I Tried Out The New iOS Screen Time Update & Learned So Much About Myself

Okay so I’ll be honest here, I’m glued to my phone. Unless it’s on Do Not Disturb or dead, I will not let my phone out of my sight. To be honest, I don’t keep a track of my usage of my phone. All I know is that it’s on the higher spectrum. When I saw the new update with the screen usage data, I knew my self assuring statements of “I’m sure it’s not much” and “I usually am reading on this” would not hold much weight. 

So this week, I took the plunge and decided to use the new update. I will admit to one thing—I started of with a timer of 3 hours on my social media consumption, but by the second day, I increased it to 3 hours and 45 minutes. I’m only human!

I started this challenge on Tuesday and ended it on Friday. I also completely forgot about the task I’d decided to undertake, so when my social media apps started giving reminders that I’ve got only 15 minutes till my limit on the first day, I was surprised to say the least.

My one complaint is that the update doesn’t let us customize what we consider as social media, so while Snapchat and WhatsApp fall under social media, they're also my primary mode of communication, and I could’ve missed many notifications if it weren't for the fact my Apple Watch still received notifications. This leads to my second point (not complaint)—you can still get around the restriction if you have an Apple Watch because the notifications still come through on there.

I will admit that I appreciate the fifteen minute warning and was more conscious of my usage when it came up, but it didn’t stop me from just snoozing the reminder. Turns out, I might have a greater smartphone problem than I anticipated.

Yes, I did try to reduce my usage, I was more conscious when I realized my limit had neared, but did it succeed? It's hard to say because while it made me reflect on my usage (something I never do), the stats say that my time on my phone really hasn’t changed much. I didn’t use all the features of this update, but I suggest that you keep fiddling with the settings until you reach a point that you are comfortable, and build up to your ultimate goal from there. I know that after this, I will be trying to reduce my social media usage to at least 2 hours a day. 

So good luck if you’re going to give the new update a try, and even if you’re not, it’s still cool to get data about yourself and your relationship with your phone!