ActionDash brings 'digital well being' tracking to more Android phones

Google's Wellbeing app only works on Pixel and Android One devices.

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Chris Lacy
Chris Lacy

Late last year Google released a Digital Wellbeing app that surfaced insights about exactly how much you're using your phone, and in which apps. Apple installed a similar feature in iOS 12 with Screen Time, but on Android, Google's app only works with a few phones running Android P. For everyone else, there's now another option -- ActionDash, a free app from the developer of Action Launcher and Tweet Lanes. It keeps a record of everything from screen time, to which apps were opened and how many notifications were delivered.

Besides working on Android devices running software going back to Lollipop (version 5.0 released in 2014), it also has features that Google's app doesn't support yet. It adds some visualizations to the tracked data, and provides a daily summary of usage so you can see just how addictive Instagram is. While actually using the data to adjust your behavior is a decision you'll have to make on your own, awareness of time spent is an important first step.

Of course, with the level of information it gathers and the specific data being tracked, privacy is an obvious issue. According to developer Chris Lacy, ActionDash never sends it data off of the device to his company or to any third parties, unless the user specifically chooses to upload backups on services like Google Drive, Dropbox or an SD card.

You can install ActionDash for free now from the Play Store, however certain features, like support for backups, a dark theme and "full" usage history costs $7.

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