Notes on Notifications ➝

Nick Heer, writing on Pixel Envy:

It is a hard problem: phones have a fixed display space, and notifications have to be somehow informative yet unobtrusive. And, yes, an Apple Watch helps bear the burden of rapidly-accumulating notifications. But I think iOS should to do better on its own. I don’t know for certain what radically-improved notifications look like, and I don’t think that it’s any sort of AI-backed magic algorithm sorting your notifications for you. Maybe it is, in part, taking a cue from the Apple Watch: a very small initial notification and expanding the notification only if you linger on it, something which can be accomplished on the iPhone by tracking eye movement with the TrueDepth camera.

I don’t find notifications on iOS to be nearly as annoying as others do. But I’ve taken the time to craft my devices’ settings to my liking. When I install a new app, I almost always choose to block the app from sending notifications and I’ve made adjustments to exactly how certain apps can notify me — turning off badges, sounds, or the notification’s ability to show in history.

There’s obviously room for improvement here. And I agree with Nick, users shouldn’t have to adjust their settings to prevent notification annoyances. Apple needs to do something to fix this.