It’s easy to do just about anything with your smartphone. From paying your bills to ordering groceries, once-arduous tasks can be completed in minutes. If you’re like many people, however, you may be concerned about the amount of time you’re spending on your phone. Luckily there are a number of excellent apps that can help you gain a little balance. Here are our six favorite apps to help you reduce screen time.
Once limited to Mac, Freedom is now available for your iPhone and iPad. Freedom allows you to create blocklists and schedule time away from the apps that may be most distracting. Since there is a Freedom app for both iOS and Mac, it’s easy to create custom blocklists for all of your devices. While Freedom offers a free trial period, a monthly subscription, at $7 per month or $29 for the year, is required to access all of its features.
Although In Moment has a minimal aesthetic, it’s one of our favorite apps to help curb social media use. In Moment tracks and provides historical data on your social media habit. In addition to telling you how much time you’re spending on Instagram or Twitter, In Moment allows you to set limits on your daily social media usage. Monthly subscriptions for In Moment start at $10 and are billed automatically through the App Store.
Space is a little different than many of the other screen time apps. Space helps you set goals to be more mindful of your screen usage. When you install Space, you’ll complete a short questionnaire about your smartphone habits and then select a user type that is the best match. The app then sets screen unlock and time use goals. The app will send notifications as screen time increases and reward you with different achievement badges when you meet your daily goals.
App Detox allows you to easily create rules to limit access to certain apps. The usual schedule and time-based limitations are available, as well as an option that requires to you walk in order to earn screen time. App Detox is one of the few apps that provides a “Forever” option for apps that cannot be deleted from your phone.
Off the Grid
For those who truly have a problem staying off that phone, Off the Grid may be for you. Off the Grid completely blocks your phone for a length of time you determine. Should you get the urge to use your phone after you’ve activated Off the Grid, it’s going to cost you. The app will charge your credit card $1 for each time you end your session early.
AntiSocial is one of the best-known screen-reduction apps available on Android. While it provides many of the standard features like screen time limits and app blocking, it has an interesting trick up its sleeve. AntiSocial compares your screen usage data to other people in your age and gender cohort, so you’ll have an idea if you’re using your device more than your peers.