Most major Android OEMs have seen fit to include a button to clear the entire recent apps list, but that's never been a feature of stock Android. Well, until now. In the latest Android N developer preview, Google has added a 'clear all' button to the recent apps list.

Swiping an app away in the recent apps list isn't the same as going in and force closing a process, but it signals to the system that it can kill the process. It often will, unless there's a notification preventing it. Background processes are ended as well, but they usually restart a few seconds later. If you remove all the apps from the list, that can cause a lot of processes to be ended. Many users have been asking for this, but I don't know if it's necessarily about managing processes. It's probably also a clutter thing.

The new 'clear all' button doesn't show up until you scroll all the way to the top of the list. It's not as easily accessible as it is in all those OEM skins, but the functionality is there. This is a developer preview, so there's no telling if the button will survive. I could see this simply being something for developers that isn't destined for the final build.

  • Thanks:
  • alvaro padilla