Tuesday, June 06, 2017
Alert! New! Update! Notification overload!
What is it with notifications? Every phone, every application, every smartwatch, tablet, every web site, every desktop OS... THEY ALL WANT TO KEEP BOMBARDING ME WITH NOTIFICATIONS!
Noisy, intrusive things. Beeping, flashing, distracting. Even in the middle of the night, waking me up.
I spend most of my days turning them off in every app, every OS, for every site, on every device. It's a game of whack-a-mole, trying to find the relevant Settings pane, switching notifications off for everything and hoping that an app update doesn't reset things to 'on' again.
But why should this be the case? Why not, for once, have an application default to not popping up notifications? Shouldn't this be something that the user turns on? By all means show me a tooltip or similar when I first start the app, reminding me that the notification system exists, but thereafter it should be up to me to turn on something noisy and distracting, surely?
24 hours a day, the only thing I want me phone or watch or laptop telling me is the arrival of an SMS (and even then, half of these are spam) or perhaps a Twitter DM. Everything else, repeat everything else should be silent.
Looking at the average teenager's phone these days (they leave everything on, it seems), notifications from something or other (including, social, games, etc.) come in every minute of the day. I know, I've watched them 'bing' and 'bloop' their way onto screens.
Every minute? Me, I'd rather know peace and quiet and enjoy the real world, turning to my tech at my convenience, not at that of some Internet notifications server.