Creating Alarms and Reminders for Windows Phone

Wednesday Feb 22nd 2012 by Vipul Vipul Patel
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Windows Phone Mango provides application developers the ability to create alarms and reminders in Windows Phone applications. This article walks you through creating alarms and reminders in your application.

Introduction

With Windows Phone Mango, Microsoft introduced over 500 new features, big and small. One of the features it introduced was programmatic access to the alarms and reminders feature on the Windows Phone platform.

Alarms and reminders are two types of scheduled notifications, both of which reside in the Microsoft.Phone.Scheduler namespace.

The difference between an alarm and a reminder is that a reminder includes all the features of the alarm but in addition, a user can specify a URI. When a reminder pops up, a user can click it resulting in launching of the application and the URI is passed to it.

Hands On

To see the behavior of alarms and reminders ourselves, let's create a demo application. Create a new Silverlight for Windows phone application called WPAlarmDemo.

Now, add 4 buttons called "Add Alarm", "Delete Alarm", "Add reminder" and "Delete Reminder".

Your UI at this point should look like this:

My Application UI
Figure 1: "My Application" UI

For simplicity's sake, we will set our alarm and reminder to 10 seconds from the current system time. This will help speed up our testing.

On the code behind for MainPage.xaml page (MainPage.xaml.cs), add two variables of type Alarm and Reminder called "alarm" and "reminder".

public partial class MainPage : PhoneApplicationPage
    {
        Alarm alarm;
        Reminder reminder;
        // Constructor
        public MainPage()

Double click the "Add Alarm" button and enter the following code

private void buttonAddAlarm_Click(object sender, RoutedEventArgs e)
        {
            alarm = new Alarm("MyAlarm");
            alarm.BeginTime = DateTime.Now.AddSeconds(10);
            alarm.Content = "Alarm has fired";
            ScheduledActionService.Add(alarm);
        }

Now Add code to remove the alarm from the ScheduledAction list.

private void buttonDeleteAlarm_Click(object sender, RoutedEventArgs e)
        {
            ScheduledActionService.Remove("MyAlarm");
        }

Now, add similar code for the event handler for the click event on "Add Reminder" button.

private void buttonAddReminder_Click(object sender, RoutedEventArgs e)
        {
            reminder = new Reminder("MyReminder");
            reminder.BeginTime = DateTime.Now.AddSeconds(10);
            reminder.Content = "Reminder has fired";
            reminder.Title = "Reminder Demo";
            ScheduledActionService.Add(reminder);
        }

Finally, add code to remove the reminder from the ScheduledAction list.

private void buttonDeleteReminder_Click(object sender, RoutedEventArgs e)
        {
            ScheduledActionService.Remove("MyReminder");
        }

You are now ready to test your sample. Compile and execute your sample. If you are having issues compiling the code, you can get the sample code for this exercise below.

When we execute the application, click on the "Add Alarm" button. Wait for 10 seconds; you will see an alarm notification on the application page.

Alarm notification
Figure 2: Alarm notification

We can dismiss the alarm by clicking the "dismiss" button.

Now, click the "Add Reminder" button. After 10 seconds, we see a reminder show up.

Reminder Demo
Figure 3: Reminder Demo

In this demo application, I have not specified an URI but you might want to consider using that to get the full leverage from the reminder feature.

Summary

In this article, we learned how to create alarms and reminders in a Windows Phone application.

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