How to see how much time you’ve spent on an app – Android

Ever heard of doom scrolling? Well, now you have, it happens to all of us in an age where everyone spends so much time on their phone, device or computers because it is so easy to get carried away and sucked in.

Doom scrolling is just one of the negative habits we tend to develop when we spend too much time on our devices. We look for bad news online intentionally and it is becoming even more prevalent with Covid-19, unfortunately, it can affect us in ways we don’t even realise. Sometimes you can also innocently go for a few hours where you have just been scrolling through cat videos and pictures of people you don’t even know it. So if there was a way to check out how much time you spend on any given app, would you use it?

Well, there is a way for you to check your app usage on Android in particular, it is kind of a safety net so you can assess how much time you spend on any app, at any precise time. It also allows you to use a feature where you can also set limits for how long you want to spend on that app day-to-day in the future if you think your procrastinating is getting out of hand.

How to see how much time you spend on an app android

How do I check my app usage on Android?

All Android phones have the feature that allows you to check your app usage on your phone, on Android devices you can use the Digital Wellbeing access to do so. Digital Wellbeing is the equivalent of Apple Screen Time. The first time you launch the app is a little more complicated than launching it after that.

Initially, you have to set up a profile to continue but it is worthwhile in the long run so you can keep on top of your daily usage. To launch the digital Wellbeing app there is a guide below for you to follow:

  1. Go to ‘Settings.’
  2. Find ‘Digital Wellbeing and Parental Controls.’
  3. Here you will see a summary of the usage of your phone apps.
  4. In the Dashboard there is an option that shows information. Here you can set timers to limit how long you want to use the apps.
  5. If you scroll to the very bottom of the Digital Wellbeing page you can flip the switch to show the app in your app drawer, in the future then you won’t have to go through settings to find a specific app every time.

How do I set screen time limits on Android?

Setting screen time limits for yourself as an adult make sense to keep yourself aware of how much time you are spending online. It is also a great feature to limit kids from spending too much time on their phones so you can get them to do something productive with their time.

Screen time should be a treat particularly for kids, rather than the norm because it can help to exacerbate symptoms of mental health issues, leave them open to online bullying and the like. There is a separate part within the app specifically to set parental controls that can be done through Google Link so you can see what your children are doing and limit their access where you find the need to. You can use screen limits as a customisable feature for your phone or device. To set up your screen time limits here is how you do it:

  1. Go to ‘Settings.’
  2. Go to Digital Wellbeing and Parental Controls.’
  3. Tap on the available chart.
  4. Go to ‘Set Timer.’
  5. You can do this for individual apps as you see fit.
  6. You can also set daily allowances for any day of the week within the Digital Wellbeing app, for example, 2 hours on a Monday, 4 hours on a Tuesday so on and so forth.
  7. Choose ‘Set Goal’ to finish your selection.

Focus Mode

Finally, within Digital Wellbeing there is an area called ‘Focus’ this option blocks all the apps on your phone so if you need to work or you just want to switch off from the world, app notifications and other features won’t interrupt your work until the limit is over. It is a great way to disconnect and get some personal time in when needed.


In conclusion, It is super important that we limit our time online and on apps, because they can quite literally suck our time away from us without us realising that it is happening as well as too much time online is detrimental to our mental and physical health. Particularly with children having access to things old people like me never had access to. On Android, you can do this by changing your app permissions.

With Covid-19 and all of the awful things we have endured this year, it might be time to put your phone down and take some downtime for yourself, like we had to in the 90s, because there were no mobiles or devices, so we had no choice. Honestly, once you get into the habit you’ll realise how much you are missing out on in the world by scrolling for such lengthy periods and not looking around you and it can benefit your health no end.

Photo of author

Connect: LinkedIn



An avid gamer, historian and all-round literature buff, Tracy is our go-to when it comes to using different devices. MacOS, iOS, Android, Windows, Linux or whatever else, Tracy's got a device that runs it (she's even got an old Blackberry laying around somewhere!).

Read more from Tracy

Apps UK
International House
12 Constance Street
London, E16 2DQ