How should I exit/close Pokemon Go without closing(swiping it away in latest versions of android) from the Recently Opened Apps menu?

enter image description here

Back button doesn't show any option for me to exit..
Is there a (more) proper way in the Pokemon Go app rather than explicitly exiting from Android's own Recently Opened Apps menu?

  • 6
    why without swiping it away?
    – lois6b
    Commented Jul 19, 2016 at 8:50
  • 8
    Isn't swiping it away closing the app down? Are you asking how can I close something without using the close function?
    – Kiwu
    Commented Jul 19, 2016 at 8:52
  • 1
    I wouldn't consider this question to be on-topic since it's about closing applications on either of the mobile systems.
    – nicael
    Commented Jul 19, 2016 at 20:12
  • 2
    Pokemon Go has a exit button inside the setting menu, but it just performs a logout, Apple forbids programatically closing apps on IOS so probably they just had done the same on Android.
    – Nanoc
    Commented Jul 20, 2016 at 11:50

8 Answers 8


You're not closing it properly unless you swipe it away. That's the app developer's fault (or by design as far as we are concerned) Pressing the home button only minimizes and pauses the game, swiping it, actually closes it, and when you re-start it it is forced to actually call the server, load properly and give you the latest Pokemon in your area. Sometimes when there hasn't been anything near me, I swipe it to reset the Pokemon around me and reload properly ...

  • 1
    You may want to specify who the "Developers" are - Niantic or the OS Dev's?
    – Ben
    Commented Jul 19, 2016 at 8:54
  • 3
    @Ben That would be Niantic, edited. Commented Jul 19, 2016 at 8:56
  • 13
    In which case you may again want to specify why. Apps are left in a "standby" state when the home button is pressed, regardless of the app. This is by design of the OS, not the app.
    – Ben
    Commented Jul 19, 2016 at 8:58
  • 3
    @Yawz I wouldn't know either. As I said it could be by design and their intention for you not to close the app in any other way. Because it is literally two lines of code to be able to do it on back button press. Commented Jul 19, 2016 at 9:02
  • 2
    I personally think it does this on purpose to work in parallel with the Battery Saver option, as to not close the app by accident if you hit the android 'Back' button when the battery saver black screen is on in a players pocket. Commented Jul 20, 2016 at 8:45

It depends on which phone you're using. If you are using an iPhone, you will need to "swipe" it to close it.

If you are using an Android OS phone (as it appears you are from the image provided), you can still "swipe to close", which will safely close the app.

However, in extreme cases, you can "Force Stop" the app from the app settings menu. However this immediately and forcibly closes the app, killing all processes that may shut down the app safely. Doing so may cause a loss of data.

  • 2
    In the case of Pokemon Go, you don't need to worry - all player information is stored on their servers
    – Ben
    Commented Jul 19, 2016 at 9:03
  • 1
    You can swipe to close on Android too, no need to force close as that is only for extreme situations. Commented Jul 19, 2016 at 9:05
  • 1
    They are two separate processes. See edit.
    – Ben
    Commented Jul 19, 2016 at 9:09
  • 1
    @ Иво Недев itworld.com/article/2693446/…
    – Ben
    Commented Jul 19, 2016 at 9:24
  • 2
    @Yawz There is no risk of loss of data via swiping - only force closing. Those are two separate things, and swiping it away in android is still a "graceful" close to my understanding.
    – daboross
    Commented Jul 20, 2016 at 6:43

With the latest version on Android you can now close the app using the back button. You will get a confirmation dialog to do it like shown on this image:

enter image description here

  • Does this actually close the app completely, or just minimize it? According to at least one other answer referencing the Halloween update, the back button will not close the app completely.
    – Mage Xy
    Commented Nov 9, 2016 at 18:51
  • That was probably another update because this really closes it
    – Ivo
    Commented Nov 9, 2016 at 18:52
  • @MageXy I verified this, and it does completely close the app Commented Nov 9, 2016 at 18:53
  • Ok cool. I was just checking, since I don't see anything about closing behavior in the latest patch notes.
    – Mage Xy
    Commented Nov 9, 2016 at 18:53
  • @MageXy There have been a lot of uncommented changes. e.g. viewing a gym with a Pokemon you haven't seen before will generate a grayed entry in the Pokedex Commented Nov 9, 2016 at 18:56

The answer to your question is probably do nothing, as the system will do it for you.

It's important to note that the game (or any other app) will not simply run forever until manually closed. The Android operating system has built-in mechanisms for closing down apps which have been left running when their resources (such as system memory) are required by the system. In other words, if you start another game or other resource-intensive activity, Pokemon GO will most likely be shutdown by Android. It's actually recommended in most cases by Android that developers not manually terminate their applications, but allow the system to do it for them. (Emphasis mine)

In most cases, you should not explicitly finish an activity using these methods. As discussed in the following section about the activity lifecycle, the Android system manages the life of an activity for you, so you do not need to finish your own activities. Calling these methods could adversely affect the expected user experience and should only be used when you absolutely do not want the user to return to this instance of the activity.

