Solving tech's bluish hold over our waking hours

Apple’s forthcoming iOS update has a new feature that could help users sleep better at night and minimize eye strain from device use. Called Night Shift, this feature alters the colors of the display at nightfall.

Using geolocation and the iOS clock, Night Shift can automatically activate when the sun sets. This feature alters the colors of the display by muting blue light, a known cause for sleepless nights.

Humans operate on a body clock called the circadian rhythm. A cycle is roughly equal to an Earth day (24 hours) and this rhythm is responsible why bedtime is ideally a fixed hour. This biological timekeeper relies on many factors to work, including the amount of light the eyes see. During sundown, when natural light dies down, the circadian rhythm releases a hormone called melatonin to drift us to sleep.

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