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First iOS 4 Multitasking Aware Apps Appearing in App Store

Petey-ed

macrumors 6502
May 17, 2009
273
9
Tried it and it works pretty slick. Background uploading and downloading. Also the freeze state is nice! Good implementation!

I saw Fandango was updated for iOS 4 as well.
 
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dhy8386

macrumors 6502a
Aug 13, 2008
825
19
Petey-ed said:
Tried it and it works pretty slick. Background uploading and downloading. Also the freeze state is nice! Good implementation!

I saw Fandango was updated for iOS 4 as well.

I tried as well and when I switched from the app while it was uploading it did not continue to do so. It was paused. When i switched back to the app it continued uploading. I would have thought it could upload even while i was browsing for example.
 
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MacRumors

macrumors bot
Apr 12, 2001
50,386
11,759
First iOS 4 Multitasking Aware Apps Appearing in App Store

https://www.macrumors.com/images/macrumorsthreadlogodarkd.png




Apple has started approving updates for apps that support the new features of iOS 4. The most notable feature that requires explicit support is OS 4 multitasking. One particularly prominent app that now supports the basic iOS 4's multitasking API is Dropbox, a file sharing/syncing tool.

Apple's iOS has never supported multitasking in 3rd party applications. Apple has cited issues with performance and battery life as chief concerns with unrestricted multitasking. Instead, Apple has introduced 7 specific background services for IOS 4 apps that will allow them to continue tasks after a user switches away from them. These include:

- Background audio - Allows your app to play audio continuously.
- Voice over IP - Users can now receive VoIP calls and have conversations while using another app.
- Background location - Navigation apps can now continue to guide users who are using other apps
- Push notifications - Receive alerts from your remote servers even when your app isn't running.
- Local notifications - Your app can now alert users of scheduled events and alarms in the background, no servers required.
- Task finishing - If your app is in mid-task when your customer leaves it, the app can now keep running to finish the task.
- Fast app switching - This will allow users to leave your app and come right back to where they were when they left - no more having to reload the app.

The most noticeable change that should be implemented in every iOS 4 aware app is "Fast app switching" which allows you to switch in and out of an application without restarting the app. Dropbox appears to support this feature. Critics will correctly point out that this isn't really multitasking, but it's just a start of the support of the new iOS features. More impressive uses of the multitaking API will include apps such as Pandora Radio and Skype.

Apple will be distributing iOS 4 to the public on June 21st.

Article Link: First iOS 4 Multitasking Aware Apps Appearing in App Store
 
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FtrV8

macrumors regular
Sep 16, 2009
227
96
Hope the Android app Locale gets ported or some similar app for setting changes based on location come to the iPhone now.
 
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Rayfire

macrumors 68030
Aug 25, 2008
2,563
128
PNW
Can't wait to try iOS4 on the iPhone 3GS, then a few days later.. iPhone 4 ;)
 
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kjs862

macrumors 65816
Jan 21, 2004
1,297
24
Will I be able to keep an application like Meebo open and receive IMs?
 
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Voidness

macrumors 6502a
Aug 2, 2005
847
65
Null
So far Dropbox seems to only support "fast app switching", which is automatically supported by all applications targeted at iOS 4. Developers don't have to do anything except recompile their applications.
 
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travishill

macrumors regular
Jan 6, 2004
127
0
Will I be able to keep an application like Meebo open and receive IMs?

No, leaving an application completely running on a network for an indefinite amount of time is exactly the kind of battery-hungry usage Apple is trying to avoid.

Apple's recommendation is still for developers to use push notifications for instant messaging applications- that way there isn't constant network and application activity...
 
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kjs862

macrumors 65816
Jan 21, 2004
1,297
24
No, leaving an application completely running on a network for an indefinite amount of time is exactly the kind of battery-hungry usage Apple is trying to avoid.

Apple's recommendation is still for developers to use push notifications for instant messaging applications- that way there isn't constant network and application activity...

Thanks, I wish this wasn't the case.
 
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wschutz

macrumors 6502
Jun 5, 2007
292
90
Will I be able to keep an application like Meebo open and receive IMs?

It doesn't look like... this "multi-tasking" is not multi-tasking... it's just those services that can be started in parallel, that's all...
If Meebo doesn't already have push notifications... that's the most you can get... the other (allowed) background tasks don't seem suitable for it. The closest, "fast app switching", I'm sure it will be implemented, but I'm also sure that Apple has done it so that the app can't do anything else, just saving whatever data is necessary on memory and getting it back.

Apple doesn't want to provide with true multi-tasking, otherwise the battery wouldn't last an hour... hence... no marketing and bla bla bla...
It is easy to spot that all those services don't drain much battery, and that's why I'm surprised Apple sells this multitasking as innovative...
 
