Maybe this is something you already know, but then again, maybe you’re just like me and this will be news to you…

I told a friend of ours who works at the Apple Store about an iPhone app that I’m beta testing; it drains huge amounts of my battery when the phone isn’t in use. He asked me if I’m closing the app. I said something intelligent, like, “Huh?” and he proceeded to explain that just because you stop using an app, it doesn’t mean that it’s shut down.

Mac users know that while x-ing out of a program on a PC closes it, it isn’t truly closed on a Mac until you “quit” it. Apparently the same is true on iPhones with the newest operating system, IOS4. We now have the ability to multi-task—leave an app without quitting it—but unless you actually go in and quit those apps they’re running all the time.

There are two ways to access those open apps. I see my most recently used apps all the time when I hold the home button down a little too long. You can also access them by double-clicking the home button. It will look like this, with your most recently used apps in a row along the bottom of the screen:

iPhone 4

Apps that appear in that row, however, are actually open. If you press and hold any of those icons, red circled “minus” buttons will appear, like this:

Just tap that red minus button and you quit the app (unlike tapping a red “x” button, which deletes it).

My husband had 53 open apps; he didn’t realize he even had that many on his phone. I stopped counting in the 60s, but I’m sure every. single. app. on my phone was open, the equivalent of using a computer with all programs running.

I’m not going to freak out and shut them down constantly now, but the end of each day or two should suffice. It’s certainly better than never.

Did you realize you needed to quit your apps?


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