Maintaining a positive relationship with technology in today’s fast-paced digital environment, where screens have become part of everyday life, is vitally important. Hence, screen time on Mac provides invaluable insight into your computer usage pattern by tracking how long is spent using various applications. Additionally, it shows detailed reports about those applications that consume your time the most.
Here, in this guide, we will discuss how to check screen time on macOS and how to use the screen time feature on macOS. However, Screen Time features are added to the macOS Catalina. If you are using an older version of macOS, update it to the latest version. After that, you are ready to use screen time features.
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What is Screen Time?
Screen Time is a feature built into macOS that provides detailed insight into your device usage, including how much time is spent browsing websites, which apps you frequently access and any limitations or downtime settings that are set.
Additionally, it helps ensure a healthy balance between online life and offline activities. Let’s explore all the features of Screen Time and how to use it.
How to Turn On Screen Time on a Mac
Before using the Screen Time feature on your Mac, you have to enable it. You can effortlessly toggle Screen Time on and off on your Mac.
For that, follow the steps provided below to turn on Screen Time on a Mac:
1. On your Mac, click the Apple logo and select System Settings from the Menu.
2. In the System Settings window, locate and click the Screen Time option in the left pane.
3. You can turn on the Screen Time from the top left button.
How to Share Screen Time Across Devices
Sharing Screen Time across all of your devices enables you to obtain a more accurate estimate of the amount of time you spend online. Furthermore, to share Screen Time across devices on macOS, follow these steps:
1. On your Mac, open System Settings > Screen Time in the sidebar.
2. Turn on the Share Across Devices options on the right. This option is available only when you’re signed in with Apple ID.
Once you turn on Share across devices, Screen Time reports will collect overall time spent on other devices that are signed in with the same Apple ID. Plus, this can be useful for tracking your complete screen time or for monitoring your child’s screen time across all of their devices.
Note: All of your devices must be signed up into iCloud with the same Apple ID for Screen Time to be shared across devices.
How to Set Up a Screen Time Passcode
If you’re using Screen Time for yourself, you can turn on the use screen time passcode. This will help youto secure your Screen Time settings. Also, require a passcode to enable additional time when limits expire.
To set up Screen Time Passcode, follow these steps:
1. Open the System Settings.
2. Then click on the Screen Time option, and click on Use Screen Time Passcode on the right to turn it on.
3. If you set Screen Time Password while logged in on an administrator account, you will get a prompt recommending that your account be converted into a standard one. Here, click on the Continue button.
4. After that, enter a four-digit passcode, then enter the passcode again to verify it.
5. Fill out your Apple ID and password so you can later reset the Screen Time Passcode using your Apple ID in case you forget your passcode.
How to Check Screen Time on macOS
Screen Time allows you to track how much time you spend on your Mac and which apps you use the most. Also, follow these step-by-step instructions to check your Screen Time on your Mac:
1. Open the System Settings.
2. Click on the Screen Time option and select the App Usage option.
3. You will see an overview of your daily screen time usage, including the total time spent and app usage.
Screen Time is a beneficial tool for managing your time on your Mac. By understanding how much time you spend on different apps and websites, you can make changes to your habits and improve your productivity.
How to View Notification Sent in Screen Time
If you set up Screen Time on your Mac to help you focus, then reviewing the number of app notifications you’ve been getting goes right along with keeping your eyes on your work.
1. On your Mac, go to System Settings > Screen Time, and click Notifications from the right sidebar.
2. By default, the app notifications for your device will appear on the current day. Here, you will find the number of notifications you received on that day.
3. To view the notifications by week, use the drop-down switch at the top. You can also alternate weekdays using the bar chart in the Notifications section.
How to Check Pickups in Screen Time
The Pickups tab provides information about the number of times you’ve checked your device and the first app you opened, offering valuable insights into your Mac usage.
