Stop * now * manually closing apps on iOS, you're only making things worse

There are certain ways that are difficult to let go of, as well as some concepts that just don't get out of our heads. But today's tip is very basic and you, the iPhone / iPad user, need to try to incorporate it.

Before I get into the details of the question, let's get straight to the heart: * now * stop manually closing apps on iOSbecause you are only making things worse. Doing this you are getting a result just opposite to what you imagine, which will free up memory (RAM) on your device and save battery.

If you want to understand what happens, keep reading.

Closing apps on iOS

The theme is obviously nothing new; it was brought up this week by John Gruber, from the blog Daring Fireball. In short, this "addiction" that many have to leave throwing the windows of the apps up in order to close them, in large part, is the fault of Apple itself.

IOS is still a very new operating system, so it is also very modern. Its own multitasking environment only appeared in version 4, in 2010, and has been improved since then. But the most important thing to know is that, since that conception, Apple has worked to make it very, very smart and optimized.

At that time, responding to an email from a consumer, Steve Jobs stated:

Simply use (iOS multitasking) as it was designed, and you'll be happy. There is never a need to close apps.

We covered this subject here on the website in March last year, when Craig Federighi senior vice president of software engineering at Apple responded forcefully to an email from another customer, saying the same thing: one should not close apps manually on iOS and this does not contribute to battery life.

When I say “Apple's fault”, I mean how the iOS multitasking interface works. It has changed a lot since it came to the operating system, but nowadays it basically presents (when we double-click the Start button) all the windows of the “open” apps in a kind of stack that you scroll to the left indefinitely. And it has no limit, that is, if you opened an app a month ago and didn’t “threw his window up”, it will appear at the end of the line and you will see on the screen a screenshot of the last thing you did while you were using it.

This is exactly what generates “discomfort” in so many people, the false impression that the app is there, running in the background, consuming CPU, occupying RAM and eating the battery (even because, when we touch the window, it goes back to work well quickly). Is not, believe.

Apple software engineers have worked for years and continue to work to make this whole multitasking system extremely complex / advanced under the hood, but as simple as possible for the user itself. Whoever is in charge of managing all this CPU / RAM usage is iOS itself, in an extremely intelligent way and that is possibly one of the most differentiating factors from it compared to Android.

As the "little windows" are still there in the multitasking pile and there is absolutely no visual indication as to what is still going on and what is not, many people prefer to simply close everything in order to "feel calm" that nothing is unnecessarily open . The problem that reopening an app from scratch “costs” a lot (!) More of the device than simply “unfreezing” it from multitasking. Not only that, but it takes longer as well.

Apple itself explains this in this support article:

Recently used apps are displayed by double-clicking the Home button. Apps are not open, but in standby to help you navigate and do several things at the same time. Just force an app to close when it’s not responding.

The last sentence in the quote above already explains why this function exists. Yes, there are certain times when it is necessary to force an app to close:

  • If it is completely locked;
  • If any resources within it have stopped working;
  • If the app insists on keeping track of your location in the background.

This last point, by the way, is something that Apple is working on on iOS 11. Nowadays, going on Privacy Settings Location Services, you can configure, app by app, which one will have access to your geographic location. Most offer two options: “Never” or “While Using the Application” (which is ideal). Others, however, only offer "Never" or "Always" (as in the case of Waze, for example).

This, yes, something that can consume more battery unnecessarily. Fortunately, as of iOS 11, all apps will have to offer the option “During Application Use”. Not only that, but the system will show in an upper blue bar when a given app is using the background location.

This whole complex system developed by Apple, too, which makes Android users cry out for the ignorant reason that “iOS multitasking is not real”. It is not only real, as it is light years ahead of the "dumb" multitasking that simply leaves everything running in the background and, precisely, forces the user to keep doing all this management of the active processes on his device. Not surprisingly, the iPhone, with its 2-3GB of RAM (or even the old models, with even less RAM), runs and retrieves apps from memory better and faster than any latest generation Android with double or more RAM.

I know, my friends, letting go of this mania will not be an easy task. The placebo effect is making it even more difficult, since many people swear on their feet together that the system really gets lighter / faster after she leaves closing all apps manually.

The facts are out, confirmed by the iOS boss himself at Apple. If you want your iPhone / iPad to run well and want to save battery as much as possible, forget about closing your apps; you probably have more important things to worry about. And still gain some precious seconds of your day with this, which you can use today to share this precious tip with relatives / friends. 😉