Living with Push Notifications,
Day & Night

Living with Push Notifications,
Day & Night

Range Govindan
Aug 10, 2012

Push notifications are one of the most useful developments of smartphone technology, but there comes a time when they become tedious and bothersome. Who wants to be woken up in the middle of the night by your friend's latest updates? How do you stop your phone from annoying everybody around you with its incessant rings? Here's how I learned to optimize the way I work with push notifications without losing any sleep.

I've never kept my phone's ringer on — it's always on vibrate. Since my phone is always on me, it's pretty convenient to get an almost silent notification from it when it's in my pocket. For the past week, I've turned on LED Flash Alerts. This makes your phone emit a flash whenever you receive a notification. Go to Settings -> Accessibility and toggle on the switch for LED Flash for Alerts. You might have to fiddle with it for a bit, like I mentioned two weeks ago.

To make LED notifications work, you need a clear or transparent case. It's pointless to switch them on with an opaque case. There are a few different good clear cases on the market. I opted for a Power Support Air Jacket, which was readily available locally and made from medical grade silicone.

Depending on your surroundings, you might miss some notifications from time to time, even if your phone is right next to you. But it's almost impossible to miss LED flash notifications if the phone is within your field of vision.

I've trained myself to be quite sensitive to my phone's vibrations. It's something that everyone can try, but I can actually hear the vibration of my phone when I'm not in the same room. You can imagine how this plays out at night. The best way of muting all push notifications, without fiddling with my phone's settings too much, is to simply activate Airplane Mode. Go to Settings and toggle the switch. This deactivates all Wi-Fi, 3G, LTE features of your phone and will mute all notifications. It's a perfect way to silence your phone at night when you don't want to be bothered.

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(Images: Range Govindan)

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