How to Turn Screen Distance On or Off on iPhone or iPad


The screen distance feature for iPhone and iPad devices with FaceID is designed to reduce general eye strain for all users, and to reduce the risk of myopia in children. When enabled, screen distance hides your screen content if it detects your device is within 12 inches of your face, and forces you to move the device away to see the contents of the screen again.

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Steps to Turn Screen Distance On or Off on iPhone or iPad

  1. Open the Settings app on your iPhone or iPad. You’ll land on the settings menu.
  2. Scroll down this menu, and then tap “Screen Time.” Screen Time options are displayed.

  1. Tap “Screen Distance.” The Screen Distance screen is shown.

  1. Tap to toggle on “Screen Distance” if you want to leverage the feature to reduce eye strain.

Alternatively, you can disable the Screen Distance feature by toggling it off if you find it to be more of a hassle than it’s worth.

Reasons to Turn Screen Distance On or Off on iPhone or iPad

1. Battery Consumption

When the features on a phone or tablet, like screen distance detection, are continuously active, they can drain the iPhone or iPad battery faster. Users often prioritize battery life, as longer-lasting batteries mean less frequent charging and extended phone usability throughout the day. By turning off this screen distance feature, users hope to optimize battery performance, ensuring their phones last longer during daily tasks. Battery longevity is crucial, especially for those without frequent access to charging or during traveling when charging sources are limited.

2. Privacy Concerns

Modern technology often walks a fine line between innovation and user privacy. While screen distance features might seem harmless, some individuals are wary of any form of user tracking or behavior measurement. They might feel that such features invade personal spaces or collect unnecessary data about their habits. Turning off the screen distance feature on an iPhone or iPad becomes a proactive step in preserving their sense of privacy.

3. Erroneous Behavior

Technology isn’t perfect. Sometimes, features like screen distance detection might malfunction, leading to incorrect actions or screen changes. These unexpected behaviors can frustrate users, making their phone or tablet experience less enjoyable. If the iPhone or iPad continuously misinterprets distances or prompts undesired changes, users might find it more convenient to deactivate the feature altogether. A stable and predictable phone or tablet experience often trumps advanced features that don’t function optimally.

4. Distraction or Annoyance

Continuous notifications or screen adjustments related to distance can be intrusive. When engaged in tasks, users seek a seamless experience without frequent interruptions. Adjustments based on erroneous distance readings might not only disrupt a user’s focus but could also reduce overall productivity. For some, the best solution is to switch off the screen distance feature on iPhone or iPad, ensuring that their workflow or leisure time remains uninterrupted.

About Max

Max has nearly 20 years of experience working in IT across three different industries in project management and management capacities: publishing, telecommunications and healthcare. He holds the following degrees and certifications: BS Communications, MA Communications, MBA and Project Management Professional (PMP). His tutorial-focused YouTube channel earned more than 100,000 subscribers in its first four years, and currently has more than 160,000 subscribers, 110,000,000 video views and an insane 2.4 million hours of watch time. Max enjoys learning new technology, reading and collecting comic books, listening to audiobooks and playing video games.

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