Activity Stack

As the user moves from activity to activity, across applications, the Android system keeps a linear navigation history of activities the user has visited. This is the activity stack, also known as the back stack. In general, when a user starts a new activity, it is added to the activity stack, so that pressing BACK displays the previous activity on the stack. However, the user cannot use the BACK key to go back further than the last visit to Home. The adding of an activity to the current stack happens whether or not that activity begins a new task (as long as that task was started without going Home), so going back can let the user go back to activities in previous tasks. The user can get to tasks earlier than the most recent Home by selecting its root activity from the application launcher, a shortcut, or the "Recent tasks" screen.

the Maps activity as a new task, and choosing a link in an email starts the Browser activity as a new task. In these cases, the BACK key will return to the previous activity in a different task (Email), because it was not started from Home.

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