#PMChallenge - An inbuilt productivity manager

  1. kunal4
    Gingerbread Feb 4, 2019

    kunal4 , Feb 4, 2019 :
    A productivity manager / app blocker

    Who are the users?

    Anyone (like me) who struggles to control screen time, and needs to rely on apps like Forest or Tasker to achieve that.

    What if the proposed function?

    It might seem a little counterintuitive, but a function which helps limit screen time. To put it simply, allowing users to set a time limit on the apps they use, let them view how much they've spent on a particular app or screen, ala Digital Wellbeing, but go beyond Wellbeing such that they're able to disable or block access to a particular app for a certain amount of time, or for the day if they've spent a certain time on it already.

    Of course, there would be certain essential tasks that would not be counted in this, like phone, messages, maps or payment apps.

    What is the user value?

    More granular access to how and what people use their phones for, and an ability to control it, or let the phone control it for them if they set some rules.

    If there are existing comparable functions in the smartphone industry, how is your proposed feature superior?

    There are third party apps which try to achieve this, but it can be overridden pretty easily as they don't have system level permissions which would be required. There's also Digital Wellbeing, but I don't know if Google has any plans for moving beyond Android One and Pixel phones right now. Also, digital wellbeing's wind down feature is cool, but is not prohibitive enough, at least for me. I personally use Tasker, but it's a pain to set it up.

    Simply - A function similar to digital wellbeing, which will also allow users to set soft and hard time limits on the apps they use.

    As for interaction with other parts of the UI, we could use the Tags used in the app drawer to categorise apps for this too, and show active screen time for each app / category and set a limit according to it.

    It's pretty similar to what Apple does with it's screen time feature -

    Screenshot from 2019-02-05 17-57-04.png

    After the time limit has passed, opening an app would look just like it is locked, but without the password option field - Or a password input field which is different to the normal lock, one set by parents, for example.

    Last edited: Feb 5, 2019

    Ruby G., _AkshayRaj and MJCass like this.