How to Set up focus mode in your smartphone

set up focus

As the name implies, Focus Mode is a tool for eliminating distractions. It’s similar to Do Not Disturb but less complicated and more, well, focused. You might have Do Not Disturb on a schedule, whereas Focus Mode is mostly intended to be manually turned on whenever you need a break. if you must be productive you must learn how to set up a focus mode on your smartphone

What is focus mode

With Android Pie, Google announced a new tool that could help you curb the smartphone addiction. Dubbed as Digital Wellbeing, the feature offers a dashboard to show time spent on different apps and checking notifications etc. Another useful addition to the Digital Wellbeing feature came with Android 10 when Google added a new Focus Mode to it

This new mode allows you to select some apps on your phone that you think kill most of your time and you can block those for a while so you focus on something productive.

Why Focus Mode?

Focus Mode is just a more clarified version of Do Not Disturb. It stops notifications from specific apps and also blocks the app so that you cannot use it while the mode is active. So, you can not even accidentally open a distracting app when you busy at some work.

The general idea is you choose some apps and then when you turn on Focus Mode you can’t open or get notifications from them. It’s a simple way to quickly block out the apps that you find the most distracting.

However, you will not lose your notifications, as previous notifications will be restored once you turn off the focus mode, and also notifications that arrived while it was active.

How to Use Focus Mode

First of all, make sure your phone has a digital wellbeing app. If it still has not got it, you can download it from Play Store. Now, follow these steps to use focus mode on Android:

1] Go to Settings and then Digital Wellbeing & parental controls or directly open the app from the app drawer.

2] Now, under ‘Ways to disconnect’ you will see Focus mode and tap on it.

3] Here, select the apps that distract you the most by clicking on the boxes next to them.

4] Now, you can set a schedule by entering start time, end time as well as days of the week. Tap on Set after selecting your desired time.

5] Now, tap on Turn on now and focus mode will be active.

You can turn off the focus mode anytime by tapping on a button on the notification shade.

Take a break

You won’t be able to open the select apps for the select time. However, there is an option ‘take a break’, which lets you use the app for up to 30 minutes while focus mode is still on.

Now opening the Digital Wellbeing app every time to turn on Focus Mode could be a lengthy process. So you can add it to Quick Settings and to do so, drag down on your screen to open Quick Settings panel, and tap on the pencil icon in the bottom left. Scroll down the page until you find the Focus Mode, and then hold and drag it to add in the menu.

Now, you’ll be able to access Focus mode from your Quick Settings by just a tap to turn on.

Focus Mode on Google Pixel Phones

Focus Mode on Google Pixel phones is as close to the “default” implementation you’ll find. Non-Samsung Android devices will be similar. First, swipe down twice from the top of the screen and tap the gear icon to open the Settings.

Next, go to the “Digital Wellbeing & Parental Controls” section.

Go to the "Digital Wellbeing" section.

Select “Focus Mode.”

Select "Focus Mode."

The first thing to do is select the apps you want to block during Focus Mode. Scroll down and select the apps to block.

Choose apps to block.

Next, at the top, you can “Set a Schedule” when Focus Mode will automatically enable and disable itself. This isn’t required.

Set a schedule for Focus Mode.

You can turn Focus Mode on from the Settings screen, but it’s not very convenient. The better method is to add it to the Quick Settings tiles. Swipe down twice from the top of the screen and tap the pencil icon to edit the tile layout.

Set up Focus on iPhone

Focus is a feature that helps you concentrate on a task by minimizing distractions. When you need to focus, or step away from your iPhone, Focus can temporarily silence all notifications—or allow only specific notifications (for example, ones that match your task)—and let other people and apps know you’re busy.

You can choose from a list of provided Focus options or create your own.

Note: To quickly silence all notifications, open Control Center, tap Focus, then turn on Do Not Disturb. Do Not Disturb and Do Not Disturb While Driving are now part of Focus.

Set up a Focus

When you want to concentrate on a specific activity, you can customize a provided Focus option—for example, Driving, Personal, Sleep, or Work—or create a Custom Focus. You can silence notifications or allow only notifications from the people and apps that match your Focus—for example, set up a Work Focus and allow only notifications from your coworkers and the apps you need for work.

Likewise, you can customize a Home Screen page that has only apps related to your Focus and make that page the only one accessible during your Focus.

A screen showing five provided Focus options—Do Not Disturb, Driving, Personal, Sleep, and Work. The Share Across Devices button allows you to use the same Focus settings on all your Apple devices where you’re signed in with the same Apple ID.
  1. Go to Settings  > Focus.
  2. Tap a Focus—for example, Do Not Disturb, Driving, Personal, Sleep, or Work—then follow the onscreen instructions.
  3. After setting up your Focus, you can return to Settings > Focus at any time and change any of the following (which are initially set when you create your Focus):
    • Choose people you want to receive notifications from (if any) during this Focus: Tap People or Add Person, select contacts, then tap Done.
    • Choose whether you want to receive calls during this Focus: Tap Calls From, then select an option—Everyone, No One, Favorites, or All Contacts. To allow repeated calls (two or more calls from the same person within three minutes), turn on Allow Repeated Calls. Then tap the Back button at the top left.

      Note: Regardless of your Focus settings, calls from your emergency contacts will always come through. See Allow calls from emergency contacts when notifications are silenced.

    • Choose apps you want to receive notifications from (if any) during this Focus: Tap Apps or Add App, select apps, then tap Done.
    • Choose whether you want to allow all apps to send you time-sensitive notifications immediately during this Focus: Turn on Time Sensitive, then tap the Back button at the top left.
    • Choose whether you want to allow apps to display that you’ve silenced notifications: Tap Focus Status, then turn Share Focus Status on or off. When you turn it on, people who message you see that you have notifications silenced, but not which Focus you’re using.
    • Choose the Home Screen pages you want to access (if any) during this Focus: Tap Home Screen, turn on Custom Pages, select the Home Screen pages you want to use during this Focus, then tap Done.

      Tip: You can move the apps for this Focus to one Home Screen page, then select that page.

    • Allow silenced notifications to appear on the Lock Screen, or dim the Lock Screen: Tap Lock Screen, then turn on Show On Lock Screen. You can also turn on Dim Lock Screen to dim the Lock Screen during this Focus.

To use a Focus after setting it up, you can either turn it on in Control Center, or schedule it to turn on automatically.

When you set up a Sleep Focus, you can also change your next bedtime and wake-up time, or adjust your sleep schedule by tapping Set Up Sleep in Health

Naijateck is Nigeria’s information and communication portal for technology news, Modern Research and Vital information


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