MacMost Now 920: Switching Between and Quitting Apps In iOS 7

Switching between apps is different in iOS 7 compared to earlier versions of iOS. You can now easily bring up a list of currently running and recently used apps, and flip through the list. Then you can jump to one. You can also use this list to quit an app. A second method exists to force-quit a stubborn app.
Video Transcript / Captions
Closed captioning for this video is available on YouTube: MacMost Now 920: Switching Between and Quitting Apps In iOS 7.

Hi this is Gary with MacMost Now. On today's episode I want to show you how to switch between apps and how to quit apps in iOS 7.

In iOS 7, just like before, you can launch any app by tapping on the icon. Now whether or not you are inside the app or you are viewing the home screen if you want to switch between apps all you need to do is double press the Home button.

This brings up the app switcher which looks very different than the recent apps list did before where you just saw it at the bottom of the screen. Now you actually see a little screen shot of where you are on the previous app that you were viewing and also a list of icons at the bottom.

For instance lets go into Game Center here and I will double tap on the Home button. You can see it took me back to the clock which allows you to quickly switch back and forth between two separate apps. So here I am at Clock. I double press and it is Game Center. So the previous app is always going to be in the center.

Now you can, of course, always swipe left and right to view anything all the back to the home screen on the left. You can go and look at all the different apps that you are running. You can see each one and when you want to jump to one you just simply tap it in the middle of the screen there to jump to it.

It will reorder things of course showing you the previous app there in the middle and the app that you were just in just to the left.

Now you can also scroll back and forth using the icons at the bottom which scrolls faster. Here you can see it kind of scrolls linearly but here it is kind of expedential. It scrolls very quickly as I move through these icons. So it is a good quick way to go through your entire listing and view things that you haven't been using for a while.

You can still switch between apps using the four-fingered move back and forth. So a swipe back and forth with four fingers on the screen will quickly move between the apps without having to go to that intermediate screen.

Now sometimes in iOS it is necessary to quit an app, completely quit it instead of having it kind of frozen in the background as it normally would during multi-tasking. So say I wanted to quit the Clock app. This is very different in iOS 7. It is not like you did before in iOS 6.

Simply you tap in the middle of the screen and you drag upward, and you can see I can kind of move this up, if I drag up and away the app quits and it is removed from the list there.

Now a second way exists to force quit an app. That is if you are in the app. You can tap and hold the Sleep/Wake button at the top of your iPad until you see the "slide to power off". But instead of "slide to power off" you press and hold the home button on your iPad and wait a few seconds. What will happen is that app will quit and it will return to the home screen like that.

Now I have noticed that some apps behave differently. Some will quit completely and return you to the home screen like this. Others will simply relaunch themselves which may be the behavior you want if you are having trouble with an app. Say it is frozen you may want it to relaunch itself.

Now another thing about force quitting an app that way is that the app will stay in your recents list so you can easily get back into it if you want. But it does actually force quit the app so if it is frozen it should help you there.

So there is how to switch between apps and force quit apps in iOS 7.

Until next time this is Gary with MacMost Now.

Comments: 17 Responses to “MacMost Now 920: Switching Between and Quitting Apps In iOS 7”

    Dave Cook
    6 years ago

    Very Helpful – Thank you.

    6 years ago

    You can also bring up the running apps with the 4-finger swipe from the bottom just like in IOS 6 and earlier.

      Paul Schluter
      6 years ago

      When I do the 4-finger swipe on my 4S (with 7.0.2) from the bottom it is just like I am doing a regular scroll-up in the app.

        6 years ago

        The 4-finger swipe is specific to the iPad. It doesn’t work on the iPhone. I can’t even fit four fingers across the bottom.

    6 years ago

    is there a way to disable game centre. It seems to go away after I click cancel a few times, but it isn’t a feature I want or use

      6 years ago

      Game Center doesn’t do anything on its own. Other apps use it. So it depends on what app is using it. You can disable that app’s use of Game Center, and also Game Center notifications. Depends what you are trying to do, specifically. You write “click cancel a few times” — cancel what, exactly?

    6 years ago

    Thanks for this Gary it was very helpful. However after downloading IOS 7 some of my apps are still saying “waiting” and although I am on wi-fi they will not download and it has been hours since I loaded the software. BTW, these same ones don’t appear in the side-to-side scrolling list that you demonstrated. Any idea of what has happened to them? I have been looking around to see if others have this problem. Thanks.

      6 years ago

      Really impossible for me to guess. Problems need first-hand help. I’d take it to the Genius Bar.

      5 years ago

      I also have the ‘waiting’ sign on 4 apps on my iPad touch,I can’t even delete them and start again. I have tried syncing them on my laptop in iTunes.
      Where do I go from here?

    6 years ago

    Hi Gary,

    I like and appreciate your site, really helpful for some of my issues. Another question I have that is related to this video is, can multiple apps in the recent list be closed all at once? Would save me many swipes when I get my iPad back from my kids who don’t bother to close apps they use!

      6 years ago

      No, there isn’t. And it wouldn’t save you any steps. On the one hand you’d need to select each one and then press a button to quit them. So quitting 9 apps would take 10 steps. But now you can do 9 swipes, so 9 steps.
      You don’t need to worry so much about quitting apps. A typical iOS user should never have to quit apps. Most pas aren’t doing anything. Think of them as “frozen” if it helps.

    6 years ago

    Many thanks – couldn’t figure out to quit an app at all! Was interesting to see in the previous comment though that you didn’t need to worry about quitting an app because “they don’t do anything”. I guess I was thinking it was helping to free up memory – like my computer!

    6 years ago

    Thank you Gary very helpful as usual

    David K
    6 years ago

    Thanks – always useful – though I did prefer the look and feel of the previous iOS.

    6 years ago

    Thanks Gary……very helpful!

    Ruth K
    6 years ago

    Thank you for your very useful newsletters. I save them all! Am I correct in believing that open apps in the background use up the battery life quicker on a iPhone 5? Many are reporting shorter battery life since the upgrade.

      6 years ago

      No. Apps running in the background shouldn’t use battery. Some apps do — because you are using them (like a bike or jogging tracking app). But normal apps running properly won’t. Think of them as “frozen” in the background if it helps.
      Some people are also reporting better battery life since upgrading to iOS 5.

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