Source Link

This is probably why Niantic did not implement a back-button-to-close feature. All that being said, if you want to terminate the app because it's not refreshing properly (which happens often) the swipe method from the recent apps menu is perfectly acceptable and should not adversely affect your player data.

  • 2
    The only actually correct answer. An explicit exit button only makes sense when there is some background activity after you leave the app. Otherwise any properly designed application should cease using any resources once it's not on the screen.
    – Malcolm
    Commented Jul 20, 2016 at 8:39
  • 1
    @Malcolm As a user, I feel cheated if I have no way of exiting an app except by force closing it. I don't care about system resources, when I'm done with an app, especially a game, I want to be able to close it, plain and simple. I don't want to have dozens of apps lingering around in the background and I don't want to have to force close every single one of them (or all at once, killing apps I didn't want to kill in the process). From my point of view, an explicit exit button is proper app design and should always be included out of respect for users. Kinda like an unsubscribe link in emails.
    – scenia
    Commented Oct 28, 2016 at 4:43
  • @scenia The question is why you would want to not have apps in the background (provided they don't use the CPU, of course). There is an advantage of faster startup when they are already in RAM, if they aren't, you lose that and don't gain anything in return.
    – Malcolm
    Commented Oct 28, 2016 at 7:37
  • 1
    @scenia But I just said, the app can save state when it's notified that it has become killable, so when you go back to the app, you'll continue where you left off.
    – Malcolm
    Commented Nov 4, 2016 at 9:48
  • 1
    @scenia If the system only killed apps which were manually flagged as killable by the user, most users would quickly run out of RAM and be unable to do anything at all, because most wouldn't know to do so. So it's necessary for the system to kill apps without explicit instruction. And you're mistaken in your belief that no method is called to notify the app it has been closed, and that it retains RAM indefinitely. When the system kills an app, all the memory that app was using is freed for other apps. By the way, you seem to be confusing "properly" closed with "manually" terminated.
    – Zeus
    Commented Nov 7, 2016 at 21:53

The back button works with some apps, not all of them. Use button home to close it (not the app, just the window) or switch between apps. if you want to close it entirely, you must "swipe away" or any other process you may use


Since none of the answers seem to mention it, I will.

I'm an android user, so I'm only speaking about android.

Swiping the app away from the app window only closes the actual app, but there's still a service left running (it's been running for over 11 hours, last I checked, so it's safe to assume it's not going to be automatically closed by android automatically). So, if you really want to fully exit Pokemon Go you should swipe it away in the active app list and then go to Application Manager > Running > Click Pokemon process there and Stop it.

Edit: The issue seems to have been fixed. I no longer see any background processes running after simply swipe the app away.


Now with new update Halloween, you can press back button and it's close!

  • It's not closed, though, it's only minimized, similar to when you press the Home button. In order to close it, you still have to then go into the task manager or recent apps list and swipe it. This is quite annoying because it's very easy to accidentally do this and the app doesn't continue tracking distance or pokemon spawns when it's minimized. I have no idea why they would do this when it's not even actually closing the app (with prior confirmation). This new feature is just plain inconvenient, offers nothing, and can cause quite the accidental frustration.
    – scenia
    Commented Oct 28, 2016 at 4:49

root ur phone to add a KILL function eg. long press BACK. better kill it when not playing it will drain battery and suck off ur data

  • For most modern phones, There's already user accessible options to kill processes and services. Also, rooting isn't a legitimate answer as it's not part of the game (as in, The only options that come default to the app and phone are allowed) and it requires the user/reader to preform what could be (at best) unnecessary work and (at worst) dangerous/unsafe-for-common-user changes.
    – NBN-Alex
    Commented Aug 15, 2016 at 5:36
  • i have been using ROOT TO KILL for years, there's no adverse effect on apps or phone system. it's the easiest way to close apps with no close option or apps with many BACK BACK....to each his own
    – kcw
    Commented Aug 15, 2016 at 6:20
  • @NBN-Alex The OPs question was about how to close the app, this answer provides a way to do that.
    – MattR
    Commented Aug 15, 2016 at 8:08
  • @MattR Actually, it doesn't (any more). Since the app won't run on a rooted phone at all, you can't close it on a rooted phone either. Any method that requires root access automatically fails. Also, rooting your phone voids your warranty, there's a reason for that. If something can be done without root access, rooting is never good advice.
    – scenia
    Commented Oct 28, 2016 at 4:53

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