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Tuesday, 29 September 2015

How to use Android Lollipop’s notification and interruption?

How to use Android Lollipop’s notification and interruption?

A complete guide on mastering Android Lollipop's notification and interruption

I. What is the new Android Lollipop’s notification and interruption system?

One of the biggest changes in Android Lollipop is the notification system. To certain extent, the Android Lollipop’s notification is totally new. It is fundamentally different from the notification system in previous Android devices.
Android Lollipop’s notification and interruption system treats all notifications and alert as interruptions. You can control when and how you receive notifications and alerts so that  you will get interrupted only when you want to be.
The major new features in Android Lollipop’s notification and interruption system includes:
  • Choose from 3 modes: all, none and priority.
  • View and respond to messages directly from your lock screen.
  • Hide sensitive content in notifications.
  • Prioritize notifications from apps.
  • Rank notifications based on who they’re from and the type of communication.
  • Stop interruption of incoming calls.
  • Setup and use downtime.
  • Hide sensitive notifications from lock screen.
  • and more…

II. What’s the meaning of the three modes in Android Lollipop’s notification and interruption?

When pressing the volume button (volume up or down), you can quickly switch among the 3 modes in Android Lollipop’s notification and interruption system.

Mode 1: All mode

In All mode, as suggested by the name, you turn on all notification and alerts in your device.  In other words, you will get notifications and alerts  from the system and all apps except those that you turned off notifications explicitly.
There are a few settings will overwrite the All mode in Android Lollipop’s notification. One is individual app notification setting. If you set notification from certain apps as Blockyou will not net get notifications or interruptions from these apps in All  mode.
Downtime settings will also overwrite this All mode.
In All Mode, you can lower the volume all the way down to vibrate mode. This essentially silence your Android Lollipop device as in old Android versions.
In Android Lollipop, there is no separate vibrate mode. You just lower the volume down to silence the device.  In this vibrate mode, you will still get notifications and alerts without notifications tones.

Mode 2: None mode

None mode is the other extreme. In this mode, all notifications tones will be turned off, including the Alarm and the ringer.
Please note, none mode stops audio interruptions only. In other words, text notifications and notification icons will still shown on the screen. For example, when a SMS message arrives, it will notify you on the screen.
If you want to turn off all notifications, you need use downtime feature.
When None mode is activated, you will see a special icon in the stats bar as shown below.

Mode 3: Priority mode

Priority mode allows certain notifications to interrupt you. You assign which app is in your priority list so that it may interrupt you in the Priority mode.
Similar to that  in All mode, you can also lower the volume to vibrate mode. But vibrate mode under Priority mode still obeys the priority rules. In other words, apps that are not in your priority list can NOT vibrate the phone.
If Priority mode is activated, the stats bar will show a star icon as shown below.

III. How to setup and change the 3 notification modes in Android Lollipop’s notification and interruptions?

There are at least two ways to setup or change the  3 notifications modes in Android Lollipop’s notification and interruption system.

Method 1: Tap volume button.

Once you tap the volume button (it doesn’t matter it is volume up or volume down), in addition to  normal volume level settings on the top as shown below, you get the options  to switch among the 3 notification modes: None, Priority and All.
This is the quickest way to switch the notification modes in Android Lollipop’s notification and interruptions.
If you tap any of the notification modes, you  will also be offered the option to set the duration for this change as (as shown below):
  • Indefinitely. The notification will stick in this mode until you manually change it again.
  • A few hours.  After this period, the notification will change back to current mode automatically.  For example, you have a meeting and you want to change the notification to None for next 2 hours. After 2 hours, the notification and interruption mode will revert back automatically.
As shown in the screenshot below, you can adjust the duration by tapping he + or – button accordingly.

Method 2: Go to Settings–Sound and Notification –Interruptions.

