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I like to use Messages on my Mac, but it's generally incredibly annoying because every time I receive a message from someone, my iPhone lights up and plays its alert noise, which is a loud ding. I want it to do that in general, but not when I'm actively using Messages on my mac. Is there anyway to fix this situation? I have considered turning on "Do not disturb" on my phone, but I don't want to because I'm liable to forget I did and then miss important messages.

  • Do you use same account on laptop and on ihone? – Ruskes Aug 4 '13 at 8:14
  • Yes. I hadn't thought of using different accounts, but I'd like to be able to receive messages sent to me on both devices, otherwise I might miss something, or my friends will get confused about which one to use. – GuyGizmo Aug 4 '13 at 15:26
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Short of enabling Do Not Disturb on iPhone, or disabling notifications for the Messages app on iPhone (even more tedious than remembering to turn Do Not Disturb off), there is no direct way to prevent both iPhone and Mac from alerting you to the same message.

That said, I have noticed that if I am actively using Messages on Mac, after a few minutes I will start getting the messages on Mac first, and if I go to the Messages window quickly enough I will not get the alert on iPhone. Once I stop actively using Messages on Mac, the alerts on iPhone start appearing in a timely manner again. It seems to recognize which system or device you are actively using and delays notifications to the other systems/devices by a bit. The same occurs when I am using iPad - notifications on Mac and iPhone are delayed enough that if I read the message on iPad quickly enough, I will not get the notifications on the other devices.

I am not sure if the above is actually an unadvertised feature or just network delay, but it occurs consistently enough that I am quite sure there is some Apple intervention going on there.

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You can turn the notification sound off on the Mac so that it doesnt irritate you. Also you can choose to only get the notifications if your name is mentioned on the Mac Messages.

All of this can be done in Messages preferences.

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