Avoid embarrassing moments! Hide your phone’s lock screen notifications

Jul 9, 2021, 4:00 PM
(Public Domain Photo)...
(Public Domain Photo)
(Public Domain Photo)

It’s happened to me. You’re showing a friend or coworker something on your phone when a text or other notification pops up that you wish they didn’t see.

On Android, there’s the super handy Guest Mode. With this enabled, you can hand your phone over with confidence no one will be able to swipe through your texts, contacts, or photos. Tap or click for steps to turn that on before you need it here.

I’m shocked Apple hasn’t added that capability to iOS. You can do a lot to lock down your smartphone, whether you use an iPhone or an Android. Tap or click here for five essential settings you can’t afford to skip.

Now, let’s turn to those pesky notifications. To keep them off your phone while you’re sleeping or at work, or maybe for when you’re around certain people, follow the steps below.

The temporary option

When you want to create some distance between you and your phone, switch on Do Not Disturb mode. This option stops all forms of notifications: sound, vibration, or lighting up the screen. Note that this will stop notifications for phone calls, too.

If you’re on an iPhone, swipe down from the top right of your screen to access the Control Center. Tap the moon icon to enable Do Not Disturb mode. You can also go to Settings > Do Not Disturb to fine-tune this feature. You can set up a schedule or exclude specific contacts.

On Android phones, swipe down from the top of the screen to access your notification shade and tap the Do Not Disturb icon. Go to Settings > Sound > Do Not Disturb to set exceptions and more.

The more permanent option

If you prefer to hide app notifications only and keep it that way, it’s easy to do in your phone’s settings.

On iPhone all apps:

● Open Settings > Notifications

● Tap Show Previews

● Choose an option: Always, When Unlocked, or Never

If you want to stop notifications on your phone’s lock screen, select When Unlocked. This will keep notifications coming when you’re using your phone but prevent them from popping up on the lock screen.

To turn off notifications for only specific apps, go to Settings > Notifications > Siri Suggestions, then turn off any app.

If you have an Android phone, you have five notification options: show no notifications, show all, hide silent notifications, or hide sensitive content specifically. You can also choose to shut off notifications for individual apps.

Shut off all notifications on Android:

● Open Settings > Apps & notifications

● Select Notifications

● Under Notifications on lock screen, select Don’t show notifications

Hide sensitive content from notifications:

● Open Settings > Apps & notifications

● Select Notifications

● Under Lock screen, turn off Sensitive notifications

Keep in mind that the definition of sensitive content depends on your device but should include things like text messages.

Turn off notifications for specific apps on Android:

● Open Settings > Apps & notifications

● Select Notifications

● Find Recently sent and choose apps where you have recently sent notifications

● If you don’t see the app you want, select See all

● Tap Advanced > Turn off all notifications for a listed app

With just a few taps, you can get your phone’s notifications under control. Keep in mind, if you set up permissions on a per-app basis, you need to deal with anything new you download as it comes in. Tap or click for a quick shortcut everyone should know.

What digital lifestyle questions do you have? Call Kim’s national radio show and tap or click here to find it on your local radio station. You can listen to or watch The Kim Komando Show on your phone, tablet, television or computer. Or tap or click here for Kim’s free podcasts.

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Avoid embarrassing moments! Hide your phone’s lock screen notifications