iOS 8: A Take Control Crash Course
by Josh Centers

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Switching Apps in iOS 8

Once upon a time, iOS could run only one app at a time, and the only way to “switch” between apps was to press the Home button to exit the current app and then open another. In recent years, the App Switcher has let you quickly flip between open apps, peek at their contents, and close them. In iOS 8, the App Switcher now also provides shortcuts to your recent contacts and to Handoff .

① 	The App Switcher is a beautiful way to flick between open apps.

① The App Switcher is a beautiful way to flick between open apps.

Opening the App Switcher

Note: Closing an app does not usually help your battery life, and may hurt it. See Busting Battery Usage Myths.

Switching Open Apps

  1. Open the App Switcher.
  2. If you don’t see the open app you want, flick left or right to find it.

    If the app you are switching to is coming from Handoff (see About Handoff), flick right. The Handoff activity screen is always at the left of the App Switcher.

  3. Tap the app you wish to switch to.

Closing an App

  1. Open the App Switcher.
  2. If you don’t see the open app you want, flick left or right to find it.
  3. Flick the app’s image toward the top of the screen.

Tip: You can close up to three apps simultaneously, one per finger.

New! Suggested Apps in the App Switcher

Certain location-based apps appear in the App Switcher automatically, to the left of the Home screen. Tap the app to open it. For example, if you have the Apple Store app installed and are near an Apple Store, that app appears.

You can turn this feature off entirely in Settings > General > Handoff & Suggested Apps.

New! Contact Shortcuts

A list of recent contacts appears at the top of the App Switcher. To get in touch with a contact, tap his icon and then tap a connection method, such as phone call, text message, or FaceTime . (You may have to flick horizontally to view all available options.)

② 	Contact Shortcuts grants quick access to your most recent contacts.

② Contact Shortcuts grants quick access to your most recent contacts.

To disable this feature, visit Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars, and under Contacts, turn off Show in App Switcher.

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“Don’t like the recent contact icons in iOS 8’s app switcher? Remove them in Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars.”

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