Most folks lose track of time once they unlock their phone. With interesting apps like YouTube and Instagram in the mix, one stays glued to the endless loop of watching videos.
The moment you plan to focus on your work, the notification ding will make sure that you pick up the phone right away. And so begins the horrendous circle of phone addiction.
Digital Wellbeing was one of Google’s breakthrough innovations at Google I/O 2018. Unfortunately, it’s limited to Pixel phones and is not a part of the official Android Pie package, at least for now. Though many phones like the Huawei Mate 20 Pro and the Samsung Galaxy S10 have their respective versions, I can't say the same about the OnePlus 6T.
Yeah, the OnePlus 6T packs several built-in features that make it a top pick and the third-party apps further add to the experience. But what do you do when you want to track the time you spend (or waste) on it?
Until the company introduces a smarter way to get digital wellbeing on your OnePlus 6T, we have a simple solution for you in the form of ActionDash.
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What is ActionDash
ActionDash is a relatively new app on the Play Store that does its best to replicate Google’s Digital Wellbeing features. The developers of Action Launcher created ActionDash.
The app weighs just 5.8MB. The app crossed over a hundred thousand downloads since its release in January 2019.
If you have seen Google’s Digital Wellbeing before, you might find it hard to differentiate between the two apps. This also means that similar to other Google apps, the interface is simple and easy to understand. The landing page has a small chart depicting your everyday usage. What's more, ActionDash also lets you see the number of unlocks and notifications.
The app offers a convenient way to visualize your daily data and weekly usage statistics. And if the image fails to convince you, the detailed statistics will make sure that you think about the time you spend hooked on to your phone.
To check the details, just swipe left to see the number of minutes you spend on each app. A tap on the app name will give you a precise breakdown of the screen time, app launches and notifications.
Furthermore, you can also disable notifications from apps that spam you unnecessarily. To do that, tap on the app name and hit the bell-shaped icon. Now, tap on Notification settings and toggle the switch off.
However, the feature that gives a real jolt to people (like me) who are addicted to their cellphones sits under the Unlock tab.
It tracks how often you unlock your phone and presents the data via a simple chart. ActionDash will display the time and length of the sessions. In short, this is the tab that shows you the harsh reality of digital addiction.
The best thing about ActionDash is that it doesn't run a distractive timer on the homescreen or the status bar. It works silently in the background to track and collect relevant information. Also, it doesn't keep nudging you about your screen-on time.
It merely sends you a concise report card of your phone usage at the end of the day. So, it all depends on how you improve your habits in the long run.
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Customize the Settings
Similar to most Android apps, you can also customize some of the settings like usage reports, the first day of the week, and others.
To change the settings, tap on the three-dot icon at the upper-right corner and select Settings. Other than changing the time of the day or week, you can also choose to exclude the system apps and launchers, so that your usage statistics don't go haywire.
Did You Know: You can keep track of your phone's notification history.
Limitations of ActionDash
I wish that ActionDash would also let you exclude apps like Google Maps. Because when you use Maps for navigation, it miscalculates the screen-on time, as you can see from the screenshot below.
The free version of ActionDash displays almost everything except some features like Dark Mode and full usage history which are available only through the paid version. The paid version is available for under $2. Also, upgrading to the paid version will also remove the ads.
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Are There Any Alternatives?
Until Google includes Digital Wellbeing, it’ll be hard to find a worthy alternative to ActionDash. The Play Store carries several apps that can give you a clear idea of the time you spend on your phone.
One such app is Your Hour which gives a clear breakdown. Not only that, but you can also set the number of times you unlock your phone along with your screen time.
Also, there’s a timer that runs on top of every app the second you launch it, thus giving you real-time data. Your Hour has other neat features like session time per app, history of your phone usage over a week and the number of launches per app.
For now, Action Launcher’s ActionDash is one of the best ways to get Pixel-like Digital wellbeing features on your OnePlus 6T. It’s light, clean, easy to understand and the options are self-explanatory.
So, does this app measure up to your expectations? Do let us know in the comments below.
Next up: Slow motion is one of the most hyped features of the OnePlus 6T. However, there are hardly any video-editing options. Check out the following post to enhance your video making skills.