Android 14 no longer allows you to “kill the background”
There are many apps in the Android App Store that offer "one-click acceleration" to speed up your phone by cleaning up the background apps in your Android system.
Is this useful and does it make sense to have such apps? With the release of Android 14 DP2, Android users have an official explanation.
In general, these "one-click speedup" apps have a special permission (KILL_BACKGROUND_PROCESSES) to clear the background by executing a system command (ActivityManager.killBackgroundProcesses), which simply and brutally kills memory. The app reclaims memory by executing the system command (ActivityManager.killBackgroundProcesses), which simply and brutally kills the resident processes in memory.
As of Android 14, the API for apps to obtain this special permission (KILL_BACKGROUND_PROCESSES) is restricted. "One-touch acceleration apps, including all apps that have access to kill backgrounds, will only be able to kill their own background processes.
This means that one-click accelerators are a thing of the past, and that multiple applications will no longer be able to fight each other in the background.
According to the Android 14DP2 description document, Android believes that applications "should not use the killBackgroundProcesses() API or other methods to attempt to affect the processes of other applications.
Android aims to keep cached applications in the background and terminate them automatically when the system needs memory. The One Click Accelerate app unnecessarily kills other app processes, which can reduce system performance and increase battery consumption.
This is because the system has to restart these apps from scratch later, which uses more resources than restoring the existing app cache. Starting with Android 14, system apps with the new KILL_ALL_BACKGROUND_PROCESSES permission can only kill background processes of other apps.
Another interesting detail is that the description document also mentions that "third-party apps cannot improve the memory, power, or thermal performance of Android devices".
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