How to set up Digital Wellbeing on your Android phone

How to set up Digital Wellbeing on your Android phone

Many of us pick up our smartphones several times a day to keep in touch with loved ones, watch videos on YouTube or endlessly scroll through our social media feeds. No matter what we use them for, we probably have a smartphone glued to our hands or nearby at all times. Some may call it an addiction, while others may cite the fear of missing new notifications. If you think you’re spending too much time on your phone, Android has a built-in tool called Digital Wellbeing to help you get back on track.


The Digital Wellbeing app has been a core part of the Android experience on many devices since 2019, so you may have come across it without realizing it. If you want to check out which apps have been taking up your personal screen time, the main Digital Wellbeing page is a great place to start.

For the purpose of this guide, some apps were opened multiple times and used longer than usual as a demonstration. Everyone’s device usage statistics will vary daily based on their habits and patterns at any given time.

Here’s how to access the main digital wellness page on your Android phone

  1. To open Settings app, scroll down and tap Digital Wellbeing and Parental Controls section.
  2. Tap the three-dot menu at the top right, then tap Manage your data.
  3. Hit Daily use of the deviceand then press Open settings.
  4. Press Digital well-beingthen activate Allow usage access option.
  5. Use the back arrow or gesture until you return to the main page.
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This gives you an overview of how much time you’ve spent on each of your apps for the day, presented in a nice colorful chart that’s easy to understand. If you tap an app name on the chart, you’ll get more specific details about that individual app Dashboard page.

You can see how much screen time the app has taken up for the day or another previous day, giving you a good idea of ​​how often you use it. To press on Screen time the drop-down menu also lets you see the number of notifications you got from that app and how many times you opened it.

You can also quickly see the number of times you have unlocked your phone from the main screen. The Unlocks the statistics are interesting because they let you know how many times you have picked up the phone – the total number can be shocking. Going back through your device’s unlocks from the previous days can also help you identify any patterns. You can then decide if you need to want to pick up the phone less often, which is a step in the right direction.

If you scroll down, you’ll see quite a few more options and features to help you customize your digital wellness to fit your personal needs.

How to use the Digital Wellbeing Dashboard

If you press Dashboard section, it will bring you to a new screen that shows you all the apps you’ve used at that time instead of one specific app. Just like before, you can go through the previous days and discover how much screen time you’ve used.

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When you find an app with high screen time, you can tap hourglass icon to the right to set an app timer. The app closes after the timer expires and the icon remains dimmed for the rest of the day. However, this is an honor system – nothing prevents you from overriding the timer and re-opening the app. Doing this defeats the purpose of digital wellness, but the choice is always there.

Bedtime mode

It’s well documented that fiddling with our phones around bedtime can negatively affect our sleep cycles. Bedtime mode trying to help curb the bad habit in several different ways. To avoid interference, you can mute the device by using Grayscale possibility to ease your eyes by reducing the colors, and disable the always-on screen. You can even set a schedule and it will automatically take care of itself from that point forward.

Focus mode

Some of your apps may send more notifications than others, possibly tempting you to check your phone every time it rings. These constant distractions can prevent you from completing certain tasks, such as work or other errands. Maybe you don’t want to stop notifications from an app for good, but to pause them for now. Focus mode was created for such an occasion, allowing you to select and hide any number of these distracting app notifications.

Heads Up

Since smartphones are portable devices that we can use anywhere, it was only a matter of time before distracted walking became a thing. For example, wandering into traffic has become a real problem today due to being focused on our smartphones. It is dangerous both for the individual walking and everyone else around them. Thus Heads Up the feature was introduced to Digital Wellbeing to prevent these accidents as much as possible. As noted by Google, this is just a tool and should not replace actually paying attention to your surroundings.

You can activate Show icon in app list option at the bottom to get faster access to Digital Wellbeing. This adds an app icon to the app drawer, which you can then drag and drop to the home screen. Alternatively, the Digital Wellbeing widget gives you instant access with one more tap Dashboard function mentioned above.

With the power of digital wellness now at your fingertips, you can better manage your smartphone use every day. You should be the one in control of your device, not the other way around – it only becomes a problem if you let it. So whether you have a smartphone addiction or just want to improve your productivity, knowing certain aspects of your device’s habits is really beneficial in the long run.

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