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Do you want to reduce the use of social networks? Or maybe you want to reduce the time you spend on social media on an iOS family device? The new screen time of the iPhone and iPad feature can make that easier than ever before, by allowing you to set a time limit for using social networks within a chosen time limit per day.
For example, you might want to set a daily time limit of 15 minutes for using social networks so that you or someone else don’t waste an hour per day nonsense through Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or the like. That’s just the kind of restriction you can put on social media usage with the Screen Time feature in iOS.
Screen Time requires an iPhone or iPad with iOS 12 or later as previous versions of iOS software use the feature.
How to Limit social media usage with Screen Time for iPhone or iPad
This will show you how to set a simple time limit for all social media apps and use of social networks on an iPhone or iPad by using screen time feature:
- Open the “Settings” app on the iPhone or iPad
- Go to ‘Screen Time’
- Choose ‘App Limits’
- Select ‘Add Limit’ in the App Limits section
- Find and tap “Social Networking” so that it is selected, then tap “Add”
- Use the slider to select the time limit you want to enforce on all ‘Social Networking’ apps, then tap ‘Back’ or exit Settings when done
That’s it, now you have set a defined time limit on all social networks and social media for that device. This will also guide all social network apps and social media websites accessible on iPhone or iPad with Screen Time settings in this way.
Once you reach that time limit and you are in a social networking app, the screen will go blank with an hourglass icon and you will be informed that you have reached the time limit for that particular app or app category.
You can always override the imposed time limit by tapping “Override Limit” if desired (this may require a password to override the limit if you have set it). up that way, perfect for parents and family), but ignoring a time limit for app usage or social networking defeats the purpose of setting those limits within Screen Time.
Screen time can be very useful in helping you or someone else reduce time wasted on social media and social networks, keep in mind that if you are reading something in a limited app, or watching something interesting, like a video, and both these take place in an app with limited screen time, then you can reach the limit because you participate in the media consumption within a social app. Of course, you can ignore the time limit, or just open the video or article in a web browser or something similar to continue enjoying what you are doing beyond the time limit.
Using social networks can be beneficial for some people, as it increases dialogue and keeps you engaged up to date events, follow friends and family and colleagues from decades ago, or maybe you just like falling for fake news and propaganda that is ubiquitous on social media, but for many others it can be a huge flush of time with little redemptive value, or even downright harmful to well-being and mental health. The whole topic is fascinating and there is no shortage of studies on social networks, with mixed evidence showing different results with regard to social media use.
And of course, you can always turn off Screen Time in iOS or remove the time limits if you want to at any time, just by returning to Screen Time settings and adjusting as needed.
Do you use Screen Time on an iPhone or iPad? Do you limit the use of social networks and social media? Share your experiences and thoughts below, and if you have any others tips or tricks pertaining to this general topic, share the ones below in the comments too!
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