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travishill

macrumors regular
Jan 6, 2004
127
0
Thanks, I wish this wasn't the case.

I think push notifications themselves are a good idea to save device battery life instead of having apps running in the background and using the network all of the time.

But- I sure do wish they'd improve the notifications system in general. Interrupting pop-ups just don't scale if you've got a lot of em coming your way...
 
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jasonforisrael

macrumors regular
Jan 8, 2008
215
0
No, leaving an application completely running on a network for an indefinite amount of time is exactly the kind of battery-hungry usage Apple is trying to avoid.

Apple's recommendation is still for developers to use push notifications for instant messaging applications- that way there isn't constant network and application activity...

This is precisely what they said Pandora CAN do. They said you will be able to browse the internet or use other apps while Pandora continues to play music. In order to play music from Pandora it must remain connected indefinitely to the Pandora server, why would instant messaging apps be any different?
 
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AHDuke99

macrumors 68020
Nov 14, 2002
2,211
31
Charleston, SC
This is definitely the first one I've seen. It works as advertised. Fandango isn't compatible yet even though it said it was updated to work with iOS 4. I hope Beejive comes soon.
 
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infectbda

macrumors member
Jul 19, 2004
96
0
This is precisely what they said Pandora CAN do. They said you will be able to browse the internet or use other apps while Pandora continues to play music. In order to play music from Pandora it must remain connected indefinitely to the Pandora server, why would instant messaging apps be any different?

Apple wrote a specific targeted API for dealing with background audio. They don't have one for IM (although they do for VoIP). I think push notifications is the better way to implement IM. You would absolutely notice a battery hit if your phone had to open another persistant connection to a third-party IM server.

It's multitasking in a very limited and targeted way. It's not perfect, but it's really close, and protects your battery and CPU. I imagine iOS 5 will build on this support (but really, push is the way to go for apps like this).
 
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travishill

macrumors regular
Jan 6, 2004
127
0
This is precisely what they said Pandora CAN do. They said you will be able to browse the internet or use other apps while Pandora continues to play music. In order to play music from Pandora it must remain connected indefinitely to the Pandora server, why would instant messaging apps be any different?

I'm guessing simply because you *can* implement instant messaging without requiring constant network activity by setting up the push notification infrastructure- there's just no other way to do Pandora in the background besides letting it go (and suck up more power).

So they only permit that kind of background stuff while audio is playing- as soon as the audio output stops, the background processing can stop.
 
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Voidness

macrumors 6502a
Aug 2, 2005
847
65
Null
Although I still haven't looked into it, I think IM applications might be able to take advantage of the "Task Completion" service. Task completion allows applications to continue processing in the background for up to 10 minutes. An IM application can use task completion to maintain a connection with the server for up to 10 minutes. This way, it doesn't have to reestablish a connection to the server every time the user switches to another application for a few moments.

A question for developers who looked into this: Is this possible?

Edit: Just to make myself clear, I agree that Push Notifications is here to stay. The task completion scenario I mentioned is just a solution for avoiding reestablishing a connection every time a user switches to another application momentarily.
 
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BillyJ

macrumors newbie
Mar 24, 2009
13
0
Multiple Tasks

It doesn't look like... this "multi-tasking" is not multi-tasking... it's just those services that can be started in parallel, that's all...

Apple doesn't want to provide with true multi-tasking, otherwise the battery wouldn't last an hour... hence... no marketing and bla bla bla...
It is easy to spot that all those services don't drain much battery, and that's why I'm surprised Apple sells this multitasking as innovative...

Multi-tasking means...running multiple tasks. Truly. Other terms like "inter-application communication" and "pre-emptive multi-tasking", et. al. may need to be applied for this conversation to make sense.

I'm hoping for Dragon Dictation to get into the game, so I can create text messages by voice (without cut and paste). This would be great for when you're driving. ;-)
 
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bb147

macrumors member
May 21, 2010
30
9
Nice!

Can't wait. Hopefully more apps will get released soon!

ooTunes, Navigon, Skype would be nice this week ;)
 
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Thex1138

macrumors 6502a
Mar 17, 2009
990
0
Sydney, Australia
Saves Battery

Regardless of how people view this multi-tasking as true or false... if it saves my battery while I am able to switch between tasks... Then I am happy.
:D
 
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Small White Car

macrumors G4
Aug 29, 2006
10,925
1,234
Washington DC
I know people are just gonna read this article and say 'uh huh' without really thinking about it...so it needs to be said again:

If you have an iPhone and don't have Dropbox you are being a dope! GET IT NOW!
 
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retroneo

macrumors 6502a
Apr 22, 2005
720
92
iOS 4 didn't just freeze it and unfreeze it for me at all.

It saves a decent amount of state on relaunch as it always did in OS 3.x state but doesn't remember the scroll position.
 
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