During Google’s I/O conference last week the company took the time to concentrate on the health of its users. In the new Android P update coming this year, there’ll be access to a clear breakdown of your mobile phone usage to show you how much time you spend on your device and where you spend it most. Google also announced a new set of ‘take a break’ notifications for video-streaming giant YouTube.
These notifications are the first step for Google’s focus on your ‘digital-wellbeing’. Google wants users to be more aware of just how much time they spend online – especially time wasted watching videos. The ‘take a break’ notifications can be accessed through your YouTube general settings. The ‘Remind me to take a break’ option consists of various time intervals ranging from ‘Never’ to ‘Every 180 minutes’. We assume most people won’t even access this feature (maybe only to ensure that ‘Never’ is always selected).
These new notifications prove to be a bit of a contradictory dilemma for the video-streaming service. YouTube’s algorithm has been cleverly designed to ensure you keep watching, with tailored recommendations appearing after each video and videos playing in a continuous stream unless you press pause. The whole concept of YouTube has been designed to keep users watching for hours. Providing users with an ‘option’ to be reminded to take a break seems like a pretty laidback approach to our digital well-being.
Perhaps 2018 will be the first push towards monitoring and rationing online usage to free us from the digital world, if only for a few hours each day.
Source: Tech Crunch