Apple unveils new iPadOS to power unique experiences designed for iPad

iPadOS features a new Home screen with more apps and a Today View for information at a glance.
iPadOS features a new Home screen with more apps and a Today View for information at a glance.
Dark Mode brings a dramatic look to iPad for an immersive visual experience.
Dark Mode brings a dramatic look to iPad for an immersive visual experience.

Apple today previewed iPadOS, the powerful operating system with a new name to recognize the distinctive experience of iPad. iPadOS builds on the same foundation as iOS, adding powerful new capabilities and intuitive features specific to the large display and versatility of iPad. Introducing new ways to work with apps in multiple windows, more information at a glance on a redesigned Home screen and more natural ways to use Apple Pencil, iPadOS also benefits from the great new updates in iOS 13, making it the perfect device for consumers and creative pros alike.

“iPad transforms how people work and express their creativity, and with iPadOS, we’re taking it even further by delivering exciting capabilities that take advantage of its large canvas and versatility,” said Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior vice president of Software Engineering, in a statement. “iPadOS delivers exciting features, including a new Home screen with widgets, more powerful multitasking and new tools that make using Apple Pencil even more natural.”

A redesigned tool palette adds tools, colors and shapes, enhancing creative possibilities with Apple Pencil.
A redesigned tool palette adds tools, colors and shapes, enhancing creative possibilities with Apple Pencil.

New Home Screen

The Home screen has been redesigned with a new layout to show more apps on each page. Today View can now be added to the Home screen, allowing quick access to widgets for at-a-glance information, including headlines, weather, calendar, events, tips and more.

Do More with Split View and Slide Over

iPad users can now work with multiple files and documents from the same app simultaneously with updates to Split View, or can quickly view and switch between multiple apps in Slide Over. For example, customers can compose an email while viewing another email side by side or access multiple apps like Messages or Calendar with just a swipe. App Exposé provides a quick view of just the open windows for any one app with a simple tap.

Quickly view and switch between multiple apps with updates to Slide Over.
Quickly view and switch between multiple apps with updates to Slide Over.

More Ways to Use Apple Pencil

With iPadOS, Apple Pencil is even more integrated into the iPad experience. Customers can now mark up and send entire webpages, documents or emails on iPad by swiping Apple Pencil from the corner of the screen. A redesigned tool palette gives quick access to tools, color palettes, shapes, object eraser, a new pixel eraser for removing any part of a stroke and a ruler for drawing perfectly straight lines. Apple Pencil feels even more natural, using advanced prediction algorithms and optimizations to reduce its industry-leading latency to as low as 9 milliseconds.

More Powerful Files App

The Files app is a central place to quickly access and manage documents, and with iPadOS, it gets even better with iCloud Drive support for folder sharing. Anyone with access to a shared folder will see it in iCloud Drive and will always have the ability to access the latest version. iPadOS also supports external drives, allowing users to easily plug in USB drives, SD cards or log into an SMB file server, all from within the Files app. A new Column View with high-resolution previews helps users navigate directories, while support for Quick Actions such as mark up, rotate and create PDF make it easy to be more productive on iPad. iPadOS also introduces local storage, zip and unzip, and new keyboard shortcuts.

Files adds support for external drives and SMB file servers for easy access and management of documents.
Files adds support for external drives and SMB file servers for easy access and management of documents.

Desktop-Class Browsing with Safari

Safari is more powerful than ever on iPad. iPadOS automatically presents the desktop version of the website, scaled appropriately for the iPad display, and optimizes it for touch, so web apps like Google Docs, Squarespace and WordPress work great in Safari on iPad. Safari also supports significant new features such as a download manager, 30 new keyboard shortcuts and enhancements to tab management.

Improved Text Editing

Text editing on iPad receives a major update with iPadOS, making it easier and faster to point with even more precision and speed, select text with just a swipe and use new gestures to cut, copy, paste and undo.

Additional iPadOS Features

• Dark Mode delivers a dramatic dark color scheme that looks great across the system and is easier on the eyes in low-light environments.

• Custom Fonts can be installed for use across the system, perfect for creating beautiful documents on iPad. Fonts from boutique and major vendors such as Adobe, DynaComware, Monotype, Morisawa and Founder will be available on the App Store.

• A new floating keyboard saves space and includes support for QuickPath — making one-handed typing easy and leaving more room to display apps. Customers can pinch in to enable the floating keyboard and drag it anywhere on the screen.

• Photos curates the library to highlight the best images, automatically hiding clutter and similar photos to showcase significant events from the past day, month or year. Photo editing is more intuitive with new tools that are easier to apply, adjust and review, and almost all photo editing capabilities are available for video editing.

