Google has introduced its screen time management feature called Digital Wellbeing with the Android Pie on its Pixel devices, last year. All the prominent phones launched this year come with the Digital Wellbeing feature that lets users have a summary of their most regularly used apps and can set time limits for each specific most used app to control the smartphone addiction amongst the users. Once a particular timer is set to an app in the Digital Wellbeing users will not be able to access the app; however, they can override it manually.
This Digital Wellbeing appears to be extended to Pixel launcher, which is developed by Google as well. Folks at XDA Developers have tried this new feature on the launcher on the Pixel 2 XL running on the recently released Android Q Developer Beta 1 Version. The report states that including the Pixel launcher, Google might also allow third-party launchers to integrate this feature through Android Q as well. Further, the feature is still being tested and the official rollout might be available in the upcoming updates of the Android Q.
The Digital Wellbeing integrated Pixel Launcher will grey out the app icons on the home screen itself and also allows users to pause the apps and eventually lock them as well. The report further reveals it is slightly different from the timer functionality of the Digital Wellbeing app wherein users need to set the timer for a particular app; instead a user can pause the app directly from the launcher. The unpausing is indeed not similar to what we see on the Digital Wellbeing settings, and users need to put in more effort and requires few more clicks than the usual – to manually override it as well.
Google’s approach with this new integration in the Android Q within the launcher hints us its stand on the smartphone addiction, and we can say its a step in the right direction for the future smartphone addicts.