Google introduced a background process killer in Android 12 named Phantom Processes, which automatically detects and kills any child processes running in the background, that consume a lot of CPU.

While this is for better usage, it’s often limiting the experience. Thus, understanding the community, Google is introducing a toggle setting in the upcoming Android 13 for switching this killer feature off.

Android 12 Phantom Processes

For the uninitiated, Google added a new background process killer in Android 12 named the “Phantom Processes”, where the forked child processes of any background apps are killed if they’re extensively using the CPU’s power.

Also, the number of child processes allowed to run in the background was limited to just 32! While this is for the good of the handset’s resources and fast responses, doing so will kill the overall experience. Some big apps that need an excessive amount of CPU power will be excluded from this, which is bad.

As many are complaining about this, Google understood and is pushing support for disabling this feature in Android 13! As seen by XDA’s Mishaal Rahman, Google submitted a patch to AOSP for adding a toggle in the Developer Options, to turn off the Phantom Processes feature.

The description for the new setting read as;

Add settings to toggle the phantom process monitoring in dev options

For power users, the monitoring of phantom processes could be turned
off from the Settings->Developer Options->Feature flags.

This will be available in the latest Android update, probably in Android 13. Also, it may come to Android 12L, a specific variant of Android 12 designed for tablets, foldable phones, and other large-screen devices. Users choosing to disable Phantom Processes will also dump the limit of 32 background processes bar, thus leaving more room for new processes.


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