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Support Question about Soft Reset

Discussion in 'Android Devices' started by markdoc, Mar 1, 2016.

  1. markdoc

    markdoc Android Expert
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    I believe that a Soft Reset is the equivalent of a battery pull when the battery isn't removable. I looked that up and found that pushing both the Power and Volume Up buttons did a soft reset. Accepting that, then shouldn't a soft reset empty the list of apps you get when you press the "Recent Apps" button. My problem is that it didn't work. Pressing both buttons restarted the phone, but didn't clear out the Recent Apps. Therefore, something is wrong. Either I didn't do a Soft Reset or a Soft Reset doesn't empty the recent apps. I would really appreciate finding out my mistake.
    Thanks in advance,
     

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  2. svim

    svim Android Expert
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    The term 'Soft Reset' might be better defined as a 'Forced Restart'. For devices that have physically removable batteries when you remove the battery, the device loses its power source. Some components still retain a 'charge' but only for a few seconds, that's why it's often recommended to wait a minute or so before putting the battery back in. With a computer or laptop, there's a main battery that's its power source but there's also a small reserve battery (often referred to as the CMOS battery) that only supplies enough power for specific components to hold information (date, time, and hardware configuration) no matter if the computer/laptop is on/off or without its main battery. Smartphones don't have something like a CMOS battery so it once the battery is removed, power is lost.
    In contrast, phones with fixed batteries the actual hardware is always in some way fed power by the battery. So something like the power switch doesn't function like say a switch inside a lamp. With a lamp, the switch can be 'on' and allow current through it, or 'off' and its metal contacts inside are no longer in contact with each or so there's no current passing through. But a smartphone switch, since it's always powered, functions by passing electrical signals to various components where your phone can be in an 'on' state or an 'off' state. So things like 'Recent Apps' are still retained somewhere in active memory.
    If you really, really feel compelled to completely power off your phone, it's not a trivial task. You'll need to tear it down and pull the battery connectors -- see step 6 in this link:
    https://www.ifixit.com/Guide/HTC+One+M9+Motherboard+Replacement/42533
     
  3. markdoc

    markdoc Android Expert
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    Thanks for the information. I'm not doubting what you said. But in older phones, like my HTC DNA Droid, a soft reset was the same as a battery pull. The literature said it and, in reality, it worked. It was just short of a factory hard reset. I guess things have changed, and not for the best. I wouldn't buy the HTC DNA until I was sure that you could do at least something equivalent to a battery pull. I wish that was still an option.
     
  4. psionandy

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    They've changed the way the recent apps thing works on newer devices... So that list doesn't get reset any more on a soft reset (or battery pull) ... And as you can guess it annoyed a lot of people... Sigh
     
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  5. svim

    svim Android Expert
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    The basic principal is still the same whether it's older phones or new ones. A smartphone power button isn't so much a mechanical one but more of an electronic one. The metal contacts inside it don't cut or allow power from the battery directly, it's just a switch that sends a signal to other components on the motherboard. Unless power to the motherboard is cut off completely, whether some data like recent apps or other settings get retained or flushed during a reset is determined by the hardware and possibly the software configuration of each particular model of phone.
     
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HTC One M9

The HTC One M9 is the company's 2015 flagship smartphone. Its specs include a Snapdragon 810 chipset, 5-inch 1080p display, 3GB of RAM, a 20MP rear camera paired with an UltraPixel front camera, 2,840mAh battery, and more.
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