• Sign In with Apple is a fast, easy and private way to sign in to apps and websites using Apple ID.

• Maps features a new basemap, built from the ground up: Look Around with beautiful street-level imagery of cities using high-resolution 3D photography; Collections for a new way to share restaurants, shops or destinations; and Favorites for quick navigation to frequent locations.

• Performance improvements make the entire system more responsive with faster Face ID unlock, and a new way to package iPad apps on the App Store that reduces download sizes by up to 50 percent, makes app updates up to 60 percent smaller, and results in apps launching up to twice as fast.

A new floating keyboard saves space and includes support for QuickPath.
A new floating keyboard saves space and includes support for QuickPath.


The developer preview of iPadOS is available to Apple Developer Program members at starting today, and a public beta program will be available to iPadOS users later this month at iPadOS will be available this fall as a free software update for iPad Air 2 and later, all iPad Pro models, iPad 5th generation and later and iPad mini 4 and later. For more information, visit Features are subject to change. Some features may not be available in all regions or all languages.

Source: Apple Inc.

MacDailyNews Take: Lucky 13!

Just giving a bit more to more advanced users would go a long way at the higher end (iPad Pro). Apple could have things like floating windows, file management, icon arrangement, and other “pro” features off by default, to be enabled by those who want them. — MacDailyNews, March 22, 2019

Imagine an “iOS Pro” mode.

Turn on iOS Pro on your iPad Pro
1. Tap Settings > General, and make sure iOS Pro is turned on.
2. There is no step two.

Hey, we can dream, can’t we?

Shouldn’t such a thing already exist? Where would iPad sales be if it did?MacDailyNews, December 29, 2015

The answer isn’t to try to make the iPad into a MacBook. The answer is to provide all the tools possible in iOS for developers to make robust apps that can take advantage of the multi-touch paradigm. — MacDailyNews, May 16, 2017

Take off the training wheels, Apple! After over a decade, we’re familiar with the touch paradigm already!MacDailyNews, January 8, 2019


    1. Sorry but iPad and iPhone already had two different UI’s for apps, and their OSes were already quite different, so how on earth is this “more” fragmentation. This is an answer to what literally millions of iPad owners have been clamoring for.

      1. He doesn’t understand the definition of fragmentation which is clear from the use of it simply as a buzzword to gee up the easily led, rather than as part of a considered point to back up his argument. Like the word ‘passion’ it’s a convenient overused tool for not having to (or being able to) actually explain yourself.

  1. Love that they opened up the i/o to external hard drives… been asking for this for year! AWESOME!
    Also love everything else they showed ! ( still no core user manageable file/folder sys.. thats left to the cloud files app, a bit of a bummer. .. )

    …. and for those who had been asking… there is mouse/trackpad support in the accessibility options as reported by some developers already !

    Overall very good presentation.!

    Thanks Tim and Team!

  2. Nobody asked for this, and no pro works this way. Apple – you have gone from being the guiding light of tech to officially being idiots. I don’t say that lightly, either. I don’t know if it’s bad management, dumb millennials, or what – but you have lost the plot in the extreme. The plot you used to write. Yep, Microsoft sucks, and Linux is unpredictable – they look better than you at this point. It’s pretty clear that all of Apple’s genius hinged on one person, which is sad and incredibly bad business. Nothing announced today was anything worth celebrating. Silicon Valley is either dying or dead already.

  3. I believe I’ll be beta testing this iOS. I can’t wait until fall to get my hands on it. I think Apple has done a really good job of adding a lot of really useful features. I’m especially eager to find out if a trackpad will work at some point. I can definitely see the benefit of being able to use that occasionally.

  4. From what the assistive features show mouse and trackpad support is fully in place and pretty good. At this point it largely replaces you fingers so swiping still occurs using the cursor but in several demos on you tube buttons can be remapped to your mouse. In an impressive demo the buttons on the mouse could click and drag, right click to long press on something, middle click for home button and finally use your thumb button as a back button. The assistive support doesn’t work in all games like fortnite, but for many games the feature is already working.

    1. Good news Chad. Wired and wireless mouse and trackpad support is delivered in iPadOS.

      It’s all over the Internet – just do a search for yourself to confirm – here’s the relevant Tweet, which in its tweet stream shows that iPhone and iPod touch has wired and wireless mouse support also.

  5. Thanks for the info. Think they would have mentioned it. That’s the only reason main reason my fellow employees don’t use and iPad. Thanks again for the info.

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