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(Credit: Shelby Brown / Download.com)

Facebook (iOS, Android) started working on its "time spent" tracker earlier this year. Now the new feature is rolling out publically to apps.

The tool counts how many minutes you spend on the social media site each day a week and provides an average.

To see how long you spend on Facebook is easy to access and understand:

  1. Open the Facebook app
  2. Tap the Settings icon in the top right corner
  3. Scroll down and tap Settings & Privacy
  4. Select Your Time on Facebook

SEE: Over half of US teens have decided to limit their smartphone and social media use

The generated chart will either make you feel better about how you spend your time or potentially worse. If anything, it'll make you more aware of how much you use social media.

Facebook doesn't just tell you that you're addicted to your smartphone, it gives ways for you to cut back.

Underneath the time graph, you can edit what you see on Facebook. Tapping News Feed Preferences lets you choose which posts you see first, unfollow people, refollow people, manage which users you've "snoozed," and hide certain apps from your news feed.

The most useful feature perhaps is "Set Daily Reminder." Entering in a time limit lets Facebook alert you when you've met it. You can set a timer for a few hours or a few minutes.

You can also tweak your notification settings to limit the number of push notifications that Facebook can send you. For example, if you're editing how much you see birthday announcements, you can choose if you only want a push notification, an email, or a text. You can also toggle off the notifications altogether. There are options to turn off notifications for upcoming birthdays or belated birthdays, too.

Facebook isn't alone in adding digital wellness tools to its app. Instagram, YouTube, and Apple's iOS 12 have all included ways to combat smartphone addiction.

At face value, it might not make sense that companies would want you to spend less time on their apps. But, social media is in the midst of a societal backlash and this is a way for companies to come across as proactive and helpful.

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(Credit: Shelby Brown / Download.com)

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Takeaways

  1. Facebook is rolling out its Time Spent Tracker to the public. The tool shows you how long you've spent on Facebook each day of the week.
  2. The app includes ways to get fewer notifications, unfollow friends, hide apps from your newsfeed, manage what you see on your feed, and set timers for your usage.

Also see

Shelby is an Associate Writer for CNET's Download.com. She served as Editor in Chief for the Louisville Cardinal newspaper at the University of Louisville. She interned as Creative Non-Fiction Editor for Miracle Monocle literary magazine. Her work appears in Glass Mountain Magazine, Bookends Review, Soundings East, and on Louisville.com. Her cat, Puck, is the best cat ever.