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How to keep an app permanently running in the background on the Galaxy S20

Galaxy S20 lock app background
Galaxy S20 lock app background (Image credit: Harish Jonnalagadda / Android Central)

With the Galaxy S20, there's an option to keep an app always running in the background. Whether it's an email client or your favorite messaging service, you can now lock an app so it doesn't get cleared away when the phone is idling. Here's how you can set up the feature.

How to keep an app permanently running in the background on the Galaxy S20

All variants of the Galaxy S20 come with 12GB of RAM as standard, so there's more than enough power to go around. You can easily keep several apps in memory without having to worry about running out of RAM. That said, One UI 2.0 only lets you pick one app to keep in memory, so you can only choose a single service to be kept open at all times.

  1. Tap the app you want to run in the background. This is to ensure that it's available in the recents menu.
  2. Launch the recents menu by hitting the square navigation key or with a swipe up and hold gesture from the bottom of the screen.
  3. Tap the app icon to bring up the menu.

Source: Harish Jonnalagadda / Android Central (Image credit: Source: Harish Jonnalagadda / Android Central)
  1. Tap Keep open for quick launching.
  2. The app will always be in memory. If you want to remove it so you can select another service, tap the Lock icon on the lower corner of the app. That will clear it from memory.

Source: Harish Jonnalagadda / Android Central (Image credit: Source: Harish Jonnalagadda / Android Central)

It's great that Samsung lets you lock an app so that it's always available in the background, but the fact that you can only do so with just a single app limits the feature somewhat. That said, it's still a nifty feature to have if you need to run something in the background at all times. It's a good idea to glance at the battery usage figures every few days to make sure the app isn't causing excessive battery drain.

Harish Jonnalagadda is a Senior Editor overseeing Asia at Android Central. He leads the site's coverage of Chinese phone brands, contributing to reviews, features, and buying guides. He also writes about storage servers, audio products, and the semiconductor industry. Contact him on Twitter at @chunkynerd.