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Friday, 12 March 2010 13:29

Multitasking coming to iPhone?

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Apple will reportedly introduce full multitasking in version 4.0 of the iPhone OS, due out this summer.


Since its inception, the iPhone's lack of multitasking -- the ability for third-party apps to run in the background -- has been one of the biggest frustrations of the device's owners (and one of the main reasons to jailbreak it).

The rationale for the restriction is that it inhibits infection by malware, since harmful software can't run without the user's awareness.

Now, according to a report on the news and rumor site AppleInsider, that restriction's about to be lifted.

Citing "people with a proven track record in predicting Apple's technological advances," the report says that the multitasking function will be based on technology already in Mac OS X.

Several issues still need to be resolved, however, and AppleInsider's sources say development of the feature has "quite a way to go."

For what those issues are, see Page 2.



One concern, besides the security one, is how to maximize battery life while still running multiple apps. It has been suggested that an app will run in a sort of reduced mode while in the background.

Another issue has to do with the user interface. Now, users return to the Home screen to launch another app, but that would be unwieldy for switching directly to another running program.

But assuming those problems are solved, and that the report is accurate, it won't belong now before iPhone owners will be able to keep listening to their Pandora stations even while sending a text message.


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