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  • iPhone 4.0 Multitasking on iPhone 3G/iPod touch 2G


    The welcome announcement of multitasking support in iPhone 4.0 was muted by Steve Jobs throwing millions of iPod and iPhone users under the bus. "Their hardware can’t support it," Jobs said, adding "if that’s an incentive for them to upgrade to a new device… terrific..” Well thanks, Steve. Imposing high minimum system requirements for OS upgrades are nothing new, but saying that "hardware can't support" what it can clearly (if slowly) support seems a little... well "disingenuous" is a kind word for it.

    Turns out that older iPhones and iPod touch devices can, of course, support iPhone OS 4.0 multitasking. The switch to enable or disable multitasking was found last week by Will Strafach (@cdevwill), the guy who tweeted the picture of the iPad running Cydia. Apparently one of the properties in the capabilities plist of springboard.app (/System/Library/CoreService/SpringBoard.app/N82AP.plist) is MULTITASKING=FALSE. Change that to TRUE, according to Will, and you're all set.

    Sure, it'll probably crawl. But why not let users decide whether or not they want to enable it? Although if Apple wants to continue to encourage jailbreaking by locking down the features of the OS, that's fine with us...
    This article was originally published in forum thread: iPhone 4.0 Multitasking on iPhone 3G/iPod touch 2G started by Paul Daniel Ash View original post
    Comments 79 Comments
    1. plcrules's Avatar
      plcrules -
      but steve was right the hardware doesnt support it u can only run 2-3 lightweight apps at once

      does any1 no if its possible 2 port proswitcher into the built in multi tasking just for the UI?
    1. moon#pie's Avatar
      moon#pie -
      cool! will be checking this out when I jailbreak 4.0b1
    1. daching's Avatar
      daching -
      I wouldn't want to multitask on my 3G. Seriously, it can't even handle a game with lagging.
    1. goodgod2's Avatar
      goodgod2 -
      Quote Originally Posted by daching View Post
      I wouldn't want to multitask on my 3G. Seriously, it can't even handle a game with lagging.
      That the point if you a 2g/3g...if you don't want it then don't use it...it is understandable that it will be slow if you background a lot heavy app, but at least give people the option to choose. That why apple gave the dumb *** excuse as the " hardware can't support it".
    1. trek-life's Avatar
      trek-life -
      I honestly don't get too much if any lag on my 3g while multitasking with mquickdo. I'm sure it doesn't run as smoothly as the 3GS but it hasn't caused me to be frustrated. I'd imagine that native multitasking would run even better.

      That being said I may try to grab a used 3GS soon. I just don't want to deal with a tethered Jailbreak since I travel a lot.
    1. Skandocious's Avatar
      Skandocious -
      I think everyone is taking Steve's answer much too literally... Yeah I suppose the 3G can multitask, but just as the article says it'll probably be slow. Apple would never encourage users to use a feature if it made the device slow and gross-- they price themselves on smooth and sexy UI's.

      That being said-- if I'm not mistaken, doesnt the multitasking feature do most of the work automatically? If users enable it on their 3G iPhones, are they really going to be able to "choose" whether or not they want to use multitasking? Someone asked Steve about how you close running apps and he said something to the effect of "you'll never have to worry about it." To me, that means that the user is not choosing when to send things to the background and when to close them (like you would with Backgrounder or ProSwitcher). It sounds like the OS does it for you.

      Can someone using the beta on a 3GS or ipt3g confirm this? Do you manually send apps to the background or does the OS just keep recently used apps running or "frozen" in the background?
    1. adp's Avatar
      adp -
      True, I can multitask small ram-required applications like SMS and radio. Anything over that causes the mail/phone apps to shut down and eventually everything stops. But giving the choice is what we need, although I'm sure Apple will patch this somehow. All I can say is I love Kirikae
    1. goodgod2's Avatar
      goodgod2 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Skandocious View Post
      I think everyone is taking Steve's answer much too literally... Yeah I suppose the 3G can multitask, but just as the article says it'll probably be slow. Apple would never encourage users to use a feature if it made the device slow and gross-- they price themselves on smooth and sexy UI's.

      That being said-- if I'm not mistaken, doesnt the multitasking feature do most of the work automatically? If users enable it on their 3G iPhones, are they really going to be able to "choose" whether or not they want to use multitasking? Someone asked Steve about how you close running apps and he said something to the effect of "you'll never have to worry about it." To me, that means that the user is not choosing when to send things to the background and when to close them (like you would with Backgrounder or ProSwitcher). It sounds like the OS does it for you.

