Researchers have long said that the blue light emitted from electronic devices such as smartphones, tablets and monitors can affect people’s ability to get to sleep, especially when they are used in the evening and late at night. There are some solutions that remove this blue spectrum light, such as the Drift TV box from Saffron, but now Google’s Play Books app has introduced a feature that does the same thing.
The new light filter, called ‘night light,’ should make perusing late night novels easier on readers' eyes, as well as allowing them to get a better night’s sleep. It uses hues of amber based on natural sunlight to filter the blue spectrum light, thereby reducing eye strain.
You can turn the night light mode on or off in the same section as the other visual adjustments. When activated, the screen will slowly remove the blue light as the evening wears on, becoming a warmer amber color as time passes.
Earlier this month, Amazon rolled out a similar feature in a software update for its Fire tablets. Called Blue Shade, the nighttime reading mode uses special filters to limit exposure to blue light.
Scientists say some people experience problems sleeping because the blue light affects their melatonin production – the hormone that anticipates the daily onset of darkness and plays a role in regulating circadian rhythms. An increasing number of companies are offering ways to remove blue spectrum light from screens in the evenings, and the option may eventually become a standard feature on many electronic devices.
Google said the new Night Light feature is rolling out to Google Play Books on both Android and iOS. The update also adds the option to receive notifications when an author in your library publishes a new book.