Android 14 will restrict one of the APIs that "task killer" apps commonly use. In previous versions, apps with the KILL_BACKGROUND_PROCESSES permission could use ActivityManager.killBackgroundProcesses(String) to terminate all background processes of a given app. However, in Android 14, regardless of an app's target API level, this method will only be able to kill its own background processes. This change was already present in Android 14 DP1, and new documentation was added with the release of Android 14 DP2 to clarify it. The documentation advises that apps should not use the killBackgroundProcesses() API or attempt to influence the process lifecycle of other apps, even on older OS versions.
The documentation for the change in the killBackgroundProcesses() API includes a note that third-party applications cannot enhance the memory, power, or thermal behavior of Android devices. It also advises developers to comply with Google Play's policy against deceptive behavior and misleading claims. Although Google Play's policy previously prohibited deceptive behavior, including apps making misleading claims about functionalities that could not be implemented, it did not explicitly forbid apps from claiming to enhance device or OS performance. However, the wording of this note suggests that Google may start considering such claims as misleading and may take action against apps that make them.