Discussion in 'iPad' started by Merax, Jan 27, 2010.

  1. Merax macrumors newbie

    Jan 27, 2010
    I've been reading complaint after complaint about the lack of multitasking today but the only explanation I've seen anyone offer is battery life. Here are some other possible reasons Apple decided against Multitasking:

    1) Performance. Watching some of the hands-on videos, I notice that users are hyper with touch input - if the device does not respond immediately to a touch, they try it again and the new touch gets queued up and causes unexpected results. Even fast fade effects seem cause this reaction. Apple is trying to sell an experience with this device that includes a predictably fast and smooth interface at all times. They can't do that when users are trying to play 3 HD movies while surfing the web.

    2) Memory. The iPad has a limited amount of RAM and the OS probably doesn't support virtual memory (again to make performance predictable). When running solo, apps can be assured of access to a certain amount of memory. With multitasking the amount of memory available to an app is unpredictable. Once you allow people to run multiple apps at once they'll be wanting to expand their RAM and overclock their machines. This is not what Apple wants in this device.

    3) Security. Having only one user application running at once eliminates the possibility of malicious user-space programs running unknown in the background.

    Although I can understand the desire to have multitasking I can also understand why Apple would decide not to include that feature in their touch devices.
  2. Palm Pimp macrumors regular

    Palm Pimp

    Jan 8, 2009
    Are you freaking serious?

    1 and 2 just tell me that it can't multitask due to lack of memory and performance, which means it's a piece of crap.
    3, I don't think ANYONE will defend you there. I mean, you must HATE every single Macbook and Mac laptop, not to mention Macs and PCs in general cause they can multitask.

    Sorry buddy.
  3. MistaBungle macrumors 6502a


    Apr 3, 2005
    We've (iPhone OS community, not me) been crying for multitasking. Why would they not put it in there? You'd think it would be a design feature since Day 1.

    I also have a tough time agreeing with your argument.
  4. iCheddar macrumors 6502a


    Apr 30, 2007
    South Dakota
    I disagree with this. At least when it comes to users who've had the device for a while. As a practical example, I'm still using the original iPhone (AT&T doesn't sell service in the midwest, so I'm unlocked on a MVTO), and I'm fully aware of its performance shortcomings. So I've got a certain rhythm with the device. I know when I click this, that happens in a certain amount of time.

    As far as multitasking goes, I don't think users want to go crazy and be running a zillion apps at a time, but the ability to juggle Safari, Pandora, and a chat client at one time would be common, and doable.
  5. Merax thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 27, 2010
    In the real world making something like this involves trade-offs. You can't just stamp your boots on the ground and cry until you get everything you want.

    The relatively weak CPU allows you to make a slim yet responsive device with 10 hour battery life and no fans for $500.

    What would you like to give up for general multitasking? Leave hardware as-is and allow out of memory errors and degrading performance? Include faster hardware and take the associated increases in price, heat, and size?

    Hmm, maybe you could do a form of multitasking without making hardware compromises by rating each app based on the system resources it uses - then you could keep opening new ones as long as the total memory/cpu/etc ratings are under the limit. That would allow you to run several lightweight apps like you described but just one movie player or 3d game. I guess the trade-off there would be the loss of some simplicity in the user interface.
  6. Jpoon macrumors 6502a


    Feb 26, 2008
    Los Angeles California
    The majority of the users out there are less than intelligent. Apple has to make the experience simple enough for dumb people first.

    If the experience is to be kept at "It just works," then they have to solve the problem of dumb people trying to push a device to its limits.

    Because there would be some idiot trying to run Pandora, queue a YouTube video and not close the application out, try and Shazam something *leave that open* and then try and GPS something while running several Safari pages at the same time *God forbid they had flash elements running on them*.

    So there's concrete and real reasons for no multitasking immediately. I'd like to think that they're actively working on it. Because to me, that's the biggest problem right now. It's the biggest thing separating the iPhone / iPod Touch / iPad from a full desktop browsing experience. You can have a browser window open with stuff in the background. And it's not just iTunes :p
  7. VPrime macrumors 68000


    Dec 19, 2008
    London Ontario
    Multi tasking is key to a computer. A cellphone can getaway with it.. but a computer that is supposed to be better than a netbook (Steve jobs said "Netbooks aren't better at any thing") it is just crazy.

    There are netbooks that have FULL operating systems that allow multi tasking, flash.. and what ever else that have 10hr battery life. These same netbooks often have 1ghz cpus.

    There is no logical reason to NOT have multi-tasking.

    We have had multi tasking on computers for YEARS! I remember my 100mhz computer running windows 3.1 had multi tasking!
    1GHZ is powerful. Less than 10 years ago the average computer was only 1ghz!

    I think not including multi-tasking in a device like this is a major downfall and a huge limitation.

