At its I/O 2018 developers conference earlier this year, Google introduced ‘Digital Wellbeing’, a feature that lets users track their smartphone usage with a high level of granularity. Baked right into Android Pie, the latest version of Google’s popular mobile operating system, Digital Wellbeing was initially available only for Google’s Pixel line-up of smartphones. Now, the feature is available (as a beta preview) for Android One-certified mobile phones, including HMD Global’s Nokia 7 Plus and Nokia 6.1 Plus.
The information was revealed by Juho Sarvikas, HMD Global’s Chief Product Officer, via a tweet.
— Juho Sarvikas (@sarvikas) October 20, 2018
The above-mentioned smartphones can get Google’s Digital Wellbeing app from the Play Store, provided they are running Android Pie. It’s worth mentioning that Nokia 7 Plus has already started receiving the newest version of Android, with the rollout having begun last month.
Talking about features, Digital Wellbeing provides a comprehensive dashboard of a user’s smartphone habits, tracking details such as total device unlocks, and time spent using specific apps. It can also be configured to automatically turn the display to greyscale and disable notifications at late hours (e.g. at night), so as to help the user ‘disconnect’ digitally. Digital Wellbeing also extends into YouTube, as the app can now be configured to periodically ‘remind’ users about taking breaks from continuously watching videos for an extended period of time.
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Apple’s newest iOS 12 also includes a ‘Screen Time’ feature that works identically to Digital Wellbeing. It can be used to track per-app usage, limit usage of certain kind of apps (e.g. social media), and even completely restrict access to specific apps.