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Apple's iPhone Software 4.0 multitasking feature demoed in video

post #1 of 32
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Apple on Thursday said that this summer's iPhone Software 4.0 release will include long-awaited support for multitasking, which can be seen in action via the following video. [Updated with walk-through video].

In order to deliver multitasking without incurring a performance hit in battery life, the iPhone maker said it has created seven different multitasking services for developers, each tuned to solve different multitasking scenarios.

Among them are Background Audio, Voice over IP, Background location, Push notifications, Local notifications, Task completion, and Fast app switching.

When combined with Apple's Dashboard-like user-facing interface for fast app switching, the end result is what can be seen from the below video of an iPhone 3GS running the first external beta of iPhone Software 4.0:



A more extensive walk-through of the iPhone Software 4.0:

post #2 of 32
I think many people are already using double home for things like camera or iTunes control. I use the later and I like having the immediate access to cut the audio as quickly as possible when necessary.

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post #3 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by mstone View Post

I think many people are already using double home for things like camera or iTunes control. I use the later and I like having the immediate access to cut the audio as quickly as possible when necessary.

Yeah, I was wondering the same thing. Would this be just another option to the current setting or would it replace the Settings > General > Home setting altogether.
post #4 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by mstone View Post

I think many people are already using double home for things like camera or iTunes control. I use the later and I like having the immediate access to cut the audio as quickly as possible when necessary.

Yeah, I hope they provide another way to control iTunes without opening the App.
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post #5 of 32
Phewww, I was afraid it was going to be a deck-of-cards-like interface employed on Palm's WebOS.

Looks pretty snazzy!
post #6 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by JupiterOne View Post

Yeah, I was wondering the same thing. Would this be just another option to the current setting or would it replace the Settings > General > Home setting altogether.

Is long key press reserved?
post #7 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by chronster View Post

Is long key press reserved?


Yes Voice control

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post #8 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by mstone View Post

Yes Voice control

hrmmmmm.

yeap, guess it's gonna take the place of everyone's shortcut key. Unless triple click comes in to play

But then again, how often does the average user make use of the voice control function? I got rid of my voice control shortcut key on my TP2 in favor of a task manager (for easy switching and closing of apps )
post #9 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by chronster View Post

hrmmmmm.

yeap, guess it's gonna take the place of everyone's shortcut key. Unless triple click comes in to play

As someone said it will be like Morse Code.

.-. . .- .-.. .-.. -.-- + -.. ..- -- -...

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post #10 of 32
How did this person get access to 4.0 so quickly? Or is the latest beta firmware included with the SDK?
post #11 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by MsNly View Post

Yeah, I hope they provide another way to control iTunes without opening the App.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JupiterOne View Post

Yeah, I was wondering the same thing. Would this be just another option to the current setting or would it replace the Settings > General > Home setting altogether.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mstone View Post

I think many people are already using double home for things like camera or iTunes control. I use the later and I like having the immediate access to cut the audio as quickly as possible when necessary.

Erm... iPhone OS 4.0 = multitasking????

This should solve the need for shortcut access to iPod functions - at least that's how I think Apple is viewing this multitasking functionality and why they've (possibly) overridden the 'double tap' option???? \
post #12 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by gearhunter View Post

Erm... iPhone OS 4.0 = multitasking????

This should solve the need for shortcut access to iPod functions - at least that's how I think Apple is viewing this multitasking functionality and why they've (possibly) overridden the 'double tap' option???? \

Exactly what I was thinking.

It will be a shame to lose the ability to quickly change to a new song with only a double click and a tap but I would personally choose multitasking over it any day.
post #13 of 32
Multitasking or not, it'll now take at least two taps, and several taps in the worst case (when the iPod app's current state is inside some menu).

They might add iPod controls above the multitask icons in another beta.
post #14 of 32
I still don't understand how this works. So lets say I want to open Skype and Mail what do I do? Run Skype and afterwards? Hit homebutton and afterwards open up Mail? Now lets say I have Skype, Mail and Safari up and running and now I just want to quit Safari because I don't need it anymore. I know I can navigate between them with double tab on Home but how do I specifically quit Safari? Maybe slide it of the Dock or something (would be Mac like sort of)?

Does Skype show up in the Dock when it only uses the VOIP Voice Protocol? (I know that probably nobody can answer that yet)
post #15 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by foobar View Post

Multitasking or not, it'll now take at least two taps, and several taps in the worst case (when the iPod app's current state is inside some menu).

They might add iPod controls above the multitask icons in another beta.

Yeah that would work well actually seeing as the video shows that about 4/5 of the screen is wasted.
post #16 of 32
I was really hoping for proper multi-tasking, not just glorified app switching. Why can't I run a twitter or IM feed in the background Apple, you know, like you can do with Android?

And why no widgets?
post #17 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by jonnyinscotland View Post

Exactly what I was thinking.

It will be a shame to lose the ability to quickly change to a new song with only a double click and a tap but I would personally choose multitasking over it any day.

I thought I read that Pandora will allow you to change songs using the "ipod control pop up." Maybe I was mistaken, or they've found another way to do it.
post #18 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by PatsFan83 View Post

I thought I read that Pandora will allow you to change songs using the "ipod control pop up." Maybe I was mistaken, or they've found another way to do it.

I think it means from the lock screen.
post #19 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by jpcg View Post

I still don't understand how this works. So lets say I want to open Skype and Mail what do I do? Run Skype and afterwards? Hit homebutton and afterwards open up Mail? Now lets say I have Skype, Mail and Safari up and running and now I just want to quit Safari because I don't need it anymore. I know I can navigate between them with double tab on Home but how do I specifically quit Safari? Maybe slide it of the Dock or something (would be Mac like sort of)?

