Configure Do Not Disturb on the iPhone with new iOS 12 features

Do Not Disturb is a feature on the iPhone that enables you to silence notifications for those times when you need to focus on work, sleep, drive and so on. Use iOS 12’s new DND features.

The iPhone can be noisy and beeps and chimes announcing the arrival of a message or email, or some event in a game, can disturb your sleep. One solution is to turn off the sound, but then your sleep might still be disturbed with the screen turning on if the phone is on the table beside the bed. However, with Do Not Disturb and Bedtime you can get a good night’s rest.

You might want to enable Do Not Disturb during meetings at work because the noises and screen activity can be distracting both for you and other people at the meeting. DNF enables you to have a distraction-free meeting.

There are more scenarios and these days cinemas tell you to turn off your phone during the movie. Instead of doing that, you could enable DND mode. Driving a car is another occasion when you don’t want to be disturbed by your phone because it could be dangerous. People have had accidents while texting and driving.

Do Not Disturb settings on the iPhone

Schedule Do Not Disturb in iOS

  1. Go to Settings
  2. Press Do Not Disturb
  3. Turn on Scheduled
  4. Press the To and From times to choose when Do Not Disturb automatically turns on
  5. If this scheduled time is your normal sleep hours, turn on Bedtime

You could schedule DND to activate during the night when you are asleep and for this the Bedtime switch should be on. Some people may want to schedule DND during the day. For instance, if you are working and don’t want to take personal calls on your iPhone, DND could be enabled from 9 AM to 5 PM, or whatever your work hours are.

Let family bypass Do Not Disturb

  1. Go to Settings
  2. Press Do Not Disturb
  3. Under the Phone section, tap Allow Calls From
  4. Select Everyone, No One, Favourites, All Contacts or Family

Family is a good one to choose and it means that you can still receive phone calls from your partner, children, parents and so on, even in the middle of the night if necessary. You won’t get calls from your boss at work though. However, if you want to allow your boss or anyone else for that matter, select Favourites.

How to add people as phone favourites

  1. On the home screen, press the Phone icon
  2. Press Contacts
  3. Select a contact
  4. Press Add to Favourites

Do Not Disturb while driving

  1. Go to Settings
  2. Press Do Not Disturb
  3. Tap Activate under Do Not Disturb While Driving
  4. Choose Automatically, Manually, or When Connected to Car Bluetooth

Which option is best? The Bluetooth option because it activates DND automatically. If your car does not have a Bluetooth connection, select Manually and remember to enable it

The problem with choosing the Automatically option is that the iPhone may not be able to tell whether you are in the driving seat of your car or the passenger seat of someone else’s, or even travelling on a bus. It might automatically enable DND because rapid movement has been detected.

There are more settings for driving with your iPhone a little further down the DND settings. You don’t need them if you have a hands-free system in your car and can receive calls without taking your hands off the steering wheel or your eyes off the road.

If you cannot or don’t want to take calls while driving, and you really shouldn’t, press Auto-Reply To and select one of the options, such as No One, Favourites, All Contacts and so on. An automatic text message reply is sent to anyone that calls you while DND while driving is active. If you choose to Auto-Reply, press it and tap the text message to edit it.

Enable DND until you leave a location

Suppose you are at work, watching a movie at the cinema, or some other place and enabled Do Not Disturb. Wouldn’t it be useful if DND could be automatically disabled to return to normal mode when you leave work, the cinema or wherever you currently are?

You can. Open the Control Center (swipe up from the bottom or down from the top, it varies with the iOS device), and press and hold on the Do Not Disturb button – the moon icon. Use the force touch method if you have it.

Do Not Disturb in Control Center on the iPhone

A list of options appears that enables DND for one hour, until tomorrow or until you leave this location.

What is Bedtime on the iPhone?

Bedtime is a new type of Do Not Disturb function in iOS 12 that is specifically aimed at helping you get a good night’s sleep by turning off or limiting the screen, calls, and notifications.

There is a Bedtime switch in Do Not Disturb and a Do Not Disturb switch in Bedtime. They can be independently turned on or off, which I think makes the feature a bit confusing.

Do Not Disturb: Focuses on silencing your phone by preventing calls and notifications from making sounds.

Bedtime: Dims the Lock screen and stops notifications from lighting it up. Notifications are sent to the Notification Center and not the screen.

Bedtime plus DND is a sort of super DND that is aimed at night time use, whereas ordinary DND can be used during the day, such as driving a car, business meetings and so on.

Bedtime can be turned on in Do Not Disturb settings if your scheduled DND corresponds with your sleep hours. However, this can also be configured in the Clock app and there is a tab at the bottom of the screen to select Bedtime.

Bedtime has an option to remind you to go to bed and some people may find this useful. I keep falling asleep in front of the TV and don’t need to be reminded. It can also wake you up with an alarm in the morning and this is obviously more useful.

Configure the Bedtime feature in iOS 12

Set Bedtime hours on the iPhone

  1. Open the Clock app
  2. Press the Bedtime button at the bottom
  3. Turn on the Bedtime switch
  4. Drag the bar around the clock face to set when Bedtime is to start and end

Have a lie in at weekends

  1. Open the Clock app
  2. Press the Bedtime button at the bottom
  3. Turn on the Bedtime switch
  4. Press the Options button
  5. Tap the days of the week to light up the ones Bedtime is active

Remind yourself to go to bed

  1. Open the Clock app
  2. Press the Bedtime button at the bottom
  3. Turn on the Bedtime switch
  4. Press the Options button
  5. Press Bedtime Reminder
  6. Choose the number of minutes before bedtime to remind you to go to bed

Set the Bedtime sound to wake up to

  1. Open the Clock app
  2. Press the Bedtime button at the bottom
  3. Turn on the Bedtime switch
  4. Press the Options button
  5. Tap Wake-Up Sound
  6. Press the sounds to hear them and select the one you like best