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#27296 - 11/06/13 03:29 AM IPad - Battery?
ryck Offline


Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Okanagan Valley
The issue is a friend's one year old iPad that does not seem to want to hold a charge. It had been slow to charge and now, when plugged into the charger, has a black screen with only an image of an empty battery starting to fill.

This was after it spent a day on the charger.

Yesterday the bottom of the iPad was warm to the touch. My iPad has never felt warm.

Edit: this problem machine has been plugged into the Apple charger and appears to be charging okay, without heat.


Edited by ryck (11/06/13 04:13 AM)
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#27299 - 11/06/13 08:42 AM Re: IPad - Battery? [Re: ryck]
joemikeb Online
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Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Fort Worth, Texas
Unless it has been pretty badly abused, which includes leaving the charger plugged in for long periods of time, it should last longer than a year. Personally Iwould start with a trip to the Genius Desk at the nearest Apple Store. Even if it is out of warranty and no Applecare they may elect to simply replace the iPod. Be sure and tell your friend they will save themselves a lot of time by calling ahead or going online for an appointment before going. Especially now as they approach the busy season.
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#27363 - 11/10/13 03:16 AM Re: IPad - Battery? [Re: joemikeb]
ryck Offline


Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Okanagan Valley
Originally Posted By: joemikeb
Personally I would start with a trip to the Genius Desk at the nearest Apple Store.

We took it to the Apple Store and, to wrap up this thread, the firmware was replaced (which only took a few minutes) and we were on our way.

I asked the technician what he thought may have caused the problem and he suggested it could have been not clearing previously used apps (seen by double-clicking on the Home button). He felt that a buildup of of still-running apps might have been more than the machine could handle.

That explanation seemed reasonable given grandchildren were visiting and using the iPad, so there would have been a significant buildup.
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#27390 - 11/13/13 06:19 PM Re: IPad - Battery? [Re: ryck]
ganbustein Offline


Registered: 08/04/09
Originally Posted By: ryck
I asked the technician what he thought may have caused the problem and he suggested it could have been not clearing previously used apps (seen by double-clicking on the Home button). He felt that a buildup of of still-running apps might have been more than the machine could handle.

That explanation seemed reasonable given grandchildren were visiting and using the iPad, so there would have been a significant buildup.


That explanation makes absolutely no sense. The list of applications that you see when you double-click the home button should be thought of as the "Recent Applications" menu.

iOS devices have very limited RAM. The system is very good about freeing up memory when it's needed. (It's also very good about not freeing up the memory until it's needed.)

When you switch to a different application under iOS, the application you switch from is told it is no longer frontmost and must save to disk (which of course is actually flash memory) whatever information it will need to continue where it was, because whatever information it has in RAM can be yanked away from it without further notice.

Just because an application is on that list does not mean it's running, nor that it has anything in RAM. Except in rare cases, nothing on the list is running.

Prior to iOS 7, an app that wanted to do something in the background would have to specify, as part of its submission to the App Store, exactly what it wanted to do. Only a few things were permitted: A phone app can continue being a phone in the background (unless the front app wants to be a phone), or it can stream audio (unless the front app wants to produce audio), or it can record (but not process) GPS data. There may be something else on that list, but it's a short list, and Apple will verify that it's something in line with what your app purports to do. If the app does anything at all in the background, it's doing something that you know it's doing. (In particular, unless it's a VOIP app or a streaming audio app, it cannot maintain an Interned connection while in the background.)

iOS 7 is more lenient about what functionality apps are allowed to provide in the background, but the fundamental rule is the same: if you're in the background and the frontmost application needs your RAM, it gets it. If you need to be killed to get that RAM, then so long, it was good to know you. You may or may not be warned. Plan ahead.

If you dismiss an application from that list of Recent Apps, anything it had in RAM will be released immediately whether the system needs it or not. If it's doing something in the background, it will perforce stop doing that. When it becomes the frontmost application again, it will be told it's starting from scratch and has nothing left in RAM from its previous execution. Some buggy applications benefit from that, because they make wrong assumptions about what does and does not need to be reinitialized when they aren't forced to reinitialize everything, so killing a recalcitrant app to make it load again correctly may be beneficial for that one app.

But only as a workaround for specific buggy apps. In the general case, there's no reason to think that killing the whole list periodically has any sort of maintenance benefit.

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#27394 - 11/14/13 07:22 AM Re: IPad - Battery? [Re: ganbustein]
ryck Offline


Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Okanagan Valley
Originally Posted By: ganbustein
That explanation makes absolutely no sense.

Gee, and I thought I was talking to a Genius at the bar...... laugh "Grain of salt" lesson now learned.

