Helping your parents with their iPhone is the bane of your existence. They can’t figure out FaceTime, they expect you to know all of their passwords, and, of course, they never quit their apps. After all, swiping up on your apps is the best way to make sure your iPhone runs fast and uses less battery, right? Actually, no. You’re wrong, and your parents are right to keep their apps open all the damn time.
It’s not your fault if you think otherwise. Apple doesn’t tell you when setting up your iPhone that there’s no need to quit your apps. It’s a common belief, and one that makes sense in theory. If it’s how you’ve used your iPhone all this time, then stumbling upon a TikTok from someone like carterpcs telling you not to quit your apps might seem like TechTok misinformation (of which there is plenty on the platform). But he’s 100% right:
It might seem counterintuitive, but quitting your apps actually makes your iPhone experience worse. When you quit an app, iOS has to completely reopen it the next time you want to use it, which uses more processing power and battery. If you leave it alone, the app will either already be open in the background, ready to go, or “suspended,” which means it isn’t “open,” but it isn’t entirely shut down, either.
Apple designed multitasking to work best when you don’t intervene. Your iPhone will suspend apps as necessary to allocate memory to other apps and tasks. That’s why sometimes an app you’ve used before is still ready to go, while, other times, it needs to refresh. But refreshing an app is less intensive than opening it for the first time, making things easier on the processor, the battery, and you.
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The idea here is to balance everything. Your iPhone wants to keep the apps it can handle completely open, while, at the same time, suspending apps that wouldn’t fit. It knows how to do this better than you do, so it’s best to let the system handle it. Plus, you can’t suspend apps, only close them completely.
That’s not to say quitting apps is something to avoid at all costs. You should swipe up on an app whenever it acts up, freezes, or otherwise stops behaving normally. If Messages won’t stop glitching out, or Instagram won’t load your DMs, a force quit is often the fix you need.
However, as long as your apps are performing as expected, leave them alone. It’s satisfying to clean up your iPhone, but it’s not actually helpful beyond aesthetics. If you care about your iPhone running at full speed while stretching its battery as far as possible, do like your parents do: Don’t quit your apps.
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