      Can someone using the beta on a 3GS or ipt3g confirm this? Do you manually send apps to the background or does the OS just keep recently used apps running or "frozen" in the background?
      Steve said" if a background app has a task manager, then it a fail" but iphone O.S beta 4.0 has an manager. This is the beta, so i dont know about the complete one.

      if you hold the background app icon (by holding the icon till it shake and there will be an X for you to close it) saw this on Youtube dont know if it true or not.
    1. Skandocious's Avatar
      Skandocious -
      Quote Originally Posted by goodgod2 View Post
      Steve said" if a background app has a task manager, then it a fail" but iphone O.S beta 4.0 has an manager. This is the beta, so i dont know about the complete one.

      if you hold the background app icon (by holding the icon till it shake and there will be an X for you to close it) saw this on Youtube dont know if it true or not.
      Yeah I saw all of that. But do you have to explicitly send items to the background in the first place? If so, I'm kind of disappointed. I would expect Apple to make a good implementation of some algorithm that send apps to the background and lets them run until resources are needed at which point it would "freeze" them and store them in memory until the next time you use them. That way you'd never have to manually send and app to the background (ala, Backgrounder) nor would you have to worry about closing anything via a Task Manager. I don't use Backgrounder very much for this exact reason-- it's too much work keeping track of everything that is running and closing things manually. I only use Backgrounder for streaming music with Pandora (and for that I actually use Music Controls).

      Yeah the Task Manger is there but I think Steve's point was that you would seldom ever have to use it because they've designed it correctly.

      Someone please correct me if I'm wrong-- I've not gotten a chance to play with OS 4.0 yet.
    1. mudrock1000's Avatar
      mudrock1000 -
      I disagree. My gf's 2nd gen iTouch uses the same effing multi task my itouch does and it functions just fine (She doesn't need it, I just did it once to prove a point)

      Anyways I don't see why. There are phones weaker than the iPhone 3g that are multi tasking. I think apple is just being lazy or want you to buy the new iphone.
    1. zozodouce's Avatar
      zozodouce -
      Who cares,people still use the 3G still hahahahah.
    1. yahoowizard's Avatar
      yahoowizard -
      I'm guessing this might be possible for the 2G yet still epically fail?
    1. evolasme's Avatar
      evolasme -
      All i really want is an Untethered jailbreak... seems to me all 4.0 is minus maybe game store thing or what ever it is. is a jailBroken 3.1.2. every thing it seems there touting is already avalible via Cydia in one form or another... tethard jailbreak and i think im good...
    1. Zeal's Avatar
      Zeal -
      Battery issue.
    1. klouud's Avatar
      klouud -
      Quote Originally Posted by daching View Post
      I wouldn't want to multitask on my 3G. Seriously, it can't even handle a game with lagging.
      Yeah... I loaded Eliminate Up on my Brother-in-Law's 3G and could not even rotate his character in the menu screen without lag! The hardware jump from 3G to 3GS is absolutely amazing!

      but I agree... let the user decide whether or not they want the features enabled or disabled.
    1. dsg's Avatar
      dsg -
      am I missing something

      the way iPhone 4.0 backgrounds means it wouldn't/shouldn't be Battery or processor intensive

      Edit: watch the keynote where Scott Forstall explains it it's around 00:16:09
    1. roeiboot's Avatar
      roeiboot -
      unable to SSH into it
      only default (that came with the iPhone) wallpapers work for only the lockscreen..
      folders is really cool.

      (ps. while browsing pics the iPhone rebooted twice (to be expected, it's a beta)
    1. GregTheWang's Avatar
      GregTheWang -
      ok if an app runs slow becase of backgrounding on a phone don't flip out... just think of how much time we spend waiting for our computers loading something for a sec. I've gotten spinning beachballs on microsoft word for longer times than waiting for phone.app to load while backgrounding both cydia and rock on my 3G.
    1. SquareWheel's Avatar
      SquareWheel -
      If my first gen iPod Touch can multitask, then your second gen devices can manage it just fine. Especially when the 4.x multitasking is more efficient than just holding all apps in memory.
    1. sziklassy's Avatar
      sziklassy -
      Quote Originally Posted by goodgod2 View Post
      That the point if you a 2g/3g...if you don't want it then don't use it...it is understandable that it will be slow if you background a lot heavy app, but at least give people the option to choose. That why apple gave the dumb *** excuse as the " hardware can't support it".
      This is one instance where I agree with Apple not giving the choice. Idiots who don't know better will complain and their tech support will be flooded with "my 3G crashed while multitasking". The problem with making an ultra easy to use UI and product is it attracts people who don't know wtf they are doing.