15:00)
The Velvet Underground, “Sister Ray” (17:28)
Once you’ve purchased your chosen song and downloaded it to your iPhone in the usual way, you simply need to set your alarm to play that song. To do this, go into your Clock app and tap edit, then tap on the alarm you want to change from a tone to music.
Halfway down the screen, you’ll see the option to change the alarm’s “Sound.” Tap this. In the next screen, tap the “Pick a song” option.
Credit: Screengrab: apple
Your iPhone will now bring up all your music options. Simply tap through to find and select the song you want to wake to. Ensure you have snooze toggled to off for this option.
3. Use a free iPhone alarm clock app that is customizable
Your final option is to simply bypass your iPhone’s clock app and download a free, third-party alarm clock app, of which there are loads to choose from. (If all else fails you can also go old school and buy a physical alarm clock. What a concept!)
We’ve opted to go for the free, ad-supported, succinctly named Alarm Clock app. Its user interface is very similar to your iPhone’s Clock app, but unlike the iPhone this app gives you the option to change your snooze time.
Once you’ve downloaded the app and are in the process of setting your alarm, look for the “Advanced” option toward the bottom of your screen. Tap this. In the next screen, tap on “Snooze Interval.”
Credit: screengrab: Alarm clock
Tap this, then change your iPhone’s snooze time to your liking.
Like we noted earlier, it might be worth testing out some popular sleep apps to help you get a night’s rest so good that you won’t even want to smash the snooze button in the morning. But if you know in your heart that you’re a snoozer for life, we support you and sincerely hope this list helps you make the most of your time in bed. Sweet dreams!
This story was originally published in April 2021 and updated in August 2021.