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I have a question about the screen management in phyphox, which may be more general than just phyphox, I do not know...

When I use phyphox, my screen stays open, even though I have selected in my Android parameters that I want the screen to shut off after two minutes of non-activity. The fact that my screen doesn't shut off when phyphox is running, even if I am not touching the smartphone, is obviously a good thing, I do not want my experiment to stop. But I have noticed, when working with students, that it is not the case for every smartphone. Some of my students have smartphones whose screen goes black after a couple of minutes if they are not touching it, even though a phyphox experiment is running. Which obviously is a problem for them, and for me.

Since I do not have this problem myself, it is difficult for me to test it. Is this a known problem?


No, not a known problem. In principle, phyphox should keep the screen awake while a measurement is running or the webinterface (remote access) is enabled. It should allow the screen to go to standby if the measurement is paused and the webinterface is not enabled.

It might either be a bug that allows the block is not enabled in some situations (screen rotations, switching between apps, notifications etc. are good candidates where we might miss an edge case) or something system or permission specific. Do you know if it is always the same phone models that go to sleep and if so, which ones?

Thank you for your reply, Sebastian. No, unfortunately I did not keep track of that. When it happened I just thought that it was the screen going asleep, I only realised afterward that phyphox should be blocking that. OK, so it is not a known issue, next time I encounter it I will investigate. Other that the OS version and device information, is there any other quick tests that would be pertinent to perform?

(for completness, webinterface was not activated, but an experiment was running, and I want the experiment to run for 15 minutes. I told students not to swithch apps and I think they didn't, don't know about notification or screen rotation though).

Thank you,


No, I really have no idea yet what could cause this. I assume the experiment was stopped because of the screen being turned off, right?
On iOS notifications could briefly stop the app, so a focus mode could not harm…

I have just learned that on Android there are apps, for instance, that switch off the screen without affecting apps. So a blank screen might not necessarily be the reason.
Well I will try my best to test the circonstances next time I see the problem. Yes, you are right Sebastian, the experiment was stopped, and I assume it is because the screen had been turned off.

Jens, it was an experiment very much like one you tested during your stay in Orsay, the one that challenges the participants to build a tower with the smartphone at its top. Is is always a bit hectic during these 15 minutes, and difficult to track that all smartphones are working.

Reading your link, Jens, I realise that certain applications have the right to act even though another applications is running ("can supperpose with other apps"). That could complicate things...

Thank you both,

I have it still installed! Smile So I could play around with it on iOS…

Some info, should anyone encounter the same question. I had again the problem of the screen shutting off during an experiment, but I had the time to investigate a bit. The reason in that particular case seems to be that the smarthpone (android) was on energy saving mode because of a low battery level. I guess this mode can force phyphox to release the screen. On the same phone, after charge and a full battery, the experiment could run with the screen on without any difficulty.


Thank you, Fred, for following up on this. Do you remember the smartphone manufacturer? Some mess around with additional “features” (even though it seems an unlikely cause in this case)…
(04-07-2023, 06:06 PM)Jens Noritzsch Wrote: [ -> ]Thank you, Fred, for following up on this. Do you remember the smartphone manufacturer? Some mess around with additional “features” (even though it seems an unlikely cause in this case)…

Ah, no, sorry. I assumed that it was a general feature of the android energy saving mode, is that not the case? (I can send an email to the student, or do some test on my own smartphone by the way)