What you need to know
- Google and Samsung have announced a partnership aimed at fixing background app issues on Android.
- Google promises to reduce instances of apps being killed in the background starting with Android 14.
- Samsung is the first Android OEM to join Google’s new effort.
Google is working with Android device makers to prevent apps from being killed randomly in the background, and Samsung is the first company to get involved, with Galaxy phone owners expected to reap the benefits of this partnership when One UI 6.0 hits the market. base of Android 14 coming later this year.
The partnership aims to address one of the long-standing annoyances with Android, namely its “restrictions on foreground services and background work” across devices, Google said in a blog post (opens in new tab). Google will ensure that the background APIs in Android 14 are implemented consistently across all devices.
Currently, makers of the leading Android phones like Samsung are often aggressive in killing background apps to optimize system performance and extend battery life. That’s because even when an app is not in use, it can consume system resources like memory and battery life when running in the background. This can cause the device to slow down and drain the battery, resulting in a poor user experience.
By killing background apps, smartphone manufacturers can free up battery power and extend the battery life of their devices. However, there are some drawbacks to it. For example, if an app is running in the background to provide a service, such as syncing your contacts or downloading new emails, killing the app will stop that service.
Google says its “partnerships with hardware manufacturers and these changes will make it easier for developers to create apps that work consistently across Android devices.”
Android 14 minimizes instances of background app restrictions by making it easier for developers to declare foreground service types and request type-specific permissions. This will help clarify when it’s appropriate to use foreground services and ensure apps are only restricted when they’re not required. Google Play will also implement new policies to ensure proper use of foreground services and user-initiated data transfer tasks.
Google and its partners hope to ease user frustration by ensuring that background apps behave consistently across devices.