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Blocking doesn't seem to be working

If apps/websites are not being blocked by Opal when they should, or the contrary, follow the steps below.

Please note: if you have a personal relationship with engineers at Apple and enjoy Opal, we’d love to connect with them on this list of issues we are facing with Screen Time API and why they matter.

Case 1: Nothing Works

Occasionally, Screen Time settings may get stuck which could result is blocking not working for all apps/websites. It can show up in a few ways. For example:

I am in a session but nothing is blocked
I am not in a session but my apps are still blocked
I am taking a break but my apps are still blocked

If you have an active session running, you should see a warning message in the session with troubleshooting steps:

Regardless, here is how to fix the issue:

Step 1: Reload Blocks

Go to the Opal app's Blocks tab, hit Reload Blocks, confirm.

If this doesn't fix the issue:

Step 2: Close and Open the Opal App

Force close the Opal app and open it again to reset the connection.

Close an app on your iPhone or iPod touch - Apple Support

If this doesn't fix the issue:

Step 3: Restart your Device

Turn your device off and on again.

Restart your iPhone - Apple Support

If this doesn't fix the issue:

Step 4: Reload Session

If you are in an active Opal session, turn this session off by tapping "Leave Early", and restart the session.

If this doesn't fix the issue:

Step 5: Reset Screen Time Connection

If none of the above work, you can try to rest Opal's connection to Screen Time. To do this:

  • In the Opal app, open Settings (tap your gem name)
  • Go to Help Center or FAQ
  • Tap Troubleshooting
  • Tap 'Reset my Screen Time Connection"
  • Wait for a few seconds, you will get a confirmation message once the reset is complete.
Please note: unfortunately, resetting your screen time connection will mean you may lose your focus score data history, available on the home page and score page. This is due to the fact that this data is private, and only available through Screen Time connection. Opal does not store this data anywhere. However, all other information, including your sessions, milestones, and profile information will be saved.

If all of this doesn’t help:

Last Step: Give Permissions On Another App

If none of the above work, you can try giving Screen Time permissions on a different app.

  • Keep Opal open but in the background
  • Download a different Screentime app, such as this app
  • Go through the onboarding of their app until you give Screentime permissions (this may take some time)
  • Once approved, re-open Opal

Case 2: this specific app/website should be blocked but it's not

Occasionally, one or a few apps/websites you have selected will not be blocked. For example:

I am in a session blocking Linkedin and Instagram, Linkedin is blocked but Instagram is not blocked.

Here is what to do about it:

Step 1: Review "Always Allowed" Apps

Your iPhone Screen Time settings has an "Always Allowed" list of apps, which is generated automatically by Apple. Apps that are in the "always allowed" category will always be allowed, and supersede any restrictions Opal puts in place.

Start by making sure apps you want to block are not in the "Always Allowed" category of your iPhone's Screen Time settings. Go to your iPhone's Settings => Screen Time.

We recommend keeping apps you deem essential, such as Messages or Camera, in the "Always Allowed" category.

Here's where to find the Always Allowed app in your iPhone's Screen Time settings

If this doesn't fix the issue:

Step 2: Check Apps and Websites Are Selected

Let's make sure that the apps and websites you are testing are selected in the list for Opal to block, you can do this by following these steps.

If this doesn't fix the issue:

Step 3: Check Session Is Active

Let's make sure that the Session is currently active to block the apps and websites you want. Open the Opal app, and open the Active Session to check.

Please note: you cannot have two overlapping sessions. If a Session is scheduled to overlap, the first one to start will be active, and the other will not.

Case 3: Opal is blocking an app/website it shouldn't.

If Opal is blocking an app/website when it shouldn't, follow the steps here.

That's it! If you problem is still not resolved, please send us a report in the Opal app. Read how to contact Opal, report a bug or give feedback on Opal here.

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