WWDC 2021: How iPadOS 15 Will Enhance Your Productivity

iPadOS 15

What a big day for Apple! At the company’s latest developer conference, we got to see a preview of updated software and operating systems. We’ve covered privacy and iOS 15; here is what customers will see with iPadOS 15.

iPadOS 15 Features

  • Multitasking: A new multitasking menu appears at the top of apps, letting users go into Split View or Slide Over with just a tap. Users now have quick access to the Home Screen when using Split View, making it easier to get to the right app.
  • Home Screen: Users can now place widgets among apps on Home Screen pages, providing more information at a glance and offering a more personalized experience. Also coming to iPad is the App Library, automatically organizing apps into helpful categories.
  • Apple Notes: Notes goes systemwide with Quick Note, a fast and easy way to take notes anywhere across the system. Notes also has new ways to organize, collaborate, and capture information. Tags make it easy to categorize notes and find them quickly with an all-new Tag Browser and tag-based Smart Folders.
  • Safari: A new tab bar takes on the color of the webpage and combines tabs, the toolbar, and the search field into a single, compact design. Tab Groups offer a new way to easily save and manage tabs — great for planning trips, shopping, or storing frequently visited tabs.
  • Translate: When using the Translate app, Auto Translate detects when someone is speaking, and in which language, so users can converse naturally without having to tap a microphone button. Text can now be translated anywhere on iPad by selecting it and tapping Translate, and handwritten text can also be translated.
  • Swift Playgrounds: With Swift Playgrounds 4, developers have the tools to build iPhone and iPad apps right on their iPad and submit them directly to the App Store.
  • Universal Control: This lets users work with a single mouse and keyboard to move between iPad and Mac for a seamless experience, with no setup required. Users can even drag and drop content back and forth between devices — great for sketching a drawing with Apple Pencil on iPad and placing it into a Keynote slide on Mac.

Developers can download the first iPadOS 15 beta today, and public betas will be available in July 2021.

One thought on “WWDC 2021: How iPadOS 15 Will Enhance Your Productivity

  • Andrew:
    I‘ve been ricocheting between delight and remorse between my selection of the 12.9” iPad Pro 2021 to replace my still excellent 2018 11” model. Apart from the desire to play with the new Liquid Retina XDR display, an option only offered on the 12.9” model this year, in favour of the larger screen is the often-rumoured superior multitasking experience on the 12.9” model. 
    WWDC was going to be the decider as to whether or not I would hold to that choice, given as my order has not yet shipped, and I can still change it. I have seen the side by side screen shots of split view and slide over content on both screen sizes, and there is more content on the larger screen. The key question, apart from how frequently one uses that feature (I use both regularly), is the ease with which these are activated. iPadOS 15 is going to make these features substantially easier, at least as advertised and demonstrated. 
    Thus, I will be sticking with my 12.9” device, even though I really much prefer the 11” size for portability, and deep down, feel that it just plain sucks that the Liquid Retina XDR display is not an option for the smaller iPad Pro. 
    Swift Playgrounds addresses a longstanding developer demand, at least ever since the very capable 2018 iPad Pro, to be able to code directly on the iPad Pro, rather than having to develop on macOS for iPadOS apps. Those developers wanting to work exclusively on their iPad Pro just got their wish granted. 
    Universal control is also nice, however I routinely compose on my iPad Pro, and via iCloud, will have Pages open on my MBP and simply do things like add to my bibliography on Endnote in macOS, which does not work in iPadOS, and have it automatically update on the iPad. Magic. Except that it’s technology. I am looking forward to playing with this new feature. 

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