Apple is making good on its promise to fight iPhone addiction. It’s introducing a suite of features in iOS 12 that curb the deluge of notifications and alerts that keep you hooked. To start, it’s much smarter about how and when it displays notifications. You’ll finally, finally see grouped notifications (no more wading through 10 alerts for the same app), for one thing. Do Not Disturb mode can silence all your notifications, too, so you’re not tempted to check updates if you wake up in the middle of the night. You can also quickly manage notifications for an app, including an option to “deliver quietly” so that your device won’t ping you every single time.
Accordingly, there are new tools to help manage screen time both for yourself and your family. You’ll get reports on your usage to show when you used your phones and which apps commanded your attention. And if you need to curb an Instagram habit, you can set App Limits that will warn you when you reach a daily usage quota — with kids, you can even set time allowances that prevent them from simply ignoring the warnings.
Some of the concepts here aren’t strictly new. Google’s Android P will rein in your digital activity as well. However, it’s hard to complain — it’s an acknowledgment that the constant attention grabbing of modern devices can sometimes hurt more than it helps.