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Multitasking the Android Way

May 03, 2010, 19:04 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Dianne Hackborn)

"Android is fairly unique in the ways it allows multiple applications to run at the same time. Developers coming from a different platform may find the way it operates surprising. Understanding its behavior is important for designing applications that will work well and integrate seamlessly with the rest of the Android platform. This article covers the reasons for Android's multitasking design, its impact on how applications work, and how you can best take advantage of Android's unique features.

"Design considerations

"Mobile devices have technical limitations and user experience requirements not present in desktop or web systems. Here are the four key constraints we were working under as we designed Android's multitasking:
* We did not want to require that users close applications when "done" with them. Such a usage pattern does not work well in a mobile environment, where usage tends to involve repeated brief contact with a wide variety of applications throughout the day.
* Mobile devices don't have the luxury of swap space, so have fairly hard limits on memory use. Robert Love has a very good article covering the topic"

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