Will Apple allow one or two 3rd party apps to run in the background?

Will Apple allow one or two 3rd party apps to run in the background?

Summary: As we approach the June WWDC event and the expectation that Apple will roll out iPhone OS 3.0 along with some possible new hardware, the rumors of what else may be in the OS update heat up. The latest speculation is that Apple will allow one or two 3rd party apps to run in the background. Currently, Apple lets you run the iPod music functions in the background, but no 3rd party apps have this capability. The servers side notification support coming in iPhone 3.0 may address the needs for some apps, such as IM apps, but there are still some others that would benefit from running in the background on the iPhone.

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As we approach the June WWDC event and the expectation that Apple will roll out iPhone OS 3.0 along with some possible new hardware, the rumors of what else may be in the OS update heat up. The latest speculation is that Apple will allow one or two 3rd party apps to run in the background. Currently, Apple lets you run the iPod music functions in the background, but no 3rd party apps have this capability. The servers side notification support coming in iPhone 3.0 may address the needs for some apps, such as IM apps, but there are still some others that would benefit from running in the background on the iPhone.

I think the most valuable type of application to run in the background for me is a streaming radio app like Pandora or imeem Mobile. I hate that I cannot enjoy streaming content while surfing in Safari, writing emails, or checking out Twitter or Facebook. Looking through the screens of apps I have loaded on my iPhone, if I had a second choice (assuming my IM client was working with the upcoming Apple server technology) I think it would be a Twitter or Facebook app to allow me to stay current with status and updates.

If you could have one or two apps running in the background on your iPhone, what would you choose?

Topics: Apps, Apple, iOS, iPhone, Mobile OS, Servers, Smartphones

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10 comments
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  • Will Apple allow........

    As soon as I read that headline, I got another reminder of why I avoid Apple products like the plague. If I buy it, it's mine and I will do with it as I please.
    Economister
  • RE: Will Apple allow one or two 3rd party apps to run in the background?

    Skype, yahoo messenger, and shoutcast radio
    marcusp500@...
  • Nokia S60

    Nokia fans enjoy the ability to run multiple apps in the background.

    The fact that you *cannot* have backgrounding of an application is probably the single worst strike against Apple for failure to meet minimum design standards.

    I typically leave several apps running in the background during the day on my N95,

    o Nokia Messaging (push e-mail)
    o fring

    By itself, fring is running Skype, AIM, MSN, SIP (VoIP), Google Talk, Twitter 2.0, WeFi and Last.fm

    Yep, you got it, Twitter and Last.fm over fring--in the background.

    And now with SkyFire web browser, iPhone has *nothing* on Nokia S60. Nothing.

    Ask me if I like SkyFire Matt. Go ahead. Just ask me. ;)
    no_zd_user_name
    • Windows Mobile

      Windows Mobile does the same except I think it does it even better.
      Especialy if you have a htc handset with the handy htc task manager app.
      I can leave 5 or 6 apps running in the background without any slow downs and switch between them with ease.
      Personaly I like Opera Mobile but then as far as im aware skyfire isnt available in the uk, atleast it wasnt when I checked last.
      jdbukis@...
      • SkyFire available now in the UK

        >Personaly I like Opera Mobile but then as far as im aware skyfire isnt available in the uk, atleast it wasnt when I checked last.

        SkyFire is now available in the UK.

        If you have difficulty getting it, let me know:
        www.dtschmitz.com
        no_zd_user_name
  • MLB Radio, NPR and xpn

    audio apps would be my favorite background vices. You
    already mentioned Pandors so I'll add National Public Radio,
    xpn radio (out of Philadelphia) and all the major league
    baseball games from MLB.com.
    ejstevens@...
  • Comments suggest most iPhone users have little to do.

    If Apple wants the iPhone to really catch on, you need more business apps. At the same time, most European data plans have low caps and cost a lot, especially when roaming. Also, this will burn battery life. My favourite is Bloomberg. Would be nice to have the WSJ and Skype.
    jorjitop
  • iPhone is iPhone

    Limited background task is benefit the overall stable

    iPhone is iPhone, there is no critical point on this. (If yes, why many people change to use iPhone from WM? is that iphone very cheap in price?)

    Like WM (I use many year ). It always has problem on Background task! Especially in very tough Mobile hardware. It make my phone hang every day.

    So,

    There is no need to compare with another platform on this too.

    On the other hand, Notification Services in coming 3.0 OS, it will satisfy large part of requirement to Background Task. (Like MSN, Skype ..etc)


    kevinet
  • Simplify Media and Pandora

    Agreed; this is a major pain when you want to answer texts and emails while you are listening to streaming music. This is top of the list for me.

    In fact, this could become an area of significant differentiation for other smartphone platforms such as WebOS and WM. Neither of these two OSs will stop playing music when you switch windows on their platforms.

    Simplify Media is the future of music. As the networks become more robust, there is no need to big storage on your phone. This also makes it alot easier to manage your music library.

    Next stop; connectivity to your Apple TV to stream movies when you are connected...
    dcristof
  • Apple once again plays catch up with Jailbreakers

    <gloat>"One or two" apps in the background? Ho-hum. I've been running as many as I want for months already with Backgrounder, available on Cydia for jailbroken iPhones. </gloat>
    mikekayb