While the release of iOS 5 was a welcome one thanks to the inclusion of notifications, the popup alerts can be increasingly annoying. If you’re like me, you look at them with disdain, even more so as they pile up in Notifications Center. At some point, you’ve thought, is there a way to stop Facebook notifications? How can I end this alert and notification madness? Thankfully, it’s easy to do just that in both iOS 5 and even more so with Apple’s iOS 6. Here’s how to turn off notifications on iPhone and reclaim your time.
Since the advent of notifications, more and more apps have started to utilize them. Some for good reason, while some violate your willingness to accept their invitation only to alert you of promotions. Either way, we’re going to get them under control. From your iPhone, go to Settings > Notifications. If Settings is not readily available, swipe right and start typing ‘Settings’ to find it.
There should be two lists of apps. One that says ‘In Notification Center’ and the other ‘Not In Notification Center’. As you scroll, you’ll get an idea of how much damage you’ve done by viewing the number of apps you’ve permitted to use Notifications. You are not alone. At the time of writing this tutorial, I had a whopping fifty five apps using Notification Center. 55.
Let’s use Facebook as an example, all though in my case there worse offenders. Notifications can be categorized into two groups. There are alerts, which are the pop-ups that occur either in the middle of your screen. Banners appear briefly at the top and the vanish, often leaving you wondering about the contents of the message. You can set the Alert style to ‘None’, but that doesn’t turn off notifications. It won’t trouble you with alerts, but will fill up your notification center with messages.
If you don’t want any sort of alert or notification, you’ll want to select ‘Off’ next to Notification Center and then select an Alert Style of ‘None’. This will cage the animal completely, jettisoning them to the ‘Not In Notification Center’. Turning off alerts and notifications doesn’t signal the end of the relationship. You can always reverse course and turn them back on.
Removing Default Widgets From Notification Center
In addition to applications, you’ll also find Apple’s default widgets which include a Stock Widget, Weather Widget and a Share Widget. Don’t care about the stock market, click on the widget and set to Off. I’ve tweeted once from the Share Widget, so just today I switched that to Off. I can already feel the weight of a few widgets lifted.
Using Do Not Disturb
In iOS 6, Apple realized that notifications can be problematic, especially for those who enjoy sleep. If you back out of Notifications, you’ll see Do Not Disturb. You can toggle this On or Off, but configuration takes place in Notifications.
If you select Do Not Disturb, you can enable scheduling. Personally, I retire around 11pm each night and start my day at 7am. Those are my quiet hours. The next setting allows you to silence calls based upon grouping within your Contacts. You can set this to Friends, Work or even All Contacts. If someone in your contact list is calling you at midnight, it might be for good reason. A neat feature allows the first call to be silenced, but your iPhone will ring on repeated calls. If there is an emergency of some sort, a friend or family member might not be calling from a phone number that is familiar to your iPhone.
To recap, by removing and customizing your alerts, you can save yourself from needless interruptions. Not to mention, depending on how many you cut down, you’ll increase the battery life on your iPhone. Removing notifications doesn’t have to be permanent, as you can always re-enable them. So set your iPhone to Do Not Disturb and tame those unruly notifications.