Design an alarm clock for elderly people
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in Product Design by (36 points) | 278 views

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Clarifying quetions:

1) Is this for waking up or as an reminder 

2) At home or in oldage home? 

3) Physical or digital product?  

4) Any business goal ??


User identification:  

1) 70+

2) Couple or living alone 

3) Shaky hands,  forgetfulness, weak on hearing 


Use cases to consider: 

1) Setting up an alarm - Priority High 

2) Snooze . - High 

3) Stop - High 

4) Lost and Search  - Low 

5) Battery change  - Low 

6)  Fall and may break 


Pain points

1) Setting up is difficult. May forget to setup 

2) Might not even hear. 

3) Disturb other family members

4) Snoozing button is difficult to find. 



1)  Voice based setting up. Natural language. 

2)  Alarm would ask before sleeping whether you wanted to be woken up?

3) No sound. Instead of gentle nudge to wakeup. 

4) Gesture or  voice based snooze - No need to open your eyes and find button


Final product 

A wearable who would wake the person up by nudging. If technologically possible, then gradually make person ready to wake up instead of giving a sleep shock.  Setting up just by voice commands. Snooze by just raising hands or voice.

Metrics to capture. 

1) no of alarms set and person really woke up 

2) Time required to setup. 

3) No of times person forgot but our product reminded to set up 

Comments highly encouraged. 


by (66 points)
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Problem Statement: Design an alarm clock for the elderly people?

Question to interviewer: Why? Is there any short coming for the existing alarm clocks?

Interviewer: You figure out

Question to interviewer: Does it have to be an actual clock?

Interviewer: Yes

Question to interviewer: What age group is considered elderly?

Interviewer: 55+

Question to interviewer: Does the elderly use alarm clock for any purpose other than a wake up reminder?

Interviewer: IDK

Assumption: I am under the assumption that elderly use an alarm clock just as a reminder and nothing else

Problem Statement: Design a mechanism for people aged 55+ to help them wake up

User segments:

Age group: 55-70

Relatively tech-savvy, trying to maintain an active lifestyle, health conscious, hearing ability starts to diminish   

Age group: 70-80

Not tech-savvy, hearing ability low, physical control - low

Age group:80+

Not tech-savvy, hearing ability poor, physical control - low

Selection: User segment 1 – Age group 55-70 because TAM is higher and other segments are difficult to market the product to.

User segment pain points:

  1. Trouble falling asleep and dislikes loud sounds
  2. Forgets about setting alarms
  3. Not app-driven, need an easy to use technology
  4. Is usually with a partner or alone – seeks company
  5. Misplaces alarm clock and need to search for it

Product vision: A personalized alarm companion

Product features:

Sleep planner: Elderly loves routines, a voice commanded setup with zero touches, and can be set for every day through one command. Customizable for weekdays and weekends according to schedule. Based on the alarm time set, sleep planner feature sets voice-based reminder for the right time to sleep (Based on age, sleeping patterns etc.)


Greetings from dear: Kids and grandkids can record their voices “Good Morning Grandpa” etc. that can be used as an alarm tone instead of the traditional tones.


Right wakeup time: Alarm clock designed to monitor the REM sleep cycle and wake up when only when in the light REM cycle closer to the set alarm. Sleep tracking based on breathing patterns (non-intrusive, equipment less sleep monitoring.

Bright color and with voice recognition: Easily noticeable color in the room with a docking station, responds to a question with a beep. For ex: “Alarm where are you” – beeps, snoozes based on voice command. 



  1.  <!--[endif]-->Sleep Planner: Impact: High, Effort: Medium
  2. Greetings from Dear: Impact: High, Effort: High
  3. Right wake up time: Impact: Medium, Effort: High
  4. Color and Voice Recognition: Impact: Low, Effort: Low


  1. Sleep Planner: Alarms set in a week, frequency of interaction
  2. Greeting from kids: No. of messages recorded per user
  3. Right wake-up time: Avg No. of snoozes   

Trade-offs: Compliance with data capture, the success of certain features depend on user data.


I am looking for partners for mock practice. Please reach out to: if you would like to do a few mocks. 

by (13 points)
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