Use Focus on your iPhone or iPad

With iOS 15 and iPadOS 15 or later, Focus lets you stay in the moment when you need to concentrate or step away from your device. You can customize Focus settings and choose when you want to receive alerts and notifications, while letting other people and apps know when you’re busy.

iPhone screen showing Focus screen 

Turn on Focus

  1. Go to Settings > Focus. 
  2. Tap a provided Focus option—like Do Not Disturb, Personal, Sleep, or Work—then tap Customize Focus.
  3. Set up your Focus. You can select allowed or silenced notifications from people and apps, connect your Lock Screen or Home Screen, have this Focus turn on automatically, and add Focus filters.

You can also enable Time Sensitive notifications from apps, which allows apps not in your allowed list to send notifications marked as Time Sensitive.

You can also turn on Focus from Control Center. Just open Control Center on your iPhone, or on your iPad, touch and hold Focus, then select the Focus you want to turn on.

When you set a Focus, the icon appears in the status bar and on your Lock Screen, and your status is automatically displayed in the Messages app. When people try to send you a message, they'll see that you've silenced notifications, but they can still notify you if it's urgent.

When you use Focus on one device, the setting is automatically applied across your Apple devices that are signed in with the same Apple ID.

 

Set up a custom Focus

If you want to concentrate on an activity that's different from any of the provided Focus options, you can create a Custom Focus.

iPhone screen showing how to create a custom Focus. 

  1. Go to Settings > Focus. 
  2. Tap the Add button , then tap Custom or browse additional options.
  3. Enter a name for your Focus.

  4. Choose a color and an icon to represent your Focus, then tap Next.

  5. Customize the options for your Focus.

Share your Focus status

When you set up a Focus, turn on Share Focus Status so that apps display that you have notifications silenced when people message you. Since apps only know that you have notifications silenced but not which Focus you have turned on, the name is never shared. Focus status is shared in apps when you have a Focus turned on and after you give an app permission. 

To turn Focus status on: 

  1. Go to Settings > Focus. 
  2. Tap Focus Status.
  3. Turn on Share Focus Status.
  4. Select which Focus options can share that you have notifications silenced.

Connect Home Screen pages to Focus

After you set up Focus, you can silence notifications or allow only notifications from the people and apps that match your Focus. You can also customize a Home Screen page that has only apps related to your Focus and make that page the only one accessible during the time you have the Focus enabled.

iPhone screen showing the settings for Do Not Disturb Focus. 

  1. Go to Settings > Focus.
  2. Select the Focus that you want to customize, then choose the Home Screen.
  3. Create a new Home Screen page, select an existing Home Screen page, or select multiple pages that you want to connect to this Focus.
  4. Tap Done.

From here, you can also tap Options and turn on Hide Notification Badges, which hides notifications on your Home Screen apps.

Connect your Lock Screen to Focus

  1. Go to Settings > Focus.
  2. Select the Focus that you want to customize, then choose the Lock Screen.
  3. Create a new Lock Screen, select an existing Lock Screen, or select multiple Lock Screens that you want to connect to this Focus.
  4. Tap Done.

Add a schedule or automation

You can schedule a Focus to activate at certain times, when you're at a particular location, or when you open specific apps.

iPhone screen show New Automation settings for Focus 

To set a schedule based on certain times, locations, or apps: 

  1. Go to Settings > Focus, then tap the Focus that you want to schedule.
  2. Under Turn on Automatically, tap Add Schedule or Automation.*
  3. Choose when you want the automation to happen, then follow the onscreen steps.

To use Smart Activation, which will automatically apply your Focus at relevant times throughout the day:

  1. Go to Settings > Focus, then tap the Focus that you want to activate automatically.
  2. Tap Smart Activation.
  3. Turn on Smart Activation.

When you turn on Smart Activation, it automatically turns on the Focus at relevant times throughout the day based on location, time, or app usage.

* Depending on the type of Focus you're using, the steps might vary. For example, you might see Add Schedule or Automation or just Automation.

Add Focus filters

When you set up a Focus, you can add app filters that determine what information apps will show when the Focus is on. For example, you can show your work calendar only while your Work Focus is on.

iPhone screen showing Focus filters settings where you can add app or system filters. 

  1. Go to Settings > Focus, then tap the Focus you want to add filters to.
  2. Scroll down to Focus Filters, then tap Add Filter.
  3. Tap an app, then select the information you want to see from that app while the Focus on.
  4. Tap Add.

You can also use system filters to turn on system settings, like Dark Mode and Low Power Mode, when a Focus is on.

Allow Time Sensitive notifications

When you first set up a Focus, you can turn on Time Sensitive Notifications to allow people and apps to notify you immediately, even when you have a Focus turned on.

  1. Go to Settings > Focus.
  2. Select the Focus, then tap Apps under Allowed Notifications.
  3. Turn on Time Sensitive Notifications.

iPhone screen showing how to enable Emergency Bypass 

You can also allow certain contacts to reach you in the event of an emergency, even when you have a Focus set up.

  1. Open Contacts and select a contact.
  2. Tap Edit, tap Ringtone or Text Tone, then turn on Emergency Bypass.
  3. Tap Done.

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