Notifications on the iPhone and iPad are wonderful tools for staying in touch and keeping organized, but they can also be overwhelming. Recognizing that notifications can be more of a hindrance than a help, Apple has enhanced them in iOS 12. With these easy-to-follow New Year’s resolutions, you can take control of your notifications.
I Will Use Instant Tuning
Instant Tuning helps you reduce unwanted notifications. Next time you find yourself irritated at having received an unnecessary notification, swipe left on it and tap Manage to “tune” how that app sends notifications. Select Deliver Quietly to make the app’s notifications appear only in Notification Center, or Turn Off to banish them entirely. For more choices, such as changing or turning off a notification sound, tap Settings.
(To view Notification Center, pull down from the top center of the Home screen or swipe up on the Lock screen.)
I Will Process My Stacked Notifications
By default, iOS 12 automatically stacks notifications, bundling together multiple alerts from the same app, so you’re not overwhelmed by a suddenly chatty Messages conversation. To see all notifications in a stack, tap it. Once a stack is open, restack it by tapping Show Less, dismiss it by tapping its X button, or open a single notification by tapping it.
I Will Set Up a Do Not Disturb Schedule
Ever since iOS 6, the Do Not Disturb schedule option has allowed you to maintain quiet hours during which your device doesn’t play sounds or vibrations from notifications or calls (it can let certain calls through). To set up a schedule:
- Go to Settings > Do Not Disturb, enable the Scheduled switch, and tap From/To to specify your quiet hours. (For info about the Bedtime switch, see below.)
- Use the Silence area to set whether your device should play notification sounds and vibrations when you’re actively using it during quiet hours. To receive sounds and vibrations, select While Device Is Locked; otherwise, select Always.
- If you see a Phone area, use its options to avoid missing important calls. With Allow Calls From, you will still receive calls from selected contacts, and with Repeated Calls on, anyone who calls twice within 3 minutes will get through.
I’ll Use the Handy End Options When I Invoke Do Not Disturb Manually
In iOS 12’s Control Center, you can enable Do Not Disturb manually while simultaneously setting when it will turn off. Choices include in an hour, when you leave your current location, at the end of the current Calendar event, and at the end of the day. This is incredibly useful for those of us who would turn on Do Not Disturb during an appointment and then miss calls and texts due to forgetting to shut it off. We covered this clever Control Center feature in Do Not Disturb on the iPhone Is More Useful in iOS 12.
I Will Turn On Do Not Disturb’s Bedtime Option
The new Bedtime option in iOS 12 makes your Do Not Disturb schedule more effective. With Bedtime on, if you pick up your device during quiet hours, you’ll be able to see the time, but the Lock screen won’t light up fully. And, notifications will be routed to Notification Center so you won’t see them accidentally. To turn it on, go to Settings > Do Not Disturb and once you’ve set up a Do Not Disturb schedule, tap the Bedtime switch.
With Bedtime on, you can still view recent notifications by swiping up on the Lock screen to open Notification Center. If you have trouble resisting the temptation to check when you wake up in the middle of the night, go to Settings > Touch ID and Passcode (or Face ID and Passcode), and under Allow Access When Locked, disable Notification Center. With this switch disabled, to view Notification Center, you’ll have to unlock your device and swipe down from the top of the Home screen.
Implement these tips as New Year’s resolutions and you can avoid a dreary diet or impossible exercise regimen and make your iPhone or iPad less of a notification nag.