Thanks for a comprehensive, and much better, explanation of what happens with the applications shown in the background.
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#27395 - 11/14/13 09:48 AM Re: IPad - Battery? [Re: ryck]
joemikeb Online
Moderator

Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Fort Worth, Texas
Not to argue with Gangbustein's excellent synopsis of what passes for multi-tasking in iOS devices, but I would emphasize there are apps that remain active and will rapidly deplete the battery if they are not "killed", quit, or stopped. Anything to do with the GPS function falls into this category. Many of those apps retain contact with the GPS unit, even when they do not have the focus, and many of them do not "shut off" when the destination is reached. I am also suspicious of the growing number of apps that provide location based services under what circumstances and when do they "check in" to find the current location. Some are apparently continuously tracking your location in order to notify the user of stores, sites, friends, etc. in the immediate area. I suspect at least part of this is possible in the relatively small iOS memory by using memory compression techniques similar to that just introduced in Mavericks.

That said, I think the "Genius" was stretching for an explanation and perhaps had not thought the situation entirely through. Remember the "Genius" is not a computer or software engineer intimately acquainted with the detailed inner workings of the operating systems. They are really more of a well trained "power user" with lots of experience and access to diagnostic tools beyond that available to the general public.
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#27396 - 11/14/13 10:06 AM Re: IPad - Battery? [Re: joemikeb]
Ira L Offline


Registered: 08/13/09
Loc: California
Originally Posted By: joemikeb
I am also suspicious of the growing number of apps that provide location based services under what circumstances and when do they "check in" to find the current location. Some are apparently continuously tracking your location in order to notify the user of stores, sites, friends, etc. in the immediate area.


So true. Just prior to reading your comments I noticed my iPhone was showing the active location service icon—that little not-really-triangular-wedge in the upper right; what is it, a paper airplane?—and it turns out the phone's Camera app was the culprit. Remove the Camera app from the background apps and the icon vanishes.
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#27397 - 11/14/13 02:23 PM Re: IPad - Battery? [Re: Ira L]
joemikeb Online
Moderator

Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Fort Worth, Texas
It is because of things like this, I make it a practice to manually scrub the "active" iOS apps frequently. Like every day or so. It is amazing how long a battery charge lasts under this regimen.
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#27403 - 11/15/13 07:17 AM Re: IPad - Battery? [Re: joemikeb]
ryck Offline


Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Okanagan Valley
Originally Posted By: joemikeb
?...there are apps that remain active and will rapidly deplete the battery if they are not "killed", quit, or stopped. Anything to do with the GPS function falls into this category. Many of those apps retain contact with the GPS unit, even when they do not have the focus, and many of them do not "shut off" when the destination is reached.
Is there an easy way to know which these might be? Would they be the ones that start with the dialogue box about "...wants to use your location"?

If a user knew which they were, at the point of using them, they could be scrubbed immediately after use.
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#27409 - 11/15/13 09:31 AM Re: IPad - Battery? [Re: ryck]
Ira L Offline


Registered: 08/13/09
Loc: California
Look for the active location indicator that I described in a couple of posts above.

This little symbol says something is using GPS. But as you say, unless the app asks to use your location, you may not know that it is. A good example is the Camera app. Otherwise, trial and error by "killing" the apps one at a time is the only way to know. And if you have multiple apps that are involved, unless you systematically open and close them individually, you may not be aware of all of the culprits, so to speak.
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#27412 - 11/15/13 12:51 PM Re: IPad - Battery? [Re: Ira L]
ryck Offline


Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Okanagan Valley
Originally Posted By: Ira L
Look for the active location indicator that I described in a couple of posts above.

Ah, yes, looks like a tiny delta wing aircraft. I'm pretty sure they couldn't have made it smaller. Anyway...just ran a test....opened Google Maps (which asks the location question) and sure enough it popped up. Thanks.
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ryck

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#27436 - 11/18/13 07:37 PM Re: IPad - Battery? [Re: ryck]
Virtual1 Offline


Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Iowa
A battery heating up and not taking a charge sounds more like a bad battery than anything else. I don't see how a firmware update would address that.
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#27447 - 11/19/13 05:57 AM Re: IPad - Battery? [Re: Virtual1]
ryck Offline


Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Okanagan Valley
Originally Posted By: Virtual1
A battery heating up and not taking a charge sounds more like a bad battery than anything else.

That's where my thoughts immediately went and I mentioned the condition to the Apple person. He ran a test and said the battery checked out, adding that some heat was to be expected.

I'm now in a different city but can send an email to see if the iPad is still charging and retaining the charge okay.


Edited by ryck (11/19/13 05:57 AM)
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ryck

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#27485 - 11/20/13 04:46 AM Re: IPad - Battery? [Re: Virtual1]
ryck Offline


Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Okanagan Valley
I have checked by email and the report is that the iPad continues to charge well and hold its charge....no other issues. I wonder if the firmware replacement triggered something in the software to work, if the software had perhaps not been doing its job in the charge process.
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ryck

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