To check Pickups in Screen Time, follow these steps:
1. Navigate to System Settings and choose Screen Time from the left menu.
2. On the right, click Pickups option.
3. You can see the overview of the Pickups Statistics.
4. To display statistics for a previous week, use the left arrow icon to select a date from the previous week, then select the week from the Date pop-up menu.
A chart will show you the number of times you picked up your device and the first app you used after picking it up. You can use this information to identify apps you use too often or distract you. You can then change your device usage habits or use Screen Time controls to limit your time on those apps.
How to Setup Downtime Using Screen Time
Downtime is an integral component of Screen Time, and it refers to the period during which you use your Mac the least or not at all. Here’s how you can set downtime usage on your Mac:
1. Head over to System Settings and then Screen Time.
2. Click on Downtime to turn on.
3. Here, you’ll see that Downtime is Off. Click on the toggle switch to start taking advantage of this feature.
4. After turning this on, you will be able to modify the schedule. As shown below, you can set a daily schedule by selecting the Everyday option.
5. If you want to set multiple times or disable downtime on specific days of the week, you can select “Custom” and make the necessary adjustments.
With Screen Time, you can set a plan for when you won’t use your Mac. When you set Downtime on a Mac, you get a warning five minutes before it starts. You won’t be able to use apps that aren’t on the allowlist once it starts. FaceTime and Messages, for example, are allowed by default. You can add or remove apps from this filter, though, to make sure they are always available.
How to Allow Apps and Contact During Downtime
During Downtime, your Mac only allows you to use apps that you choose. This is because Downtime is a time when you’re not looking at your screen. By default, macOS puts important apps like FaceTime, Maps, and Messages in the Always Allowed list. Also, you can change the apps in this list, though.
So, do you want to know how to change the list of apps that Downtime for Mac always lets through? Continue reading!
Here’s how you can allow apps during downtime:
1. Open System Settings on your Mac.
2. Here, choose Screen Time to proceed further.
3. Then, click Always Allowed in the left pane.
4. Now, just scroll through the list and turn on the toggle switch next to the apps you wish to add to the Always Allowed list. You can also quickly find apps that are already on your system by using the search box.
5. Additionally, to remove apps like FaceTime, Messages, etc. from this list, you can also turn off their toggling switches.
6. Now, to allow contacts during downtime on your Mac, choose the option under Allow communication with.
How to Limit App Usage in Screen Time on Mac
App Limits, like Screen Time, take into account how you use all of your iOS devices. Furthermore, you can also set it up with a family account to keep an eye on how your kids use their devices and set the right App Limits from afar.
1. Go to Settings > Screen Time and then click App Limits to access it.
2. If App Limits is turned off, click on the toggle switch to turn it on, then click Add Limit.
3. In the Add Limit window, select the apps or app categories that you want to limit. You can also choose to limit specific Websites by clicking on the Websites tab and entering the website addresses.
4. After that, set the amount of time that you want to follow for the limit. You can set a cap for each day, each week, or both.
5. Once you are completed, click on Done to Add Limit.
6. To edit or remove a limit, click on the Edit or Remove button next to the limit.
You can use Screen Time to limit the usage of any app or app category on your Mac. Therefore, this can be a helpful way to manage your time and reduce distractions.
How to Set Contact and Privacy in Screen Time
You can block or limit selected apps and features on your child’s device with Screen Time’s Content & Privacy Restrictions. Hence, you need to follow the below-mentioned set of steps to do the same.
1. Go to System Settings, then Screen Time.
2. Turn on Content & Privacy restrictions if it’s not on already by turning the toggle ON.
3. Now, make changes to content, store, app, and preference restrictions from the same menu.
It’s simple to check your screen time on macOS, which might give you useful information about your usage patterns. Also, you can take charge of your gadget usage, set boundaries, and create a healthier balance between your online and offline activities by watching how much time you spend in front of the screen. Make smart choices about using your Mac with this feature to enhance your digital well-being.
Furthermore, we hope you have enjoyed reading this blog and found it helpful. However, if you have any doubts or suggestions, please leave them in the comments section.
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