Sleep mode in Windows Mobile

Early into the developement of the Windows Mobile version of SportyPal, we noticed an interesting feature of the operating system that bugs us to this day: even if there is work actively being done by an application (such as, for example, recording the coordinates of a GPS-tracked workout), the device will go to sleep mode if it’s set to do so and you don’t press any keys in the meantime. Unfortunately for us, sleep mode also kills the GPS signal, and we don’t want this to happen during a workout. To work around this without having to tell the users to change their power settings for every workout, SportyPal disables sleep mode during workouts (where having a constant GPS fix is obviously pretty important) and handles the screen state itself. So far, so good. But there are two problems that remain:

First, if you press the power button to turn the screen off, the device goes to sleep and your signal is lost. Don’t do this during a workout, the screen will turn itself off pretty soon, and you can turn it back on by pushing any button on your device.

Second, unlike the devices that we tested on, some devices completely ignore our attempts to disable sleep mode and sleep anyway. Over the next few CAB updates, we’ll be looking for a way to disable sleep mode for all Windows Mobile devices. However, since we can’t test if this works (we haven’t had any problems with this on our devices to begin with), we’ll need your input to tell us if what we’re doing is any good.

Until we sort this out, users with the auto-sleep problem are going to have to set their power settings manually. To do this, go to Start -> Settings -> System -> Power -> Advanced and uncheck the “turn off device if not used for…” option.

Power Settings

Power Settings

Explore posts in the same categories: Bugs, Unresolved


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20 Comments on “Sleep mode in Windows Mobile”

  1. fahri sengun Says:

    This is very annoying.
    I see this software as a very good WM version of Nokia Sports Tracker.
    But this error drives me nuts.
    Pleeaaase, fix it.

  2. Ric Says:

    I think this is not an issue for me because even when I manually hit the power button on my phone to put it in sleep mode, I still get tracked while the screen is off and in sleep mode. When i’m taking a break and stopped, I hit the power button and unlock my phone with this locking app that I have and it’s still running when the screen comes up. I think that app also has an exception list that lets programs run in the background even in sleep mode. Fahri might want to check that out. It’s called slide to unlock. Google it.

    Although I’m wondering if this is also what is causing the start of my trip to show up as the first time I take a break and pause Sportypal as opposed to my actual starting point? Or is this just part of the 1.0.1 bug? I’m going to try leaving the phone on and not manually putting it in sleep mode on my next ride.

  3. BD Says:

    I have an AT&T Tilt aka HTC 8925……I have found if I just slide the screen open it wakes back up and since my phone is a battery hog I let it sleep….but it doesn’t turn off the GPS….or Sportypal when sleeping

    • SportyPal Says:

      Are you sure that it’s the phone’s sleep mode and not SportyPal’s? If you can get out of it by pressing the center button, it’s probably SportyPal’s.

  4. BD Says:

    Can’t use the center button to wake it up…..this sleep only happens when using sportypal……but I have not tried the battery setting yet……I have just slide the top open and closed and it wakes back up…..

    Still think SP is a great program.

  5. JS Says:

    Device: Verizon VX6800. When sportypal goes into sleep mode it looses any GPS signals and when taking it out of sleep mode, it takes 3-8 seconds for it to update the time (although the time is correct) but during sleep mode it hasn’t recorded any GPS points. End result, correctly timed workouts but I haven’t moved an inch! Very fustrating as I think this would be agreat application if it worked correctly.

  6. Whytey Says:

    I use an external GPS and with 1.01, I manually press the power button to turn off the screen when I am about to start my workout, since I put the phone in a case on my arm.

    I have never had a problem with SportyPal tracking me from the beginning of my run.

    iMate JasJam (HTC Hermes) with Windows 6.


    • SportyPal Says:

      Though we haven’t tested SportyPal with an external GPS unit, it makes sense that putting the device into standby wouldn’t affect the external unit.

  7. Ken Says:

    My HTC Diamond works exactly as you describe with your fix. Actually, I haven’t tried other buttons, as I usually turn the screen back on with power button.

    As this phone doesn’t have much in the way of battery, any improvements you can make in terms of power conservation will be appreciated.

  8. rodrigo Says:

    i have and HTC Diamond and using it as you said ( not pressin the power button) works great.
    i have not tried sing other aplications yet.

  9. Jerry Says:

    I’ve had the same issue with my Sprint HTC Touch Pro. I’ll have to disable the sleep mode and see if that works better. It’s a bit frustrating to see my workout “end” when in reality, it didn’t end at all!

  10. Jeremy Says:

    So close!

    Device: Sprint HTC Snap (WinMo Standard 6.1)
    SP Version: 1.0.7

    So the Snap still goes to sleep when SportyPal is running, even though I told my HTC device to not turn off the screen.

    Settings -> Power ->
    – Turn off Backlight (Never)
    – Turn off Screen (Never)

    The kicker: If I’m NOT running SportyPal, the screen and backlight stay on and does not shut off – ever. But if I start SportyPal and start a workout, the screen shuts off after a minute or two and tracking stops.

    If I’m running SportyPal, it’s like the “override” you are trying to do actually switches it back shutting off. I can keep sporty pal going by pressing a button every minute or so, but that’s tough at 25mph.

    Appologies for the cross-post to two threads, didn’t know which was better…

  11. BobAlain Says:

    Is there any way to configure the duration before SportyPal goes to sleep mode ? As far as I can tell, it is about 30 seconds, I would like it to be longer.

  12. Andre Says:

    I am running 1.0.9 on a Verizon HTC TouchPro2 and also see the problem. The weird thing is that I allways use the sleep button to put the device to sleep after I started the workout and sometimes SP keeps recording GPS data, sometimes not. Sometimes it stops recording after I set it to sleep but when I get a txt message during the workout that starts the GPS recording again and then (even though the phone is set to go back to sleep after 1 minute and the phone does exactly that) it keeps recording once it started because of the message.
    There are programs that keep working in the background even though the phone is sent to sleep (for example the htc music player keeps playing even though I put it to sleep using the sleep button) and I found an interesting article about how to do that. Maybe you guys can take a look at it. It sounds like if SP would be programmed that way it wouldn’t matter if the phone goes to sleep and then everyone could just use the automatic settings of WM or even use the sleep mode button, SP would keep running and recording GPS data in the background.

    The link is:

    Other than that issue AWESOME APPLICATION!! Thanks for the efforts.

  13. Andre Says:

    I just found another forum thread where the issue and solutions (for example registry keys that keep the gps on in standby mode) are discussed.

    Also another GPS track software called GPS cycle computer seems to be able to keep recording while in standby. (Also in the thread)

    Thats the link:

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