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Should I Close iOS Apps By Flipping Them Up and Off Screen?

One school of thought says keep your iOS devices cleaned up by closing apps that are just sitting there behind the current page, the other says they’re “frozen” and not using any resources and force-quitting them by flipping them away can do more harm than good. Confusing.
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John Stires

Comments: 5 Responses to “Should I Close iOS Apps By Flipping Them Up and Off Screen?”

    2 years ago

    Yes, this is being discussed a lot lately. Gruber says no, never and some other voices say well, sometimes.

    Gruber is right in his basic premise. People obsessively quit apps and it doesn’t do any good as iOS is great at taking care of itself when it comes to apps using processor power. Apps in the background are almost always frozen. But there are some apps that misbehave, it is true. But those are getting rarer and rarer.

    Don’t be freaked out by messages like “app X is using your location” or getting notifications from apps while they are not “running.” iOS is doing a lot of that. For instance, apps register with the system to get and pass along notifications so it is really iOS that is showing you the notifications, not the app running in the background.

    When an app misbehaves, it is usually obvious. I started Waze the other day (GPS driving directions app) and used it for a minute to see what route it recommended. Then I left the app. A little while later I noticed the battery was draining faster than it should and it was Waze to blame. Bad Waze.

    So what do I do? I definitely do NOT quit apps. I take my standard attitude of letting the iPhone/iOS do its thing and I don’t worry about it. I find that in almost all situations it works fine. I probably have 40-50 apps frozen in the background right now on my phone and the battery is draining hardly at all. But if I do notice it draining, I’ll check the Battery section of Settings and figure out what is causing it and stop using that app or find out why that app is doing that.

    Brad Smith
    2 years ago

    Would it not be easier to Restart the device every few days? I tend to do this once a week for ‘housekeeping’.

    2 years ago

    Brad: Unless you are having an issue, I don’t see restarting doing anything helpful. On the contrary, it would force all apps to restart, which means slower access to them the next time you need the app.

    carl hammel
    2 years ago

    I fail to understand why, when you realized that your battery was draining faster then normal and Waze was to blame, that you did not quit Waze.
    My practice is to quit any app which uses GPS as soon as I am done with it to avoid battery drain.

    2 years ago

    carl: I DID quit Waze when I realized it was doing that. It just took a while for me to notice the battery drain.

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