Android N's Power notification controls, explored: here's what those are & how to benefit from them


"What are those?" was our first reaction when we discovered Android N's deeply hidden Power notification controls. These arrived with alongside the first developer preview of Android N that surprised us a couple of months ago. Neatly concealed from curious eyes in the System UI Tuner menu, Android N's Power notification controls basically allow you to define the priority of the notifications for each app you have on your trusty handset.

This is an experimental feature that is useful and certainly has a lot of potential, but it's a tad overcomplicated in its current state. See, it allows you to choose between six different priority levels. Check out what each one of these does:

  • Level 5 — Allows full-screen interruption and the notification always peek from the top of the screen. Shows up at the top of your notification list.
  • Level 4 — This one prevents full-screen interruptions, but the notifications peek from the top of the screen.
  • Level 3 — It prevents full-screen interruptions and does not support notification peeking.
  • Level 2 — This one prevents full-screen interruptions and does not support notification peeking. You won't receive sound or vibration alerts about incoming notifications won't sound or vibrate.
  • Level 1 — No full-screen interruptions, no notification peeking, no sound or vibration alerts, not showing up on the lock screen and the status bar. The app's notifications will show up at the very bottom of your notification list.
  • Level 0 — All notifications from the app will be blocked.

This system is scoring some major changes with each and every developer preview of Android N. We don't even know if it will make it to the final release of the operating system at all. We hope it says for good, as it's giving users some welcome advanced control over their notifications. It's most certainly intended to aid Do Not Disturb mode and allow you to decide what apps should alert you and what shouldn't.

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