Did you know that Apple wants you to get a better night of sleep?
If you have a habit of reading your phone at night before bed (and who doesn’t?), you may not be getting the best sleep you possibly can. Why? Apparently the light emitted from your phone can actually disrupt your sleep patterns. More specifically, the blue spectrum coming from your iPhone or iPad has been shown (see here and here) to knock your circadian rhythmn out of whack and disrupt your sleep patterns by keeping you awake when you should be falling asleep. Over time, these consistently poor sleep patterns can have a negative effect on your health.
There are two ways to solve this problem. First, you could put the phone down hours before bed and not worry about it, OR, second, you can use the nifty new feature Apple has introduced in iOS release 9.3. They’re calling this new feature “Night Shift“*. Using this new option, you can reduce the level of blue light emitted from your phone all the time or during scheduled times of the day. The resulting “warmer” light is supposed to help keep your circadian rhythm intact and give you a better night of rest.
Here’s how to access this feature.
(1) On your iPhone or iPad, open the “Settings” application. This is the icon with gears on it.
(2) Within “Settings”, look for the “Display & Brightness” option and select it with a tap.
(3) In that next screen, look for the “Night Shift” option in the list of available selections and choose it.
(4) From there, you have two choices. You can choose to turn “Night Shift” on or off manually by toggling the switch found to the right of the “Manual” option OR
(5) You can toggle the switch next to the “Scheduled” label and pick the start and end times for the feature to be automatically turned on and off each day. Choose a start time (“From”) that precedes the time you normally go to bed by at least an hour and then choose an end time (“To”) that coincides with the time when you normally wake.
(6) You can also optionally adjust the “Color Temperature” (Cooler = more blue light; Warmer = less blue light) by moving the “Color Temperature” slider to the left or right to suit your preference.
If you want to skip going into the “Settings” application to turn on “Night Shift”, you can also toggle it in the “Control Center” that is accessible when you swipe up from the bottom of any screen. See images below. The Night Shift icon is the one that looks like an eye.
That’s it! You’re now an experienced “Night Shift” user in iOS 9.3. May your slumber be peaceful and uninterrupted by that nasty blue light.
* I find this name a little odd. Are you supposed to sleep if you’re working the night shift? I would think keeping awake would be the goal. Anyway, I digress…