If you are anything like me and you own the keyboard dock for the Asus Transformer, then you probably keep it attached the majority of the time. The dock gives you quick access to the home, search, and menu shortcut keys, but what about the recent apps button? Unfortunately, a hardware button was not included. Although it is not much work to just tap the on-screen button since it is just a few inches away, it can still be annoying.

Instead, the Android 3.2 update brought us something a lot of us are already very familiar with - Alt+Tab. Keep holding Alt down and press Tab to cycle through the eight recent apps. Let go, and you will switch right to the highlighted app - yup, just like on your desktop, though requiring 1 extra press for some reason (the first one shows the menu, and only starts cycling through after the second one).


After just a few uses, you will be using this shortcut like it is second nature. The particularly nice thing about this feature is that you do not even have to touch the screen, so you can quickly multitask straight from the dock. Give it a try!

Ian G. Clifton
An Air Force veteran, Ian has been intrigued by technology for as long as he can remember. He develops Android applications for both work and play such as CNET News and Survivor, but he also enjoys art of all kinds and spends some of his few free minutes on photography and sketching.

  • Drayon

    This is interesting, not really the shortcut itself.
    But more that the gingerbread task switcher is still active in honeycomb.
    I would think that this shortcut would use the native task switcher instead of this

  • http://lankycyril.com/ Cyril

    "[Y]ou will be using this shortcut like it is second nature."

    You're putting it like it's a shortcut we've never encountered anywhere before :D

  • zach

    uhhh ohhhh microsoft and apple are going to sue Asus now for copying their "alt + tab" keyboard short cut for active applications!

    good tip though :)

  • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

    The main point is that Alt-TAB was only introduced in Honeycomb 3.2 and wasn't available before - Ian just forgot to mention this fact. I'll update the post.

  • Landrovan

    I don't know for tablet. But for my Nexus one, holding the home button bring the recent app.

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      Yeah, that doesn't work on a tablet.

  • Lawliet

    Thanks for the tip! Never knew this was possible.

  • volleydiver@net

    thanks for the tip. but on the ASUS300 you can touch the screen once on the screen icon and render the same results.