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Technology This new Google feature helps fight your Android app addiction

21:05  06 december  2019
21:05  06 december  2019 Source:   cnet.com

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If you get distracted easily by app notifications constantly pinging you, you can now outsource some self-discipline. Focus Mode is a newly launched Android feature that brushes aside distracting apps -- maybe for you it's Facebook , YouTube or Instagram -- while you mentally dive into what you need to do. The tool uses a timer that keeps you from accessing certain apps for a set amount of time. When the time's up, Google will unpause the app.

a screenshot of a cell phone: Focus Mode is located in the Digital Wellbeing app. Screenshot by Katie Conner/CNET© Provided by CBS Interactive Inc. Focus Mode is located in the Digital Wellbeing app. Screenshot by Katie Conner/CNET a close up of a cell phone: Samsung's Galaxy S10 Plus with One UI's dark mode enabled. © CNET

Samsung's Galaxy S10 Plus with One UI's dark mode enabled.

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Focus Mode is Google's latest feature intended to promote something it calls digital health. It builds off Wind Down mode, a part of Android's Digital Wellbeing feature set that turns the screen to grayscale if you schedule it to each night or manually turn it on. The idea is to make the screen less compelling to look at while also counteracting the blue light that's believed to disrupt sleep patterns and keep you awake longer.

Google believes that app timers, like those in Focus Mode, help people keep from overusing apps more than 90% of the time. You can choose which apps you'd like to pause, like Facebook and Instagram, which tend to interrupt you with notifications. But you can also keep some messaging apps open for emergencies.

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It's available on all devices that currently have Digital Wellbeing and parental control settings, including new phones launching with Android 9 and Android 10 -- but if you don't see it yet, you may need to update to the latest version. (Here's how to get Android 10.)

a hand holding a cellphone: Focus Mode is now available on all devices that currently have Digital Wellbeing. Jason Cipriani/CNET© Provided by CBS Interactive Inc. Focus Mode is now available on all devices that currently have Digital Wellbeing. Jason Cipriani/CNET

How to use Focus Mode for Android

1. Open your Digital Wellbeing app.

2. On the dashboard, select Focus Mode.

3. Tap on the box to the right of each app that you want to disable. You may have to select Show all apps if they're not visible.

4. Tap Turn on now.

5. You'll notice that all of your paused apps are grayed out. If you try to open the app, a box will open that says Focus Mode is on. You can either select Settings to make changes or tap OK to leave the app disabled.

6. When you're ready to stop pausing your apps, go back into the Focus Mode settings and tap Turn off now.

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Use Quick Settings to turn Focus Mode on

1. If you're looking for a quicker way to turn Focus Mode on, open your Quick Settings menu.

2. Tap on Focus Mode. This will pause any apps you've got selected in your settings.

3. To make changes to the apps you have paused, you'll have to go into the Digital Wellbeing app.

4. That's it! Now you can concentrate on the task at hand, rather than looking down at your phone each time you get a notification.

Ready for more Android 10 tips? Here's the complete guide to Android 10's new gesture navigation. Oh, and here's how you'll use Android 10.

Android 10 beta's best new tricks from Google I/O 2019

Originally published earlier this year. Updated to include it's now out of beta testing.

Google is rolling out Focus mode to Android to help you take a break .
First announced at IO, the feature is finally ready for release.The new mode is part of Google's Digital Wellbeing tool on Android and designed to help you remove some of the many distractions phones often provide so you can focus on what you need to get done. With the feature enabled, you can select the apps that you find the most distracting such as a social media app, video app or games. If you try to open them, Focus mode will "remind you that app is paused," Android project manager Dayson Pais writes in a blog post announcing the rollout.

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