    Plus I personally see this as a hint to the next iPhone/os 4.0. If apple can't be bothered to include multit asking on a computer, why would they even bother on a cell phone.. Which stinks.
  8. Merax thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 27, 2010
    Exactly Jpoon, and the next step after opening all of those apps and seeing the performance go downhill would be:
    a) Declare that it's crap and complain loudly about it (see 2nd post here)
    b) Call tech support about it
    c) Return it

    I'd like multitasking too, of course, I'm just saying I think I understand why they didn't include it on this particular device given the constraints and the market they're targeting.
  9. bozzykid macrumors 68020

    Aug 11, 2009
    There's no multitasking because Apple stuck 3.x of the iPod Touch software on it and added a few tweaks for the popup menus. I suspect Apple will announce 4.0 in March with a Summer release that will bring multitasking to the iPad and the new iPhone (and possibly older phones).
  10. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    The thing here is, this it not a computer in the truest sense. Its a iPod touch on steroids. Its OS and UI are designed for single tasking. I'm not defending apple insomuch as stating a fact.
  11. rasmasyean macrumors 6502a

    Jul 11, 2008
    Actually some phones have multitasking. Windows Mobile phones are known for their multi-tasking ability. Though this feature also makes them known for being slow as hell without the lastest greatest phone that costs hundreds of more dollars. Even then, you will run into limits shortly.

    I think they left out multi-tasking because otherwise, the touch and responsiveness would make it a pain and the iButt to use. It would then suck really bad that many of the apps would no longer work right.
  12. bozzykid macrumors 68020

    Aug 11, 2009
    Hopefully 4.0 will make better use of the iPad's hardware and differentiate itself from the touch. My guess is we will not see much in the way of differentiation until 4.0.
  13. Chaos123x macrumors 68000

    Jul 8, 2008
    It does not have multitasking because it's not a full fledged computer.

    It's just a iPhone XL.
  14. iCheddar macrumors 6502a


    Apr 30, 2007
    South Dakota
    I disagree. People are getting too hung up on the numbers for the specs, and fact that it currently runs iPhone OS.

    I think its that 1ghz barrier. There are MANY ultra-low-voltage chips like the A4 running in notebooks, except that they run 2-300mhz faster.

    The iPad IS a computer. Its a netbook that isn't a netbook. The only problem is, its running the wrong OS.
  15. coolbreeze macrumors 68000


    Jan 20, 2003
    No multitasking b/c it's not a computer. It's a large iPod Touch.

    Just to piss off Amazon, AAPL should have named it iPod DX.

    Hee hee.
  16. lionheartednyhc macrumors 65816


    Jul 13, 2009
    My 3GS' battery life and performance is great even though I have multiple apps running. So your saying the specs for the ipad are worse?

    Thank god apple is protecting us from evil programs.
  17. gusto5 macrumors member

    Mar 24, 2006
    And this is a possible reason to why the iPad won't have multitouch (yet). Perhaps this will be the next $9.99 update ;D
  18. Looper121 macrumors newbie

    Oct 7, 2009
    It's not a computer so I wouldn't expect it to multitask. If you want to multitask, bring your mb or mbp with you. I have no idea why so many people are up in arms about this. It's half as much as a mb and people think it should do everything a laptop should do AND your iPhone. One of the first slides Steve presented was an iPhone and a mbp. In the middle is this...once developers get hold if this, there are going to be some great apps I bet, ones that don't translate onto an iPhone. Admit it some of the games on an iPhone are a joke but would be great once adapted to the iPad. iWork, even dumbed down a bit-is huge for the productivity crowd. This would never fly on an iPhone. iBooks, again, much better on an iPad. Reading books on an iPhone is nice, but again, it's not exaclty appealing...I admit, I wish there was a USB hub, and it had a camera for iChat or whatever, but I bet the next time around these will be included.

    I wish people would lighten up some, this is the first step and I think down the road people are going to be happy with this new idea/product.
  19. Airforce macrumors 6502a


    Jan 12, 2006
    The complaints I see and am tossing out myself seem to be the same. This is still a device that relies on another device. I mean, it really is just an iPhone with a bigger screen and different processor. Nothing really new. The only way it should evolve from here is to actual laptop grade processors, modified OS X with full software compatibility, and external connectivity(usb at the least). I think that is what we all really want.
  20. fatbarstewar macrumors member

    Feb 21, 2009

    Each to their own, but the lack of flash and iSight is no big deal for me - Ive never used iSight once on any of my macs, bar for my profile pic.

    Multitasking though, ouch. However, Im absolutely positive this will come with 4.0 coinciding with the next iPhone launch. Doesn't take any great foresight that it will be enabled on 3GS and up - 3G and original will go without. Suits me, I'll be upgrading my 3G for the next iPhone.

    Arguing that you can only do one thing at a time, so multitasking is not important, is missing the point. Leaving aside messenger etc, constantly having to reload apps is a pain - outside of the insta load of Safari and mail, gah! Forgivable on a phone, not so on something as relatively powerful as the iPad.

    I, for example, use the Guardian and Eurogamer app constantly, both of which take a bit of a load, plus the mail and text app obviously. An expose facility would be priceless.
  21. iWoz macrumors 6502a


    Jan 12, 2009
    East Midlands, U.K
    I presume multitasking will be available at some stage this year via a software update? I wont purchase an iPad until Apple clarify this. You cant listen to music whilst sending an email?
  22. Paul B macrumors 6502

    Sep 13, 2007
    If Apple doesn't offer it, a 3rd party source will.
  23. yawa macrumors member

    Jun 12, 2009
    Correct me if im wrong...but on the iphone you can listen to music and do other things?
  24. iWoz macrumors 6502a


    Jan 12, 2009
    East Midlands, U.K

    But does this work in the same way?

    I guess you would of thought so
  25. yawa macrumors member

    Jun 12, 2009
    I presume so as its using the iPhone OS. But im not 100% sure.

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