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Smartphones & gadgets

iPhone how-to: Set up Do Not Disturb

Look, we all have times when we don’t want to be disturbed, and our phones can easily become the worst kind of distraction. For all those times, iPhone has Do Not Disturb mode, which can even be customized to suit your every need.

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It’s easy to understand why you might want to use Do Not Disturb mode, but how exactly does it work; how do you set it up; and what are the best uses for it? Read on to find out the answers to all those questions and more, regardless of what iPhone you’re using!

What is Do Not Disturb mode?

Turning on Do Not Disturb mode is a way to quickly silence your iPhone. With Do Not Disturb on, notifications and calls are silenced and will not light up the screen.

For many years on iOS across the iPhone line, turning on Do Not Disturb has been easy: Simply open the Control Center (either swipe up from the bottom of your device or down from the top) and tap the Crescent Moon icon.

Whether you’re simply going to bed and don’t want to be distracted by beeps or buzzing; you’re catching a movie and don’t want to bother your fellow moviegoers; or you’re going into an important meeting and you have to focus, turning on Do Not Disturb mode is a quick way to make sure you aren’t bothered by your phone.

How to customize Do Not Disturb mode

What if you don’t want to be distracted because you’re waiting for an important call, or what if some people are never distractions to you and you’d always like to take their calls? Thankfully there are a number of ways to customize Do Not Disturb mode to your liking:

  • Always silence notifications or only silence them when your iPhone is locked
  • Choose to allow calls from anyone you’d like
  • Choose to allow repeated calls
  • Enable auto-reply for anyone you’d like

To change these Do Not Disturb settings, simply open the Settings app and tap Do Not Disturb.

From within the Do Not Disturb settings you can also set up a Do Not Disturb schedule. By selecting whatever time period you’d like and toggling Scheduled on, your phone will automatically enter Do Not Disturb mode for your selected time.

This is particularly useful if, for example, you’d like to use Do Not Disturb mode while you’re asleep, or if at work you cannot use your phone and don’t want to be distracted by it, setting up a Do Not Disturb schedule saves you from manually having to toggle it on and off.

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Do Not Disturb While Driving

Apple’s Do Not Disturb While Driving feature is meant to help you stay focused on the road and not be even inadvertently tempted to use your phone while driving. Like Do Not Disturb, Do Not Disturb While Driving silences notifications and calls but does allow you to ask Siri to read replies to you and will accept incoming calls if your iPhone is connected to CarPlay or a hands-free accessory.

If you haven’t already set up Do Not Disturb While Driving on your iPhone, when your device detects you driving it will ask if you’d like to turn it on. You can also turn on Do Not Disturb While Driving from within Do Not Disturb settings in the Settings app.

Under the Do Not Disturb While Driving header you can choose how you’d like to activate Do Not Disturb While Driving, choosing from four options:

  • Automatically: When iPhone detects you might be driving.
  • When Connected to Car Bluetooth: When your iPhone is connected to a car’s Bluetooth system.
  • Manually: When you turn it on in Control Center.
  • Activate With CarPlay: Automatically when iPhone is connected to CarPlay.

Changes you make to Do Not Disturb mode, like allowing calls from certain people, will also apply to Do Not Disturb While Driving. It’s a very helpful tool we should all be using when we want to avoid distractions.

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