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Close apps on Android devices



Samsung Galaxy S9 One UI review apps

When you exit an app on your Android device, the app doesn’t actually close. Instead, the app will just run in the background in case you need to open it again soon. You need to know how to close apps on your Android device to improve the speed of your phone and give the memory a breather.

Apps running in the background resemble a window that is minimized on your computer. When you minimize a window on a computer, you don’t close it completely; the only way you can completely close a window on the computer is to press the X in the top right corner. So how do you completely close the apps on your phone?

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Close apps on Android

There are two different ways to close apps on Android. And each method has a different purpose.

There is a way to simply close your apps so that they stop using your phone’s memory as often. Your phone will usually run faster and your battery will drain more slowly as a result of closing your apps this way.

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Then there is another way you can close your apps via the app manager; this is called force closing or force quitting an app. You should only close an app this way if the app is acting and it is unusable in its current state. Forcing an app to close can sometimes compromise the integrity of the app, so do this sparingly.

Close apps on Android from your home screen

Every phone is different so this process may be slightly different for each phone, but the basics should apply to most Android devices. In the photos used for this demonstration, we use a Samsung Galaxy S9 +.

shows the app menu to close apps Samsung Galaxy S9 +

Credit: Sarah Chaney / Android Authority

To start, swipe up from the bottom of your phone screen. For the Galaxy S9 +, you have to swipe up from the left. If you swipe up, you will see all your most recently used apps. The Galaxy S9 + shows a button that says Close everything. If you want to close all apps currently open on your device, tap that button.

Some devices may display slightly different wording or symbols, such as Delete everything, an X, and so on. Other devices sometimes require you to swipe all the way to the end of your open apps before you type Close everything button.

swipe up an app to close it on Samsung Galaxy S9 +

Credit: Sarah Chaney / Android Authority

If you want to close specific apps, you have to swipe each app individually. On the Galaxy S9 +, it is closed by swiping up an app. By swiping left or right, you can scroll through all your currently open apps.

On other devices, you have to swipe left or right to close apps. Then you can swipe up or down to browse your currently open apps.

How to enforce apps on Android from your app manager

Every now and then you come across an app that doesn’t load properly or keeps glitching no matter how many times you close and open it. When this happens, you need to force close the app. As mentioned earlier, forcing an app to close can sometimes mess with an app’s integrity or function. If that happens, you may need to uninstall and reinstall the app.

Also read: Taking screenshots on Android

However, many problems can be solved by forcing the app to close. And the process for doing this is actually quite simple.

On the Galaxy S9 +, you can tap and hold the app you want to force close. Once the app starts bouncing and a small menu with four options appears, click App information. This will take you directly to that app’s “page”, so to speak, in your App Manager. The Force stop button is located at the bottom on the right.

Touch and hold an app to open the menu

Credit: Sarah Chaney / Android Authority

Not all phones have this handy feature that allows you to force close an app right from your home screen. If you cannot access the app’s information by touching and holding the app, you will need to go through your phone’s settings and find the App Manager.

how to force an app Samsung Galaxy S9 +

Credit: Sarah Chaney / Android Authority

On the Galaxy S9 +, after navigating to Settings, you can use the search function to search for “Apps” or scroll down until you see Apps. After you tap Apps, you should see all your apps. Then you can scroll until you find the app you need to force close, click it and then click Force stop bottom right.

On other phones, the button could say Force close or be in a different location, but the purpose will be the same.

Is closing an app the same as removing it?

No, closing an app will end or disable it, but it will not permanently remove the app from your device. Even forcibly closing an app is not the same as removing an app.

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Force quitting an app is the equivalent of opening Task Manager on your computer and closing an application directly from there. There are certain processes that are still running in the background even after closing an app or program. So force closing an app on your phone will cause the app to close everything completely and essentially restart the next time you open it.

Deleting an app means deleting it permanently from your phone. If an app is seriously messed up and not acting properly, the best thing to do is delete the app and then download it again. If an app breaks multiple times, it might be time to contact their customer service or find a similar app if possible.

Make sure to close your apps regularly

While your phone won’t stop working if you have too many apps open, it will usually slow down. In addition, you will find that your battery will drain much faster if you never close your apps after using them.

Try to get into the habit of closing your apps right after using it. If that’s too much to remember, don’t forget to close your apps at the end of the day before going to sleep. Your phone will thank you!

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