How I’ve achieved notification nirvana with a smartphone / smartband combo

TL;DR I’m using a cheap Sony SmartBand SWR10 to get selective vibrating notifications on my wrist from my Android phone. I never miss anything important, and I’m not constantly checking my devices.

Sony SmartBand SWR10 - image via Digital Trends

Every year I take between one and two months away from social media and blogging. I call this period Belshaw Black Ops. One of the things I’ve really enjoyed during these periods is not being constantly interrupted by notifications.

The problem with notifications systems on smartphones is that they’re still reasonably immature. You’re never really sure which ones are unmissable and which ones are just fairly meaningless social updates. When a pre-requisite of your job is ‘keeping up to date’ it’s difficult to flick the binary switch to off.

Thankfully, I’ve come across a cheap and easy way to simplify all of this. After finding out about the existence of Sony smartbands via HotUKDeals (a goldmine of knowledge as well as deals) I bought the SWR10 for about £20. It connects via NFC and Bluetooth to Android smartphones.

The battery life of the smartband is about 3-4 days. I wear it almost all of the time - including in bed as I use the vibrating alarm to wake me up when I start to stir. I choose not to use the Sony lifelogging app as I’m not really interested in companies having that many details about me. It’s the reason I stopped wearing a Fitbit.

Sony SmartBand SWR10 notifications

My wife and I use Telegram to message each other, so my wrist vibrates discreetly when she sends me a message. I’ve also got it configured to vibrate on calendar events, phone calls, and standard SMS messages.

All of this means that my smartphone is almost permanently in Silent mode. The vibration on my wrist is enough for me to feel, but not for others to hear. It’s pretty much the perfect system for me - notification nirvana!

Comments? Questions? I’m @dajbelshaw or you can email me:


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