Apps that can run in background?

Discussion in 'iOS Apps' started by Sceneshifter, Jun 3, 2009.

  1. Sceneshifter macrumors 6502


    Jun 14, 2007
    Hey, before I begin: I only own my ipod touch for about two days now and never followed any news/rumors related to this device.

    So I understand you can not run apps in the background due to some rules etc... but I keep finding these reviews of apps that state they DO run in the background. I can not find them in the app store, perhaps they're old and this was once possible but not anymore? Or perhaps these apps are only for jailbroken touches and phones?

    Would be great if it was possible to be calling on skype (or any better voip app you might suggest) while browsing my mail/internet. However, clearly Skype closes itself of as soon as you ... close skype to go to browse :)

    I read somewhere that there is an app that would at the very least put you as 'idle' when you switch apps (which is already a little better than completely cutting you off...), but again is this a legit app or does it no longer exist or what ? I think that it's Beejive, but I'm not sure

    Last, is there any news of apple adding support for running apps in the background in an upcoming software update I am not aware of yet? I'm only asking as I suppose you've all seen what the Pre is doing, and that's pretty slick!

  2. kas23 macrumors 603


    Oct 28, 2007
    You can only run 3rd party Apps in the background on jailbroken phones. No exceptions.

    As for Apple allowing background running apps in the future, who knows? But, it doesn't look like it right now.
  3. fishkorp macrumors 68020


    Apr 10, 2006
    Ellicott City, MD
    Other than apps from Apple, they cannot run in the background without jailbreaking. Many apps keep your status saved server-side, like BeejiveIM and other IM clients. You may see more applications doing this once 3.0 is released and push notifications are implemented.
  4. uberamd macrumors 68030


    May 26, 2009
    You can run apps in the background on jailbroken devices. Apple is not adding the ability, but instead allowing for push notifications so if you close your AIM client for example, you can still get messages and you will be alerted by a badge number over the app icon.

    I jailbroke my devices for backgrounding, and it just killed my battery since when you sleep the device off the iPod cuts out WiFi so you then need an app to make WiFi stay active, which drains the battery worse.
  5. Sceneshifter thread starter macrumors 6502


    Jun 14, 2007
    Any free clients that allow this storing on a webserver thing?

    Thanks for the quick replies so far everybody!
  6. Mr. Giver '94 macrumors 68000

    Mr. Giver '94

    Jun 2, 2008
    I think it's interesting that the Apple standard apps run in the background. For example, start the stop watch in the clock and it will keep going no matter what until you stop it.
  7. wooo macrumors member

    Mar 23, 2006
    ooTunes Radio can keep playing radio streams in the background when used with the ooTunes Server. this takes advantage of the fact that safari keeps running in the background. My personal belief is that apple will allow "background apps" the day they have a device that they can upsell everyone to. Add a bit more CPU power and memory and allow that and a ton of people will ditch their old 3G iPhone to buy the new one.

    The notifications are fine for most "background" purposes but don't address at all important things like music playback (which based on the apps in the top 20 paid and free apps in the music section are a big market).

    My $.02 (and shameless plug). Jailbreaking is probably the best way as most of the others mentioned (and I've had reports that my own app works pretty well with "backgrounder".)
  8. JonHimself macrumors 68000


    Nov 3, 2004
    Toronto, Ontario
    To be honest, as far as I know, the background apps, for me, are only useful for the music apps. I'm perfectly ok with push for things like IM, twitter, or whatever else but things like imeem,, satellite app (soonish), would be great in the background.
  9. SFC Archer macrumors 68000

    SFC Archer

    Nov 9, 2007
    Troy, MT
    ooTunes radio does all of that and runs in the background through Safari while you use your other apps. This is what wooo was trying to tell you above. I use this app daily and am able to use all of my apps on the phone without shutting down ooTunes.
  10. mrbass macrumors member

    Oct 13, 2008
    #10 works in Mobile Safari too. Has 14 streaming music stations and you can play your games while listening to it in the background.
  11. JonHimself macrumors 68000


    Nov 3, 2004
    Toronto, Ontario
    Can ootunes play Sirius? (Actual question, I don't mean "yeah well.. i bet it can't play sirius!") I remember looking at ootunes because it was like simplify media but also did video (which is what I want). Right now I'm using iPhone remote on my laptop to be able to access my video files but ootunes would be great. I'm holding off until I see if there will be background apps in 3.0 before doing anything (side note: I can really see Apple saying that the new iphone supports background apps because it has better hardware, but we've included an option to allow you to run 2 apps (just a random guess) at a time in the background on the previous versions of the iphone if you wan to though we dont recommend it)
  12. admanimal macrumors 68040

    Apr 22, 2005
    This actually doesn't require background processing at all. The stopwatch can just save the exact time of day that it was started on, and then if you quit the app and start it again it still can figure out how much time should be on the stopwatch based on the difference between the current time of day and the time of day that the stopwatch was started.
  13. Ding.Dong macrumors regular

    Jun 18, 2008
    Los Angeles
    True, but the timer and alarm will still go off at the correct time, even if it's not in the foreground.

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