Sometimes it’s hard to concentrate. When you have a dizzying number of screens ringing around you, they can be more entertaining than helpful. But if some of those displays are running one of Apple’s newer versions of operating systems (iOS 15, iPadOS 15, WatchOS 8, and MacOS Monterey), there is a tool to make it easier.
It’s called Focus, and it lets you create separate profiles not only to control which notifications are allowed to interrupt you (if any), but also to rearrange the home screen to suit your current needs. Need all your professional applications in the front and center from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and alone messages from colleagues? Personalize and activate Work Focus! What about zero disturbance when you sleep? Go for the focus on sleep.
Here, we’ll walk you through the steps to create a custom focus.
How to access Focus
First, you need iOS 15 on your iPhone, iPadOS 15 on your iPad, WatchOS 8 on your Apple Watch, or MacOS Monterey on your Mac. (The latter is still in beta.) If you haven’t installed these versions, we have instructions here, as well as details on the many other new features. You should also back up your device before updating.
You can create up to 10 Focus profiles. They are all accessible from the Control Center, which you can access on modern iPhones and iPads by swiping down in the upper right corner. In previous models (i.e. anything that doesn’t have a Face ID), swipe up from the bottom of the screen. On Macs, Control Center is in the menu bar (the toggle icon) and on Apple Watch, just swipe up from the bottom. It is the symbol of the half moon. You can also go to Settings> Debug on iPhone and iPad, or System Preferences> Notifications and Focus on Mac. Focusing on Macs and Apple Watches is a bit more streamlined than what you get on iOS and iPadOS, as it doesn’t change your desktop or watch face layout in any way.
An important point: when you activate a focus, your focus status will be visible to your contacts. This acts the same as a status on messaging apps: if the app supports it and you’ve given it permission, your contacts will be able to see that you’ve turned off notifications, although they won’t. cannot see the name of your Focus. You can turn off this sharing feature in the settings menu for any focus by pressing Focus state and pressing the toggle.
If you have multiple Apple devices, your Focus will sync to each of them, so you won’t need to create new ones per gadget. And if you turn on a focus on your iPhone, it will turn on on all other devices, although you can turn it off by going to Settings> Debug> and deactivate Share on all devices.
Open the control center, press To concentrate, and you will be greeted with Do not disturb, Job, To sleep, and Staff. These are all presets you can configure, but you can remove the last three if you want to create profiles from scratch. Press the three-dot button next to each and Settings to configure them, or the “+” icon at the bottom to create a new Focus.
A Focus has three main components: notifications, home screen or lock screen personalization, and scheduling. With each Focus, you can allow calls and messages from certain contacts, and you can choose any app you want to always receive alerts from. Then you can choose to change the entire home screen to a personalized page with specific apps and widgets to suit the focus, as well as dim or hide screen notifications. lock. Finally, you can schedule a Focus to automatically turn on or trigger when you get to a certain location or open an app.