Article in App of the Week category.
Dark Noise is a Modern Take on a White Noise Machine
Recently, in an attempt to get some more zzz’s, we’ve been testing various apps that produce white noise. Most apps offer a basic list of…
Recently, in an attempt to get some more zzz’s, we’ve been testing various apps that produce white noise. Most apps offer a basic list of common sounds that aim to help you relax and drift to sleep. Not all that impressive. Dark Noise on the other hand, looks lovely and has some great features that make it worthwhile for anyone looking to relax, sleep better, or that has a newborn.
White noise apps are usually so simple, there isn’t much room for slick design. But Dark Noise is different. It expands the number of features, offers a massive list of high-quality sounds, as well as offering a more refined experience.
The app has adopted — as the name suggests — a dark appearance with blacks, dark grey, and purple hues. This isn’t to just jump on the current trend of “dark mode,” but instead is driven by the utility. Users are most likely to open the app as they ready themselves for bed, in dimly lit rooms. A dark interface just makes sense, as well as being on-trend. Dark Noise also offers six other themes — including a “true” black theme — and more than 20 other icons for more a more customized look.
In the app, it presents you with what’s most important. Your chosen white noise, a play or pause button, and volume. There is quick access to the list of other sounds, a sleep timer that will eventually fade out the noise, and an AirPlay icon. You can head to bed, run a shortcut that will take your preferred sound and set a sleep timer. With AirPlay, you can also cast the sound to a better speaker, such as a HomePod or Sonos.
Dark Noise offers up more than 40 distinct sounds to help you relax or fall asleep. They’ve broken those down by category to make perusing them a bit easier and less tedious. There are your expected noises such as generic white noise and various types of running water. But Dark Noise also has more exotic options. There’s a hair dryer, a washing machine, wind chimes, a cat purring, fireworks, a train, a coffee shop, keyboard typing, and more.
If you’ve a newborn, white noise can often help them get to sleep as well. A lullaby track is perfect for the little kiddo — or you, we won’t judge. With a speaker in the child’s room, you can AirPlay directly to it and start and stop as you need.
Going through this near-endless track list, you can favorite any of the sounds for quick access in the future. Our favorite feature though, is the ability to create your own custom sounds. Once you tap the + button, Dark Noise lets you add any noises from the list. As an example, we created a “camping in the rain” noise. It has the Rain on Tent track, Drippy Rain, and Windy Trees. Each of those sounds has individual volume controls so yo can adjust the EQ to your taste. Finally, add your own icon or a pic from your camera roll.
Another touted feature of Dark Noise is its widget. This makes it even easier. Just add the widget to the Today View and you can launch and start with any of your chosen sounds. With iOS 14, it gets even better. The developer has already shared examples of the new Home Screen Dark Noise widget that is even easier to use.
Before Dark Noise, we never would’ve thought we’d be here espousing the uniqueness of a white noise app, yet here we are. The app is a joy to use, looks incredible, and has a blend of features that are very thoughtful to its very specific use. Developer Charlie Chapman has done an exceptional job at designing an amazing app.
But enough about other people's apps.