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YouTube now tells you how much time you’re wasting on YouTube

YouTube has begun informing Android and iOS app users how long they’re spending watching videos, as part of Google’s Digital Wellbeing drive.

The company is adding a ‘Time watched’ stats menu to its mobile apps, in order to give users a better idea of their daily and weekly activity. Google says the tool is designed to provide users with a “better understanding of how much you watch.”

The feature is available within the account menu and shows Today, Yesterday, Past 7 Days and a Daily Average.

Time watched also sits alongside the optional “Remind me to take a break” toggle switch, which is another of the Digital Wellbeing initiatives announced at Google I/O in May 2018. Once enabled, users will receive a notification after a specified uninterrupted viewing session, the length of which can be customised in the settings.

Back panel view of a Google Pixel 4 XL held in hand facing back

Another tool designed to help users limit their screentime is the option to bundle notifications for subscribed content into one alert per day. This option is now centralised alongside the time watched feature, for easier access.

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In a blog post Google writes: “If you want more control over when you receive notifications from YouTube, you can bundle all of your YouTube push notifications into a single notification each day and set a specific time to receive your digest. Just go to your settings to choose when you’d like to receive your digest, and from then on you’ll only receive one notification per day.”

Speaking of notifications, Google is attempting reduce the negative impact upon sleep. Between 10pm and 8am, the company is now sending all notifications without sound and vibration. Night owl users will be able to adjust this within the settings menu.

Brian Marquardt, YouTube’s Director of Product Management, added: “We’re dedicated to making sure that you have the information you need to better understand how you use YouTube and develop your own sense of digital wellbeing. We hope these tips are a good start.”

Do you spend too much time on YouTube? Do these tools help you to be more conscious of the hours whiled away watching clip after clip? Drop us a line @TrustedReviews on Twitter.

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