Scott Forstall said in the iPone OS 4.0 keynote Q&A that there's no need for users to close Apps as the OS will take care of it. Something akin to OS X: Apps that are open but aren't being used lie dormant but remain alert at the same time.
post #20 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by kotatsu View Post

I was really hoping for proper multi-tasking, not just glorified app switching. Why can't I run a twitter or IM feed in the background Apple, you know, like you can do with Android?

And why no widgets?

Proper multi-tasking...
Why don't you wait until v4.0 before you start complaining about how it doesn't work for you.
Or you can always marry Android if you love it so much.

Because iPhone apps are all widgets+
post #21 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by foobar View Post

Multitasking or not, it'll now take at least two taps, and several taps in the worst case (when the iPod app's current state is inside some menu).

They might add iPod controls above the multitask icons in another beta.

Deep breath, people.

Didn't I read that the wake screen in 4.0 will have iPod controls on it?

I know it's hard to resist judging the full functionality of features you learn about 3rd hand from a developer preview conference you weren't at.

"Control, control, you must learn control" - Yoda
post #22 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by mstone View Post

I think many people are already using double home for things like camera or iTunes control. I use the later and I like having the immediate access to cut the audio as quickly as possible when necessary.

Yeah, I do too. I'd prefer single tap to get to multi-task, double-tap for itunes and hold the button for longer than a tap to get to icon view (does anyone seriously use the Voice control that only understands a certain type of American accent?)

Quote:
Originally Posted by jpcg

I know I can navigate between them with double tab on Home but how do I specifically quit Safari? Maybe slide it of the Dock or something (would be Mac like sort of)?

The open application won't cause any problems until another app needs the RAM its using but the application switcher could end up getting quite clogged up with lots of low memory apps and require lots of swipes to get to the one you want. Also they won't be ordered so hard to train muscle memory. I think I'd have preferred a list view that scrolls with the names and icons of open apps and then swipe the name and close to kill an app.

It really isn't that difficult to understand a task manager like that. Still, it's not needed as going back to the icon view won't quit apps. If you go back to the icon view and select an app that's open, it will just open at its suspended state as it would from the launcher. The application launcher is actually a bit superfluous and the OS probably would have been less confusing without it.
post #23 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by kotatsu View Post

Why can't I run a twitter or IM feed in the background Apple, you know, like you can do with Android?

Because push notifications are better than continuous polling. "I want the stupid thing" is not a very compelling argument.
post #24 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by gearhunter View Post

Scott Forstall said in the iPone OS 4.0 keynote Q&A that there's no need for users to close Apps as the OS will take care of it. Something akin to OS X: Apps that are open but aren't being used lie dormant but remain alert at the same time.

But I would want Skype to be open *all* the time! Hopefully there will be some settings...
post #25 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by gearhunter View Post

Scott Forstall said in the iPone OS 4.0 keynote Q&A that there's no need for users to close Apps as the OS will take care of it. Something akin to OS X: Apps that are open but aren't being used lie dormant but remain alert at the same time.

The second video clip starting at 2 minutes and 18 seconds shows the quitting of apps.
post #26 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Extensor View Post

The second video clip starting at 2 minutes and 18 seconds shows the quitting of apps.

Yeah, it is funny how many posts there can be about something that was shown rather clearly in the video.
For those who don't want to watch the video, it showed the user holding a finger on an icon for one of the open apps for about a second. Only that app would then highlight with the familiar "x" and a short tap on the icon would close the app.
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post #27 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by oxygenhose View Post

Proper multi-tasking...
Why don't you wait until v4.0 before you start complaining about how it doesn't work for you.
Or you can always marry Android if you love it so much.

Because iPhone apps are all widgets+

You really don't understand what a widget is, do you?
post #28 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tomfoolery View Post

Because push notifications are better than continuous polling. "I want the stupid thing" is not a very compelling argument.

I really don't see how anyone could reach that conclusion.

Try a twitter client on the iPhone, then try one on Android. See the difference?
post #29 of 32
Unimaginably efficient investment as usual.
Almost nothing actually changes, just Apple's stuff already running in background becomes system-wide servers accessible from third parties. Third parties are allowed and welcomed to the party only because iAd is so and is gonna generate the cash flow.
And sexy-ass fans of Pandora are finally absolutely happy... That's what should be called big achievement.

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post #30 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Extensor View Post

The second video clip starting at 2 minutes and 18 seconds shows the quitting of apps.

Cool! Which video clip dude?
post #31 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by jonnyinscotland View Post

Exactly what I was thinking.

It will be a shame to lose the ability to quickly change to a new song with only a double click and a tap but I would personally choose multitasking over it any day.

Don't you guys use your iPhone with the headphones? I feel like the headphones are the most powerful accessory....Talking on the phone and websurfing are a breeze...and it's the easiest way to control music

Headphone controls:
1 tap pause/play
2 taps skip song
3 taps repeat song

I never use my iPhone without headphones. Perhaps one of the most important reasons to do this is that it keeps the headset away from your head. With the radiation debate on all mobile phones not settled yet it's just a good precaution.

So yeah, I'm psyched about this new double tap the home button to multitask, I think it makes a lot of sense.

Personally, I use voice control many times a day... It's a bit limiting for playing music, but I haven't opened up my contact list in ages...just so much faster... .

I'm SO psyched for all these new updates! THANK YOU APPLE!!
post #32 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by gearhunter View Post

Cool! Which video clip dude?

Here's a video clip of the multi-tasking:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FqfpEVITtrA

It shows closing the apps after 2:25. Interesting, that guy appears to have emails from Kasper.
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