If you’ve installed iOS 16, you’ve probably already noticed that the notification system has changed. Most notably, notifications appear at the bottom of the screen, but there are other notifications-related changes. Apple recently rolled out iOS 16 and released a new iPhone 14, so it’s time to take a look at how notifications have changed overall.
First of all, there are two things that users generally think of when it comes to notifications. First, users think of the iPhone’s notification function as an important way to view people, messages, and app-related events at once. They prefer to be notified right away when a notification occurs. However, in this case, the current state of concentration may be disturbed, so at this time, the sound notification is turned off or the notification sound is treated as normal ambient noise. The second group of users is those who are distracted and disconnected by notifications. For them, notifications are unbearable pains that produce all sorts of unwanted side effects.
Focus mode and new notification methods
Apple already supports ‘Focus Mode’ to prevent users from experiencing this problem. It helps you manage your digital overload and allows you to prioritize more important tasks. In fact, how often and how your phone alerts work is critical to your productivity. According to Deloitte’s 2016 survey, people check their phones an average of 47 times a day. Mostly because of something like a notification.
Also, for most people, notifications on the iPhone appear in the most important place on the screen that controls the device. And tools that can be used in a personalized way are increasingly important in the digital experience. Focused mode is definitely a useful feature in this regard, but iOS 16 adds a new way to manage notifications that Apple supports.
If so, how did it change? First, Apple moved the notification message to the bottom of the screen. This is to prevent the lock screen from becoming cluttered. If you’ve installed iOS 16 (which accounts for 15% of all iPhone users, according to MixFamix Panel), you’ll immediately notice that users have more space to customize their lock screen.
It frees up more space, but the way notifications work is similar to before. Swipe up to see all notifications and do other things you need. On the other hand, there’s a new way to customize some of the ways it works. It mainly relates to creating three notification methods, which can be changed in the Settings > Notifications menu as follows:
- Count: Shows the number of notifications received and only some words. You have to swipe up to see the contents.
- Stack: Shows the application by grouping it into a stack. You also have to swipe up to do other tasks.
- List: As before, all notifications appear in the list.
If the only thing left to do is love or hate a notification, just swipe it down from the stack or list view. You are immediately switched to the count view. Ignore the whole notification for a moment and try to check later. In this situation, this feature will be very useful.
The value of alert summaries
Meanwhile, there is one more useful tool you should know about notifications. In 2021, Apple added a tool to help users manage their concentration: Notification Summary. This feature, first introduced in iOS 15, shows multiple notifications grouped together during a specific time period. By displaying a summary of notifications when needed, information overload can be avoided.
A situation where this feature particularly shines is when you want to get only the notifications you need when you really need them. You can group notifications from important but not urgent apps into a notification summary, or you can turn off notifications for apps you don’t want to know on a per-app basis. The fact that you don’t need the notification itself could be a sign that it’s OK to delete the app now.
The alert summary is itself very streamlined. The default is to show notifications only once in the morning and once in the evening, and you can adjust the time and frequency as you like. When a notification summary comes up, you can tap it to see all the notifications in the summary. To enable this feature, just turn on Settings > Notifications > Timed Summary. After that, the notification summary lets you choose when to show notifications, which apps to show, and more. In particular, if you enable this feature, it shows the apps that send the most notifications on a daily basis by the user. This will help you decide which of these apps to put in your notification summary.
Strive for Balance
Meanwhile, Apple continues to struggle to find a balance between productivity, technology, and what users do. In response, Apple CEO Tim Cook said he was avoiding the practice of “endless, meaningless scrolling,” a practice that so many people are addicted to right now. That’s why Apple develops the Screen Time feature and continues to improve the notification feature. This is to prevent users from immersing themselves in something.
Of course, this is a very subtle and difficult problem. In the end, users have to find their own balance between every day and conscious connectivity: constantly receiving notifications and turning them on and off as needed. As always, it takes some time to find the right settings for me. In my case, the ‘count’ type notification worked best.
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