The app switcher on your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch is usually tweaked and refined a little bit with almost every major iteration of the iOS mobile operating system.

On iOS 10, double-clicking the Home button brings up the app switcher which presents your recently used apps as swipeable cards. And with 3D Touch, you can get to the app switcher instantly by pressing the left side of the screen firmly. On iPad, you can also swipe up from the bottom of the screen with four fingers to invoke the app switcher.

Force-quitting an app on iOS 10 requires you to swipe right or left in the app switcher to find the app that you want to close, then swipe up on its preview to close the app.

On iOS 11 and later, accessing the app switcher hasn’t changed, but force-quitting troublesome apps now works slightly differently on iPad compared to earlier iOS editions.

Watch Andre’s video hands-on with iOS 11’s new app switcher on iPad.

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Continue reading for the step-by-step instructions on force-quitting misbehaving iPad apps using the redesigned app switcher on iOS 11.

How to force-quit iPad apps on iOS 11

1) Double-click your iPad’s Home button to bring up the app switcher.

2) Hold your finger on any app preview in the app switcher, just like you would hold on the icons on your Home screen, until the little “x” appears in the top-left corner of the app previews.

3) Kill an unresponsive or troublesome app by tapping the “x” in its top-left corner.

TIP: You can continue force-quitting other apps in the app switcher, if you like.

4) Exit the app switcher by clicking the Home button.

On iPhone and iPod touch, force-quitting apps is absolutely the same as on iOS 10.

And that’s the way the cookie crumbles, boys and girls.

For the sake of completeness, force-quitting iOS apps isn’t necessary unless an app stops responding or is eating up your memory. There are zero benefits to force-quitting apps you’re not using because iOS automatically manages memory.

As a matter of fact, when you force-quite an app and relaunch it later, iOS has to load it from flash storage into the RAM, which consumes power.

Even Apple itself clarified that force-quitting multitasking iOS apps frequently is unnecessary and doing so may actually worsen rather than extend your battery life.

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  • malhal

    Would be better if you could just drag it off the top of the screen like on the iPhone. I don’t like how when you tap the x another x appears right under where you just tapped so if you accidentally touch the screen again then you closed another app by mistake.

    • Yeah, that would be much better

    • Iskren Donev

      I was thinking the same thing – have the same motion as with the iPhone task switcher.You can tap-and-hold if you want to rearrange the apps in the switcher.

    • Dave Frischknecht

      In the GM version of iOS 11, you can swipe to force quit an app on the iPad, but not the iPhone X. On the iPhone X, you have to tap-and-hold and then tap the red circle button with a white line through it.

  • igobythisname

    Apple can claim that iOS manages memory, but I used to always force Quit All Apps, then I stopped to let iOS auto manage, and I still noticed apps not running, or running very poorly! I don’t care what Apple says or the community thinks they know (from what Apple says), my iOS devices have always run best when I frequently force Quit All apps!

    • Jose Rivera

      I agree. I know people say it’s bad and it uses more battery, but i’m a person who can actually out their phone down for a while and let it rest without anything in the background. Plus, i prefer to give each app as much memory as possible so it can run the best. I only usually have a max of 3 apps open. Sometimes I let it get out of control and I have everything in the background. I’ve always closed my apps completely. My battery hasn’t gotten any better or any worse from what I’ve noticed.

  • That was one feature from iOS 10 that I missed a lot. The new process to close apps is not practical
    The other feature that I missed is the timer on the podcasts app.