Android: Set custom brightness & screen timeout for individual apps

Martin Brinkmann
Oct 1, 2013
Updated • Aug 7, 2018
Apps, Google Android

There are several reasons why you may want to change the display brightness of your Android device. One is to save battery, as a darker screen requires less juice than a screen running as bright as the light of the sun.

There are other options, for instance if an app or game is very dark so that you need to increase the brightness on the phone to use it properly. Or, the other way round, that you want the screen brightness to be lower when you are using your phone late at night.

While you can make brightness changes whenever the need arises, it is not really something that is that comfortable. Imagine having to tweak the brightness setting each night, and then again in the morning. Something like this is an ideal scenario where optimization may make things more comfortable.

Update: Screen Controls is no longer available on Google Play. You can try Brightness Control instead which allows you to set different brightness levels for individual applications as well.

Screen Controls for Android

Screen Controls for Android is available as a free and paid version. The application is compatible with all versions of Android from 3.0 on.

The two core features that it makes available are to set a custom display brightness for individual apps that you run on your phone or tablet, and to set a custom screen time out for apps as well.

screen controls free custom screen brightness android

Lets say you watch videos using the YouTube app before you go to bed. To prepare for the night, you prefer the screen brightness to be not as bright as the default brightness. So, you select the YouTube application from the list of apps, and change the screen brightness level of it using the slider.

The screen timeout settings can be customized for each app in the same fashion. This may be useful for apps that you want to run in the background, like a music app for example. Once it starts to play a playlist, there is no real need for the screen to remain active anymore.

The program lists all apps by default. This is a large list, as system apps are included. If you are looking for a particular application, use the search to find it. If the app is running, you can alternatively switch to the running apps tab. The favorites tap lists apps that you open regularly on the device.

Besides options to set a custom screen brightness or custom screen timeouts for individual apps, it is also possible to change the global values using the app. To do so tap on the settings icon in the apps' interface.

Here you get the same configuration options, only that the settings here are valid for all apps that are not using customized values.

Free. vs. Paid

The difference between the free and paid version is that the paid version comes without ads, while the free version displays them at the bottom of the screen.


The application provides you with better control over the device's screen brightness and timeouts. While it takes a minute or so to configure the brightness level and timeouts for individual apps, it is a one-time operation that saves you a lot of time in the long run.

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  1. bruh said on August 18, 2023 at 1:25 pm

    Uhh, this has already been possible – I am not sure how but remember my brother telling me about it. I’m not a whatsapp user so not sure of the specifics, but something about sending the image as a file and somehow bypassing the default compression settings that are applied to inbound photos.

    He has also used this to share movies to whatsapp groups, and files 1Gb+.

    Like I said, I never used whatsapp, but I know 100% this isn’t a “brand new feature”, my brother literally showed me him doing it, like… 5 months ago?

  2. 💥 said on August 18, 2023 at 3:55 pm

    Martin, what happened to those: 12 Comments ( Is there a specific justifiable reason why they were deleted?

    Hmm, it looks like the gHacks website database is faulty, and not populating threads with their relevant cosponsoring posts.

  3. 45 RPM said on August 19, 2023 at 6:29 pm

    The page on ghacks this is on represents the best of why it has become so worthless, fill of click-bait junk that it’s about to be deleted from my ‘daily reads’.

    It’s really like “Press Release as re-written by some d*ck for clicks…poorly.” And the subjects are laughable. Can’t wait for “How to search for files on Windows”.

    1. owl said on August 20, 2023 at 12:51 am

      > The page on ghacks this is on represents the best of why it has become so worthless, fill of click-bait junk…

      Sadly, I have to agree.

      Only Martin and Ashwin are worth subscribing to.
      Especially Emre Çitak and Shaun are the worst ones.

      If intended “Clickbait”, it would mark the end of Ghacks Technology News.
      Ghacks doesn’t need crappy clickbaits. Clearly separate articles from newer authors (perhaps AIs and external sales person or external advertising man) as just “Advertisements”!

      We, the subscribers of Ghacks, urge Martin to make a decision.

  4. chessandonions said on August 20, 2023 at 12:40 am

    because nevermore wants to “monetize” on every aspect of human life…

  5. Frank Rizzo said on August 20, 2023 at 11:52 pm

    “Threads” is like the Walmart of Social Media.

  6. Ashray said on August 21, 2023 at 4:06 pm

    How hard can it be to clone a twitter version of that as well? They’re slow.

  7. Paul(us) said on August 21, 2023 at 5:16 pm

    Yes, why not mention how large the HD files can be?
    Why, not mention what version of WhatsApp is needed?
    These omissions make the article feel so bare. If not complete.

    1. Paul(us) said on August 21, 2023 at 5:18 pm

      Sorry posted on the wrong page.

  8. Marc said on August 21, 2023 at 6:00 pm

    such a long article for such a simple matter. Worthless article ! waste of time

  9. plusminus_ said on August 21, 2023 at 7:54 pm

    I already do this by attaching them via the ‘Document’ option.

  10. John G. said on August 21, 2023 at 11:43 pm

    I don’t know what’s going on here at Ghacks but it’s obvious that something is broken, comments are being mixed whatever the article, I am unable to find some of my later posts neither. :S

  11. Tom Hawack said on August 23, 2023 at 2:28 pm

    Quoting the article,
    “As users gain popularity, the value of their tokens may increase, allowing investors to reap rewards.”

    Besides, beyond the thrill and privacy risks or not, the point is to know how you gain popularity, be it on social sites as everywhere in life. Is it by being authentic, by remaining faithful to ourselves or is it to have this particular skill which is to understand what a majority likes, just like politicians, those who’d deny to the maximum extent compatible with their ideological partnership, in order to grab as many of the voters they can?

    I see the very concept of this as unhealthy, propagating what is already an increasing flaw : the quest for fame. I won’t be the only one to count himself out, definitely.

    1. Tom Hawack said on August 23, 2023 at 2:34 pm

      @John G. is right : my comment was posted on [] and it appears there but as well here at []

      This has been lasting for several days. Fix it or at least provide some explanations if you don’t mind.

  12. Tom said on August 24, 2023 at 11:53 am

    > Google Chrome is following in Safari’s footsteps by introducing a new feature that allows users to move the Chrome address bar to the bottom of the screen, enhancing user accessibility and interaction.

    Firefox did this long before Safari.

  13. Mavoy said on September 16, 2023 at 2:17 pm

    Basically they’ll do anything except fair royalties.

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