Phone hanging on a wall by a string with the text "do not disturb" on the screen

How To Stop Being Disturbed – Android Edition

Last week we showed you how to use Do Not Disturb on Apple devices. There is a similar functionality available for Android devices that we’d like to highlight this week.

What Is the Do Not Disturb Feature?

In case you missed last week’s article, the Do Not Disturb (DND) feature is exactly what it sounds like. You can set your phone to turn off notifications so you won’t be disturbed. With Android, you can schedule times to not be disturbed or you can set it on the fly. It’s not an all-or-nothing proposition, though. Suppose you’re used to setting DND at night to avoid being woken up, but your friend is expecting a baby and you want to make sure that call/text comes through no matter what time of day it is. You can set that contact’s communications to ring through the DND setting.

Use DND on the Fly, on a Schedule, or Both

If you’re about to go into a meeting or a classical music concert, you may want to turn on DND manually. To do that, swipe down from the top of your device to reveal shortcuts. If you only see 4 shortcuts, swipe down on those shortcuts to show more. Depending on where your DND shortcut is, you may need to swipe left or right to find it. In the screenshot, my DND is on the left side. I marked it in red to make it stand out.

Screenshot showing swipe-down menu with Do Not Disturb toggle circled in red on lower left

When you tap the icon quickly, it lights up and blocks all notifications and alarms (unless you have set exemptions). If you press and hold the icon, you get options to choose from. Tap the button at the top of the options page to turn it on or off. Just below that, you will see the kinds of exceptions you can make:

Screenshot of Do Not Disturb options screen
  • Clicking on People brings you to a screen with two options – messages and calls. Select one to choose who (from your contacts and conversations) can interrupt DND with that type of communication.
  • Selecting Apps will allow you to pick which app notifications come through. For example, if you don’t want to hear email notifications but want texts to break through the DND, this is where you would set that.
  • Alarms and other interruptions could be helpful if you want things like reminders and calendar events to override DND.
  • Schedules allows you to enter a sleep schedule or set options like activating DND automatically while gaming.
  • Duration will let you set an expiration time or leave it set to turn off manually.
    • By default, DND turns off sounds. If you would also like to turn off visual notifications, use the final option on this page.

Using Pixel Phone and Stand?

If you’re using a Pixel Stand to charge your Pixel phone, you can set it to go into DND mode anytime it is docked.

  • Open the phone’s Settings app
  • Tap “connected devices”
  • If you don’t see “Pixel Stand” under “previously connected devices,” tap “See All.”
  • Next to “Pixel Stand”, tap settings
  • Select “Do Not Disturb while docked”

Other docks and phone models may also have this feature. Check your documentation for details.


Do Not Disturb is a helpful tool if you want to configure your phone to stay quiet when you can’t be interrupted. If you’d like to learn even more about how to use Do Not Disturb on an Android phone, check out Google’s DND help page. Do you use DND on your phone? Let us know in the comments.

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