You can access  Settings either from quick settings panel or from the Settings app in the app drawer.
In the Interruptions page, as shown below, you can tap “When calls and notification arrive” to select the notification and interruption modes quickly.
  • Always interrupt means All mode.
  • Allow only priority interruptions means Priority mode.
  • Don’t interrupt means None mode.
how_to_set_notification_and_interruptions_in_android_lollipop_3_settings_interruptions how_to_set_notification_and_interruptions_in_android_lollipop_4_choosing _notification_mode

IV. How to set up downtime in Android Lollipop’s notification and interruption?

Downtime is another useful feature in the new Android Lollipop’s notification and interruption system. It turn on Priority mode automatically in the specific time automatically, and repeatedly.
Some Lollipop users like to compare Downtime with Do Not Disturb in iPhones. They are similar. But Downtime is more powerful as  you can fine tune Priority interruptions.
The Downtime can save you a lot of time by avoiding to turn on/off Priority mode  again and again. For example,  you can specify your sleeping time or school time as Downtime so that only notifications from certain apps, or calls from certain contacts can distract you during this period. After this period, the notification mode will revert back to the one before downtime. It is not necessary for you to change it manually.
You can access Downtime settings to configure it from SettingsSound and Notification —Interruptions.
As shown in the screenshots below, you can set the days and time to enable Downtime automatically based on your scedule.
how_to_set_notification_and_interruptions_in_android_lollipop_5_downtime how_to_set_notification_and_interruptions_in_android_lollipop_6_downtime_time_setting

V. How to configure the priority mode in Android Lollipop’s notification and interruption?

It is very easy to  configure Priority mode in Lollipop. You only need configure:
  • Do you allow events or reminders? These interruptions are from your calendar or Google Keep.
  • Who can call you? Nobody or specific callers?
  • Who can message you? Nobody or specific callers?
  • Which apps can send notifications in Priority mode? You need set it in App notifications (see below)
When you enable calls and messages in Priority mode, you can allow calls or messages from certain people. You have 3 options (as shown below):
  • Anyone.
  • Contacts only. Only people matching contact info in your Contacts app can interrupt you.
  • Starred contacts only. Only contacts which you starred in your Contacts app can interrupt you.
how_to_set_notification_and_interruptions_in_android_lollipop_7_priority_interruptions how_to_set_notification_and_interruptions_in_android_lollipop_8_unblock_some_contacts

VI. How to set App notifications for Android Lollipop’s notification and interruption?

Android Lollipop’s notification and interruption system also allows you to customize the notification of individual apps. In old versions, you only have the option to turn app notification on or off. The Lollipop’s notification system allows fine control on notifications from all apps, including pre-installed apps.
To configure app notifications, you can go to SettingsSound  & notificationApp notifications as shown below.
Select the app as shown below. For example, we use Motorola Assist as an example.
how_to_set_notification_and_interruptions_in_android_lollipop_9_settings_app_notifications how_to_set_notification_and_interruptions_in_android_lollipop_10_select_app
After tapping  Assist, you will get the app notification page for this app.
You can choose
  1. Block. You essentially disable the notifications from this app. The app will not send any notifications forever. In other words, notifications through this app are automatically blocked.  This setting has identical effects of those of turning off notifications inSettings —Apps. Actually, once you choose Blocked in app notification page here, you will find the show notifications in App info page in SettingsApps will be turned off automatically.
  2. Priority. You will get notification from this app in both All mode and Priority mode. Notifications from this app can go through even you are in the Priority mode (and of course, during downtime.
These two options are mutually exclusive. Once you enable one (drag the switch to right to enable it), the other one will be disabled automatically.
If you set screen locks to PIN, pattern or anything except swipe or none, you have another option to declare notifications from this app as sensitive as shown below.
Sensitive notifications will be hidden from the lock screen.
how_to_set_notification_and_interruptions_in_android_lollipop_11_app_notification_block_priority how_to_set_notification_and_interruptions_in_android_lollipop_12_sensitive_notification

Can you use Android Lollipop’s notification and interruption now?

If you have any questions on using Android Lollipop’s notification and interruption or encounter any problems with the notifications in your Android Lollipop, please let us know them in the comment box below.
The community will help you.
For more Android Lollipop guides, please visit on Android Lollipop Guide page.

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