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Best Practices
Best Practices

How to Set Up Opal

February 16, 2022
Opal Mascot
Team Opal
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The Basics

Here are the first steps you should take after discovering Opal!

1. Install the Opal app on your iPhone

Opal is available for download on the App Store. Once you have installed the app on your iPhone or iPad, you will be asked to answer a few questions to personalize the experience, start a free trial and install our secure VPN.

❓ Why pay for Opal?

🛠 Why does Opal need a VPN?

2. Set your Schedule

Set daily working hours, sleep and routines, choose apps and websites you want to block automatically, so you don’t have to remember. You can also start Timer directly from the app home view to focus right away.

📅 What is Schedule?

💡 What is Timer?

3. Enjoy!

Opal will automatically follow your schedule, and block apps/websites you set. If you chose this option, you can take breaks and reconnect to apps for a short time. You will also get timely reminders when you get distracted, and your Screen Time stats which you can find on the profile tab of your app.

⏸ What are Breaks?

🔌 How does Opal work?

Going Further

4. Install Shortcuts

To go further, you can set up shortcut automations that will make it impossible to bypass while Opal is blocking. Whenever you try to open a blocked app, you will be redirected automatically to the Opal app. This set up needs to be done for each app (for example, Instagram), so plan a few minutes of time and follow the instructions below:

🥽 How do I install shortcut automations?

5. Install Browser Extension

Don’t you wish Opal could work on your computer, too? You’re in luck. When you install Opal’s free Chrome extension on your computer, your Chrome browser will sync with Opal and block relevant apps and websites when needed. Install Opal from the Chrome Store and follow the instructions.

🖥 How do I install Opal on my computer?

6. Choose your protection level

When you set your schedule or start a timer, you will be able to choose your protection level:

  • Normal: you can take breaks and reconnect to apps
  • Deep Focus: you can’t cancel or bypass the timer
  • (only for Timer) Pomodoro: work and take breaks automatically following the Pomodoro technique

We recommend using Deep Focus when you really need to stay focused!

⏱ What is Protection?

⏸ What are Breaks?

Become a Pro

7. Set up your App Groups

Create a preset list of apps that Opal will block during a session or schedule, for example “Work Time Apps”

📲 How do I use App Groups?

8. Set up your iOS Widget

Use Opal directly from your home screen! Select the + button on your iPhone home screen to add an Opal widget

🔔 Does Opal have an iOS Widget?

9. Use Breaks with Intention

When you start a break, make sure you enter why you want to use your phone helps reduce mindless scrolling.

⏸ What are Breaks?

11. Choose a Gem name

In your app’s Settings or Profile, you can choose your Gem name to let others know who you are.

12. Customize your app icon

Choose your favorite Opal gem as an app icon.

🧪 Can I customize my Opal app icon?

13. Deep dive into your stats

Head to your app profile to explore your screen time stats and understand your progress.

14. Submit requests

We’re making Opal better together. Have feedback or requests for Opal? Submit them on ideas.opal.so

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