Apple Approves 'FlexBright' iOS App That Adjusts Display Temperature [Update: Pulled]

FlexBright, an app that allows the user to manually adjust the display temperature of an iOS device, was recently approved by Apple, marking one of the first third-party apps that's able to function in a manner similar to the company's own Night Shift mode, set to be released in iOS 9.3. The only catch is it must be triggered somewhat manually in response to a notification, rather than continuously, like Night Shift or f.lux.

Currently available for download in the App Store, FlexBright was created by Intelligent Apps, who worked with Apple to find a way to implement blue light reduction capabilities. The app includes controls that allow it to both dim an iPhone or iPad's display and adjust the display temperature to cut down on blue light exposure.

FlexBright runs in the background on an iPhone or iPad, sending notifications to prompt users to change the brightness or the blue level on the display at sundown or at user-specified times. After tapping on the alert, FlexBright launches and changes the brightness or blue light filter to a preset value, which can introduce a lot more yellow light than Apple's own Night Shift mode in iOS 9.3. FlexBright's screen adjustments work throughout the iOS operating system, in third-party apps and on the Home screen.

flexbright
According to one of the developers behind FlexBright, using this notification system was the only way Apple would allow the app to change brightness or blue light while running in the background. The app does not use private APIs to change the screen temperature, instead utilizing a "native objective-c library that filters the blue light from the iOS screen."

In the app, which has an admittedly confusing interface, there are toggles to turn the screen yellower on demand and adjust alert times for the notifications that will allow it to work on an almost-automatic basis. There are also alerts for adjusting brightness and there's a toggle for a "Dark Mode" that turns the screen black and white, similar to (but not identical to) the Grayscale mode under Accessibility settings.

FlexBright is notable because it offers display temperature adjustments for devices that are not compatible with Apple's Night Shift mode. FlexBright is available on devices running iOS 7 or iOS 8, while Night Shift is limited to devices running iOS 9.3, and it's also available on non-64-bit devices like the iPhone 5 and earlier.

compare

Left Photo: Coolest, Center Photo: About half way, Right Photo: Warmest

Apple's decision to allow FlexBright into the app store is interesting because just a few months ago, there was a controversy over f.lux, a similar app. F.lux is a well-known blue light reduction app for the Mac that allows users to adjust their screen temperature, shifting it towards the warmer yellow spectrum in the evenings. In November, the developers behind f.lux launched an iOS version that was side-loaded on devices using Xcode due to its private APIs, something Apple quickly said was not allowed. F.lux's developers have said that it is not possible to introduce a f.lux app for iOS using Apple's existing tools and has asked the company to "open up access" to Night Shift features.

FlexBright has a primitive interface, and current color schemes seem yellower than Apple's implementation of Night Shift, but it opens up an interesting option, especially for those who have devices that won't be supported by Night Shift. FlexBright is available from the iOS App Store for $2.99. [Direct Link]

Update: FlexBright has been removed from the App Store. No explanation for the removal has been provided by Apple at this time.

Top Rated Comments

Chrjy Avatar
104 months ago
That is one confused UI design right there :eek:
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Norbs12 Avatar
104 months ago
How do they let this slip by but something of actual value like f.lux get's blocked...
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
adamneer Avatar
104 months ago
Whoever designed that logo must have thought they were a pharmaceutical company.
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
djang0 Avatar
104 months ago
what the f.lux?
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Burger Thing Avatar
104 months ago
Have a healthy lifestyle with regular sleep patterns and do some exercise - and you will fall asleep with no problems no matter what your frikkin' display color temperature is.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
mozumder Avatar
104 months ago
These color-temperature apps are completely useless to help sleep patterns. I tried Flux for a year.. complete waste.

The only thing it did was change everything to orange.
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

Apple car wheel icon feature yellow

Apple Cancels Electric Car Project

Tuesday February 27, 2024 11:05 am PST by
Apple has canceled all plans to release an autonomous, electric vehicle, reports Bloomberg. Apple has been working on an Apple Car for more than a decade and invested millions of dollars into development before deciding it was not a viable project. Apple's Chief Operating Officer Jeff Williams today told approximately 2,000 employees working on the Apple Car that the project was canceled,...
Beyond iPhone 13 Better Blue Face ID Single Camera Hole

Six Reasons to Wait for Next Year's iPhone 17

Thursday February 22, 2024 4:20 am PST by
Apple's iPhone development roadmap runs several years into the future and the company is continually working with suppliers on several successive iPhone models concurrently, which is why we sometimes get rumored feature leaks so far ahead of launch. The iPhone 17 series is no different, and already we have some idea of what to expect from Apple's 2025 smartphone lineup. If you plan to skip...
General Apps Messages

iOS 17.4 to Add This 'Groundbreaking' New Messaging Feature

Friday February 23, 2024 5:05 am PST by
With iOS 17.4, set to arrive in March 2024, Apple is bringing a new cryptographic security feature to iMessage called PQ3. This "groundbreaking" and "state-of-the-art" protocol provides "extensive defenses against even highly sophisticated quantum attacks," according to Apple. Let's break down what that means. Apple's iMessage service already supports end-to-end encryption, but security...
iOS 18 Mock iPhone 16 Feature Gray

iOS 18 Rumored to Be Compatible With These iPhone Models

Tuesday February 27, 2024 6:31 am PST by
iOS 18 will be compatible with the iPhone XR, and thereby also the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max models with the same A12 Bionic chip, according to a post on X today from a private account with a proven track record of sharing build numbers for upcoming iOS updates. The post was spotted by MacRumors contributor Aaron Perris, and it has since been deleted. However, this was likely because the...
iOS 17

iOS 17.4 Coming Soon With These New Features for Your iPhone

Monday February 26, 2024 6:08 am PST by
In a press release last month, Apple confirmed that iOS 17.4 will be released in March, and the update includes several new features and changes for the iPhone. Key new features in iOS 17.4 include major App Store changes in the EU, Apple Podcasts transcripts, and an iMessage security upgrade. The update also adds new emoji and includes preparations for the launch of next-generation CarPlay...
applearcade

Game Developers Describe 'Smell of Death' Around Apple Arcade

Monday February 26, 2024 7:24 am PST by
Some game developers are dissatisfied with Apple Arcade amid concerns about the subscription service's future, a new report claims. Sources speaking to mobilegamer.biz described a "smell of death" around Apple's games subscription service and noted the difference between the company's investment in TV and music, and its interest in games. "At the very top of the company there needs to be a ...