Apple announces slew of controls to help with smartphone addiction

Image Jacob Krol  mashable

With so much concern about smartphone addiction, it seems nearly certain that Apple will include more health and wellbeing controls in iOS 12.

"In iOS 12, we're offering our users detailed information and tools to help them better understand and control the time they spend with apps and websites, how often they pick up their iPhone or iPad during the day and how they receive notifications", said Craig Federighi, Apple's senior vice president of software engineering.

Helping consumers and parents combat addiction and encourage healthier relationships with technology is expected to be on Apple's agenda at its annual Worldwide Developers Conference on Monday.

The iPhone's new Screentime app in iOS 12 allows users to see detailed reports about how frequently they use their phone and, specifically, individual apps, too. Executives decided in January to postpone more advanced features, like a new design for the Home screen and a new Photos app, to focus on quality, Bloomberg News reported earlier this year. "We may not even recognize how distracted we've become".

You will also be able to set time limits for how long you want to use certain apps on daily basis.

The moves come as Apple has been under fire from some technologists and investors over concerns that the company's devices may be fuelling addiction and mental-health issues, particularly among children and teens.

There's also a new version of Apple's mobile operating system coming out this fall. We kid, of course, but let's see what the public says!

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Apple rolled out new support for augmented reality applications as it unveiled a new format for digital objects that appear to live in the real world.

Last but not least, Animoji in iOS 12 is gaining a new feature Apple dubbed Tongue Detection, which essentially entails that Animoji will now support detecting and animating your tongue as you use them. Similarly, if you order coffee every morning from an app on your iPhone, Siri will suggest ordering one every morning for you.

Another headline announcement at Apple's event was the firm's firmer stance on protecting user data.

Apple has sought to position itself as a leader in digital privacy, and chief executive officer Tim Cook has publicly sparred with Mark Zuckerberg over the Facebook CEO's data-sharing controversies. However, Apple users typically upgrade to new software releases more quickly than Android users, exposing them to Apple's latest apps and services, which generate revenue for the iPhone maker as well as app developers.

Parents will get even more information and oversight, including the ability to see their child's activity report from their own device and the power to schedule times (around bed time, for example) when certain apps can not be used. Changes include a better Do Not Disturb feature, quiet notifications, set limits on how long an app one wants to use and app allowances.

Even crazier, Apple has stated that up to 32 different people can take part in a group video chat at the same time.

Furthermore, a new Memoji feature will allow you to animate yourself and build a customized avatar.

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