How to use bedtime mode on Android

There’s nothing worse than getting a random notification or an unwanted call in the middle of the night that wakes you up and makes you panic, right? Well, there is a way to prevent this on Android devices: bedtime mode.

The bedtime mode is essentially what it says it is; A special mode on your smartphone is activated when you go to bed. The feature blocks most incoming calls and notifications, except for calls from favorite contacts, repeat calls, and alarms, and tints the display in black and white to keep you from endlessly scrolling when you really should be getting some much-needed sleep.

The problem is that this functionality is hidden deep within the Settings app of most Android phones and is not enabled by default. The good news is that setting it up is pretty easy once you know how, and that’s where we at Trusted Reviews come in. Here’s how to set up and use bedtime mode on your Android smartphone.

Editor’s Note: For this tutorial, we used the Motorola Razr (2022) with near-stock Android 13. The steps may vary slightly depending on your smartphone’s manufacturer and user interface.

What you need: An Android smartphone running Android 11 or later. The short version. Open the Settings app. Tap Digital Wellbeing and Parental Controls. Tap on “Bedtime Mode”. Turn on your preferred bedtime mode settings. Tap Next. Set your bedtime schedule. Tap Done.

1 Open the Settings app

The first step is to locate and open the Settings app on your smartphone. Although the representation may vary depending on the smartphone used, the icon is usually denoted by a mechanical gear.

2 Tap Digital wellbeing and parental controls

Next, scroll down the Settings menu until you find Digital Wellbeing and Parental Controls – these are usually at the very bottom of the Settings app’s main menu.

3 Tap Bedtime mode

With the Digital Wellbeing and Parental Controls menu, you can get an overview of how often you use your smartphone, which apps you use and more, and set thresholds to maintain your mental wellbeing.

Bedtime is part of this functionality, although it’s not enabled by default. Tap on “Bedtime Mode” to set it up.

4 Turn on your preferred bedtime mode settings

At this point, you can enable or disable the specific Bedtime Mode feature to better suit your needs.

These include auto-enabling Do Not Disturb to block incoming calls and notifications, only allowing alarms, favorite contacts, and repeat callers to break the block, and a grayscale display mode that changes the screen to black and white, to prevent endless scrolling in bed. It’s all our fault, isn’t it?

By default, both options are enabled. So if you want to keep them active, just tap “Next” on the bottom right to move on to the next step.

5 Set your bedtime schedule

The final step is to set up the bedtime mode schedule, essentially telling your phone when to turn the feature on and off. You don’t want the Do Not Disturb feature on all day, do you?

There are two ways to do this. The first is to set a rigid schedule with a fixed start and end time. You can customize this to suit your needs by tapping on the start and end times. Alternatively, you can tap “While charging at bedtime” to enable bedtime mode only when your smartphone is plugged in for a set period of time.

Considering that most of us charge our phones overnight (although this can impact battery life), this might be the more convenient option for many.

When you’re happy with your schedule, just tap Done in the bottom right to save your settings and turn on bedtime mode.

Troubleshooting Why is bedtime mode not working on my smartphone?

Some users (including this author) have noticed that the bedtime mode doesn’t always activate as planned and there doesn’t seem to be any sense or reason for this problem. However, turning bedtime mode on and off in the Settings app seems to bring things back to life.