Are you annoyed by ''iPhone is Too Close'' message?

Emre Çitak
Oct 12, 2023

iOS 17's Screen Distance feature has been well-received by many users. This feature, which encourages proper use of your phone, protects users' eye health, but many users are getting tired of receiving the annoying "iPhone is Too Close" alert message.

The iPhone Screen Distance feature utilizes the TrueDepth camera, which is also used for Face ID, to detect when your device is held too close to your face for an extended period. When this happens, the feature will remind you to increase the distance between your face and the screen.

Interestingly, this feature is automatically enabled for children under 13 who are part of a Family Sharing group, depending on local regulations. Unfortunately, a person with myopia has to bring objects closer to their eyes to see them without glasses.

If you're in a similar situation, or if you don't like having your TrueDepth camera on all the time, here is how to turn off Screen Distance in iOS 17.

Annoying iPhone alerts resulted in users asking how to turn off Screen Distance in iOS 17 - Image courtesy of Apple

How to turn off Screen Distance in iOS 17

To turn off Screen Distance in iOS 17:

  1. Open the Settings app
  2. Tap on Screen Time
  3. Tap on Screen Distance
  4. Toggle the Screen Distance switch to the Off position

Once you have turned off Screen Distance, you will no longer receive notifications when you hold your iPhone or iPad too close to your face.

Please note: Screen Distance is a feature that is designed to help protect your eyesight and reduce eye strain. It is recommended that you keep Screen Distance turned on, especially if you use your iPhone or iPad for long periods of time.

Consider twice

Even if you know the answer to how to turn off Screen Distance, it's worth thinking twice before doing so in iOS 17 as one of the most common eye problems in the modern world is digital eye strain. This is caused by prolonged exposure to digital screens, such as smartphones, tablets, and computers. Digital eye strain can cause a variety of symptoms, including:

  • Dry eyes
  • Blurred vision
  • Eye fatigue
  • Headache
  • Neck pain
  • Shoulder pain

Another common eye problem in the modern world is myopia, also known as nearsightedness. Myopia is a condition in which the eye can focus well on close objects but not on distant objects. Myopia is becoming increasingly common in children, and it is believed that increased screen time is a contributing factor.

With so many factors affecting our eye health in the modern world, it may not be wise to turn off this feature

Screen Distance in iOS 17 can help to reduce both digital eye strain and myopia by reminding users to hold their devices at least 12 inches (or 30 centimeters) away from their eyes but since you are here to learn how to turn off Screen Distance in iOS 17, it is best for you to:

  • Taking breaks from screens every 20 minutes to look at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds
  • Using night mode or reducing the brightness of screens in low-light environments
  • Adjusting the screen distance so that text is easy to read without having to strain
    Getting regular eye exams

And by emphasizing the importance of this, we end our article on how to turn off Screen Distance in iOS 17. To see other unique experiences that iOS 17 offers to users, check out our article titled ''You won't even believe what your iPhone can do''.


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