Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Curb your Android smartphone addiction with “Lock Me Out” [XDA Spotlight]

Smartphone addiction can be a serious issue. There was a time when mobile phones were used only for calling and texting (and that too with triple-tapping physical keypads or using T9). It meant that users spent far less time on mobile devices than they do today. At that time, there were no huge 6-inch 18:9 displays. There was no Wi-Fi or LTE connectivity, and battery life used to be counted in days and weeks, not hours.

Now, things are dramatically different. Users spend hours on smartphones these days, with screen-on time going all the way to 6-8 hours. With social media, web browsing, media consumption, apps, games, etc, it’s too easy to keep using smartphones until the battery inevitably runs out. Smartphone addiction means that people waste their time doing things that are not relatively important, and lose out on time spent in the real world.

Somewhat ironically, there are smartphone apps to help with that. There are so many apps designed to draw users’ attention, but equally, there is an increasing number of apps designed to curb users’ smartphone addiction.

Lock Me Out is one such app that allows users to lock themselves out of their device. Its features include:

  • Lock the phone out to the lock screen.
  • Quick lock buttons to choose lockout time between 15 minutes, 30 minutes, 1 hour, 2 hours, and 3 hours).
  • Lock until a pre-determined time.
  • Lock later at a pre-determined time range.
  • Schedule regular daily lockouts.
  • Automatic locking-out of the device based on the user’s usage.
  • Usage monitor for daily statistics of screen-on time, number of unlocks, and unlock rate.
  • Notifications that warn the user about their usage.
Lock Me Out Lock Me Out Lock Me Out Lock Me Out Lock Me Out Lock Me Out

All of the features above come in the free version of the app which doesn’t include any ads. As it comes with a broad feature set, it can be customized to users’ needs. Users should note that it uses the Device Administrator permission in Android as it’s required to lock out the screen for users during their chosen lockout period.

If users use a third-party replacement lock screen, then Lock Me Out will lock the screen as soon as they turn it on. This is because third-party lock screens don’t notify the system when they are unlocked, so users should keep this in mind. It should also be noted that on Android 7.1 and older, users will have to first toggle “Device administrator” off from inside the app or from the system settings before it can be uninstalled.

The app also has a premium version, and its features include:

  • Choose apps allowed during a lockout.
  • Lock yourself out completely (screen off).

Lock Me Out does its job as a tool to curb smartphone addiction as it effectively cuts off access to smartphones. To give an analogy, this is equivalent to switching off the Internet connection on a device when a user requires no distraction from the Internet. In this way, it works, and it works well. The app is available on both the Google Play Store and XDA Labs, and there’s also an XDA forum thread where the developer posts announcements.

Lock Me Out 🥇 Freedom from phone addiction (Free+, Google Play) →

Lock Me Out (Free, XDA Labs) →

We have 20 promotional codes to give away for the premium version of Lock Me Out, so leave a comment below linking to your XDA Forum Profile and keep an eye out on your private message inbox if you want one!


Note: this article is not sponsored in any way by the developer of Lock Me Out. The developer is an active contributor on our forums and as a courtesy, we generally cover applications, modifications, or anything else made by active members that we think our readers might be interested in. If you have shared something on our forums that you think deserves a shout out on the Portal, send us a tip.

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