Google’s New Digital Wellbeing Feature: Is it really New?

Google’s New Digital Wellbeing Feature: Is it really New?

Advancement of technology has brought us many comforts, but it has also led to smartphone addiction. With each passing year it is turning into an obsession and is affecting our lives. The rate at which we are becoming reliant on smartphone is alarming.

In this respect, Google’s CEO Sundar Pichai at annual developer conference I/O 2018 has a launched a new feature called “Digital Wellbeing.” Aiming to help people deal with their smartphone addiction and understand what smart usage of a cell phone is.

But this raises a question why and what made Google bring this feature? When Google is the cause of the problem why is it trying to play doctor now? Can this announcement be linked with Facebook’s Cambridge Analytica Data Scandal, or there is something else to it? Is Google really concerned about increasing smartphone addiction or is it all a myth, to keep itself safe and fly under the radar?

All these doubts might arise in your mind after hearing about this new feature.

But, looking at how things are turning it seems Google is just trying to play safe with this new Digital Wellbeing feature. It might have envisioned the future and to avoid a similar event this approach is adopted. Instead of redesigning/ modifying the policies, why not to bring a new feature and reform digital safety around personal health and wellbeing to keep users trust intact.

Google’s vice president Sameer Samat (product management) has said: “Helping people with their digital wellbeing is more important to us than ever.”

This new feature will be added to the latest version of Android P. Part of this is Android Dashboard, App Timer, Do Not Disturb and Wind Down.

Android Dashboard: A type of analytics tool that shows phone unlocked data.

App Time: An app manager tool, that will show time spent with each app and allows user to set app usage limit for each app.

Do Not Disturb: Mute calls and messages.

Wind-down mode: Turns phone screen into grayscale before bedtime

google well being

But don’t you think, it’s too late? Google is paying attention to this problem when others have already developed apps to tackle the problem of Tech addiction. Google is not doing anything new or great. It’s just the name that may attract you and make you believe in it.

Instead of bringing something that is already there, why isn’t Google taking any step to cut down tech consumption?

To clarify what we are trying to say, we will describe an app named Social Fever. You can than compare between Google’s Digital Wellbeing and Social Fever and see if there anything new that Google is offering.

Social Fever: Disconnect From The Digital world & Re-connect with Reality

Spending too much time with apps like, Facebook, WhatsApp, Instagram and others isn’t going to help you. You are just wasting time, if you’re using these apps anytime in the day for long hours. You can do other important things in this time and your body, eyes, ears need to relax. Time once gone doesn’t come back. Therefore, you should start thinking now.

Use Social Fever app and take charge of your life. Set goals and limit app usage.

Time to do something worthwhile and achieve real-life goals.

Social Fever app delivers thorough report of smartphone usage on regular intervals and notifies if the set limit is exceeded. Thus, making you a smart user. Let’s discuss its features in detail.

Track Goals: This section allows you to keep a check on application usage. All you need is to add applications that you want to keep a check on. Tap on the floating green icon, in the new window that opens select the apps you want to add. Here you’ll see two sections: RECOMMENDED and ALL select the apps and then tap on Let’s Go.

Once the apps are added you will see them under Tracking Detail.

track goals

Plus, you can even see Screen Active time, number of times phone was unlocked.

From Tracking Detail, you can edit and change the time limit for individual app usage. To do so you need to tap on edit. Also, you can delete the app by tapping on delete.

To add more apps, click on the ‘+’ sign at the bottom right corner of Tracking Detail window.

screen activity time

To see individual app usage tap on the app and you will be able to see a time line with three sections: Daily App Usage, Last 7-day App Usage History and Today’s App Usage %.

track amazon prime video on social fever

Manage Quality Time: Here, you can set a profile to enjoy distraction free time with your family, friends or with yourself. By default, you will see three profiles. You can create more or can make customize them according to you.
Using this feature, you can create a default message that will be sent to people who will call or message you when you have enabled Quality Time. Also, you can whitelist contacts that can contact you during Quality Time.

manage quality time

Water Reminder: Water keeps your body hydrated, but most of us forget to drink water. That is when this feature proves to be beneficial. Using this you can feature you can set Water Reminder.

To set the reminder tap on water reminder > tap on default time and change the time when you. Here changes the time as you want.

water reminder social fever

Ear Health: We all like to listen to music on the go, but most of the time we don’t know for how long we have been doing so. Under this section you can set reminder for earphone usage, and if the limit is crossed a warning message is displayed. By default, it is set to 30 minutes. You can alter it by tapping on number of minutes.

ear health social fever

Eye Health: Similar to Ear Health you can set Eye Health reminder too. If you have been looking at your mobile screen for long, the app shows you a reminder. Thus, making helping you to give some rest to your eyes. By default, it shows notification after 30 minutes which can be modified.

eye health social fever

Interests: In our busy life we tend to forget our interests. Social Fever app connects you them. Once you set the interests the app tells you what you could have done in the saved time. You can set interests like hiking, bicycle riding, cooking, dancing, gardening, swimming, yoga and much more.

Select the interest and tap the ‘heart’, press SAVE to let the app remember your interest.

social fever set interest

App Usage: View a compact summary of individual app usage time. Click on “More” to view details of total usage.

track app usages

History: Want to view total app usage history tap on History icon and see a graph to check total usage of apps for last 7 days.

track your last history

Features under Settings:

setting feature

  • Show app tracking: Enable “Show app tracking” feature, to see real time tracker against each selected app.
  • Water Reminder: Enable it to receive water reminder notification.
  • Show daily report: Want to see if you have met the goals or not look under this section.
  • Phone Unlock Logs: See how many times you unlock the phone in day through this section.
  • Clear History: From this section, you can clean today’s tracking history, old tracking history, and clear app data.
  • Show Interest: Wish to edit interests using “Show Interest”, option.
  • Show tutorial: Want to see the tutorial once again use this section.
  • Backstage Power Saving: Use this option to let Social Fever app keep running while power saving mode is ON.

Conclusion:

Undoubtedly, Social Fever is a futuristic app. It offers amazing features, that will help you fight with smartphone addiction. Real time tracker, daily reminders, daily and weekly report, app usage history, set interests, eye & ear health and much more will help you to be a smart user. Using the app, you can save your valuable time and can spend it on other important things or with your real family & friends. Download this app and suggest to your social-addicted friends & relatives!

Preeti is a technical writer with Systweak. She covers new technology and troubleshooting. She loves gadgets and is an avid reader. In her free time, she likes to travel and explore new places solo.

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