Google (Pixel, Nexus)


Yes, even stock Android may kill your app when doing a task valuable to the user.

Moreover, in Android 6.0 Google did dramatically restrict background processing with their Doze mode

This attempt to unify various battery saving features across the Android ecosystem fell flat. It wasn’t only that Doze mode did not keep various vendors from implementing their own battery saving. Doze mode made some background processing scenarios impossible on Android or paradoxically more battery consuming e.g. gathering sensor data through sensor batching (see Solution for developers).

A serious bug in doze mode in Android 6.0 even prevented foreground services to do their job (see Solution for devs for workaround), but luckily this was fixed in 7.0.

Solution for users

Android P

There a special option in Settings > Apps > Your app > Advanced > Battery > Background restrictions. If users accidentally enable this option it will break their apps. And users do enable that option!

Pie and pre-Pie

Overall it is a good idea to make your app not battery optimized to ensure it gets the freedom it needs to perform in the background.

For that:

  1. Go to Settings > Apps > Your app > Advanced > Battery > Battery optimization
  2. Change view to All apps
  3. Search for your app
  4. Choose Not optimized

Make sure Settings > Apps > Your app > Advanced > Battery > Background limitations is not enabled. If the app is not yet optimized for Oreo API level it will break their background processing.

If all fails you can turn doze mode completely off in Settings > Developer options. (If you don’t know how to enable developer options, Google should help.)

Solution for devs

Some background processing scenarios are no more possible with Doze mode. For example low battery sensor logging using sensor batching is no more possible due to the 9 minute limit on consecutive alarms. The only workaround is keeping a partial wake lock all the time which means dramatically more battery is consumed for the same job.

Or a nasty hack to schedule a user-visible alarm though the setAlarmClock() method which can trigger more often.


Android 6.0

A serious bug in doze mode in Android 6.0 which we (authors of this site) did report to Google (Dianne Hackborn) during the 6.0 BETA does not allow foreground services to keep a wake lock every time an activity or a broadcast receiver kicks in, see and search for Petr Nalevka and Dianne Hackborn.

A workaround is to keep your foreground service in a separate process without any other Android components (read Activities, Receivers, Services..) in that process. This workaround is needed for all Android 6.0 devices but not needed on later devices where this is already fixed.


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