With iOS 12 due in a few months, Apple wants us to use our iPhone more so we use it less. That makes sense, right? Of course not. But it’s true. iOS 12 comes with new controls to help us, well, control our iPhones better.
That means we get options to view how much we use and view our iPhones so we can see how they impact our time, so we can control our addictions. Why? Because iPhone addiction is a thing. No. Wait. Not quite. Smartphone addiction is a thing, and even though Apple’s iconic iPhone accounts for a much smaller share of the market than Android smartphones, Apple gets blamed for everything so Apple is at fault, so Apple needs a solution.
What’s the solution? More screen time.
iOS 12 promises a number of user friendly options, some of which may help us control our addictive tendencies to use iPhone all the time. To get there, we’re likely to use iPhone even more. Here are some examples.
Performance – Apple promises iOS 12 will be faster and smoother. How is that supposed to help us use iPhones less? Apps will launch faster, not slower. Even camera access and share sheets will be faster. Will that help us use iPhone less? No.
Messages – Texting is out of control. Yes, it may depend upon your generation, but when you see kids hovering over their iPhones rest assured they not reading President Trump’s tweets or checking the latest news on CNN. It’s YouTube or Messages. iOS 12 promises more text options from personalized Animoji in the way of Memoji, to camera effects and more. Will that help us use iPhone less? No.
Notifications – One of the reasons we have become somewhat addicted (or, morbidly addicted) to our iPhones is how we handle notifications. We love notifications. It stimulates the dopamine effect so we are eager to check Facebook, view Instagram, see a new text message, and we do so with abandon. That’s the addiction part but iOS 12 has more granular controls to help curb those urgent feelings to respond to every bleep or beep. Will more Notifications controls help us use iPhone less. Yes. And No. We have to use it more to use it less.
I could go on and describe all the new cool items coming in iOS 12. There’s Augmented Reality options, more Photos and Camera features, an improved Siri and more Privacy and Security, but what’s really important is screen time. Or, rather, Screen Time– a new set of features that monitor how much we use which apps, and with options to help curb usage.
In other words, we have to use our iPhones more so we use them less.
Screen Time – We’ll get new tools to manage how much our children use their iPhones and which apps can be accessible and even when they can be– and not be– used. The Downtime functionality ends app usage at certain times. No more waking up at 2:00 AM to check Messages or Mail or QuakeWatch. You can even set limits on which apps you use each day and when. It works on children’s iPhones, too. Even better, Screen Time has a bunch of cool looking and information reports so you can quickly view how much and when you use specific applications.
All these new features in iOS 12 will have a similar impact. We will use iPhone even more, but if you want to curb your addictions so you use it less, you’ll have to use it more to figure out how to use it less.