A while back, after watching Kingsman: The Secret Service, my friends and I went to Moxies for dinner. As soon as we were seated, every single one of us took our phones out and just sat there, not talking to each other, just on our phones. Our table was dead silent. I myself was on twitter, which got boring pretty fast so I put my phone away. When I lifted my head up I noticed that I didn’t have anyone to talk to. So, I did my best to get everyone’s attention and pointed out that we’re all on our phones when we should be talking to each other. I proposed that we put our phones in the middle of the table and the first one to touch their phone pays for everyone’s meal, something I learned from another group of friends. We all agreed to do it and we’ve been doing this ever since.
That was my solution to us being glued to our phones and blocking out the world around us, but a Toronto start-up had a completely different idea to solve this issue. Enter Flipd, an app that locks you out of your phone for a period of time. I’ve been using this app for that exact purpose for about a month now. Whenever I need to get some work done, I just flip off and I’m good to go.
More about Flipd
Flipd essentially enables users to lock their phones for a period of time and once locked, there is no turning back. Even restarting the phone won’t do the trick, as soon as your phone is back up, flipd will lock your phone again.
When you’re flipd off, the app allows you to gain access to your phone for 60 seconds, and you can only do this once! This well make you realize how long 60 seconds actually is and how much you can do in that time frame. Flipd has really helped me stay focus when I’m trying to get things done; I’m actually flipd off right now as I write this.
Flipd puts user friendliness over everything else. The app is simple to use and there is no complicated setup process. As soon as you open Flipd, you’re greeted with three buttons, “Flip Off”, “Auto Response” and “Flip Off Others”.
Tapping the first button will pop open a window for you to select how long you want to be Flipd off. When you pick your time, and hit go, there is no turning back so you need to be completely committed to the time. While your phone is locked, you will be able to recieve calls and texts but you won’t be able to access them. However, when you’re flipd off you can still dial 911 or three other emergency contacts which you can set from the apps menu, which is to the left.
Pressing the “Auto Response” button can toggle auto response on or off. This feature allows you to automatically reply to people who are trying to contact you. This is very useful because you don’t want your friends to think you’re ignoring them (even though you might be). Flipd comes packed with a lot of auto responses, but you can also customize them to your liking.
The last button, “Flip Off Others”, doesn’t mean greeting someone with your middle finger. In fact, this is perhaps the most useful feature of the flipd app. This allows you to lock other people’s phone, provided they have the app installed. This is perfect for teamwork sessions, date night or even when you’re out with your friends. As for me, I think I will have to convince my friends to download the app so we can hangout without being distracted by our phones.
Even though flipd is very easy to use, the app comes with a built in tutorial that’s easy to follow and covers every aspect of the application. Below are some screenshots of the tutorial:
My experience with flipd has been positive. If I’m about to study I’m usually flipd off, which is helpful since it makes it a lot easier to stay focused when I don’t have access to my phone.
Whether you’re a student trying to get some studying done or a parent looking to keep your kids off their screens, flipd is the way to go. Without any major marketing push, flipd has over 4,000 downloads and has helped users save over 15,000 hours. Visit flipd’s official website for more information.
Flipd is available for Android devices, with an iOS version to come later this year.
Ironic as it may sound, would you use an app that helps you stay off your phone and perhaps kill your smartphone addiction?