iOS 16 Put Notifications on Notice

Recently announced iOS 16 will feature a new look Lock Screen. One of the striking features is how notifications are now far less prominent than they have been ever since their arrival in iPhone OS 3.0 back in 2009.

The change is a signal that many users want to control what they see and when, rather than have application developers decide for them. In 2009 it was quiet novel to know instantly when someone liked your Facebook post. After 13 years the novelty has worn off. In fact, many notifications are just superfluous noise that don’t enrich our lives at all.

While there will always be a need for some kinds of notification, my sense is that there will be a shift towards being “off by default” in future iOS releases – much in the same way the Windows system tray ended up being filled with every possible kind of icon and Microsoft ended up just hiding them all by default.

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