iPadOS 15 gets widgets on the home screen, App Library and better multitasking
In addition to iOS 15, Apple today also announced the iPad 15, which will be coming to an iPad near you this fall following the usual developer testing and public beta testing phases.
With iPadOS 15, Apple introduces a larger widget format that should work better on the larger screens that tablets have compared to phones.
And yes, this means that home screen widgets have finally arrived on Apple tablets. The new widgets for iPadOS include Find Mine, Contacts, Packages and Game Center. Oh and guess what, the App library is there too when it was first introduced in iOS 14 and for some reason took a whole year to make it into iPads.
This is Apple’s version of an app drawer, it’s a dedicated screen that automatically sorts all the apps you’ve installed on your device so you do not have to scroll through a gazillion home screen to find a specific app. The app library is built into the Dock, so it’s easy to get to, no matter what screen you happen to be on.
There’s also a new multitasking user interface that lets you quickly create apps in full screen or open Split View or use Slide Over. In Split View, you can swipe down to replace an app with a new one on both sides, and the same thing works for apps with multiple windows.
Speaking of which, the new shelf gives you access to all open windows in any app – think multiple Safari windows and even windows paired with other apps in Split View. All of these new iPad multitasking features also get keyboard shortcuts.
The Notes app for iPad is also improved by getting support for reviews (to tag people so they can receive a notification) and a new Quick Notes feature that lets you quickly (hence the name) take notes on iPad, Mac or iPhone , captures content from other apps and sites if you need it.
The Translate app is on its way to corporate tablets for the first time in iPadOS 15, complete with automatic language translation of what you speak. There is also translation across the entire system that works throughout the operating system, including with live text.
Finally, with Swift Playgrounds, you can create apps on the iPad with enhanced code completion and a bunch of new libraries and guides, and when you’re done, you can send your app directly to the App Store from your tablet.
The first iPadOS 15 developer beta will be available later today, while the first public beta comes out in July.