iPadOS 16: All The New Features, Release Date, & Supported Devices
Here’s everything we know about the iPad’s upcoming operating system–iPadOS 16.
Up until recently, the iPad and the iPhone ran the exact same operating system. However, beginning in 2019, Apple launched a dedicated operating system for the iPad called iPadOS.
iPadOS looks virtually identical to iOS and works almost the same way. But iPadOS contains some iPad-specific features that are not supported in iOS. These include features like mouse and trackpad support, Sidecar, and Universal Control.
Apple will launch the new iPadOS 16 this year with additional features limited to the iPad. Here’s everything we know about iPadOS 16 so far…
iPadOS 16: Release Date
iPadOS 16 was previewed at Apple’s Worldwide Developer’s Conference on June 6, 2022. WWDC 2022, which saw the unveiling of macOS 13, iOS 16, watchOS 9, and tvOS 16 as well.
The keynote took place on Monday, June 6, and developers got immediate access to the developer beta of iPadOS 16 when the keynote ended.
After the developer beta, Apple should launch an iPadOS 16 public beta in July. However, the final gold master version of iPadOS 16 that ships to consumers isn’t expected until the usual September timeframe.
iPadOS 16: Key Features
New Multitasking With Stage Manager
Probably the biggest new feature of iPadOS 16 is a new way to multitask. Apple calls this Stage Manager, and it’s a new organizational display for the open apps on your iPad.
Stage Manager lets you group apps into piles that live on the side of the home screen. These piles are meant to contain all the apps and their windows for whatever project you are working on. For example, you might have a Stage Manager pile for a research paper you are writing, and thus have Pages, Notes, and Safari in that pile.
Another pile might be for the budget you are working on, so that may contain Numbers, Safari, and Reminders.
But Stage Manager does more than just arrange apps into piles. It now lets you see multiple apps that overlap on your iPad’s screen for the first Tim ever. Yes, this is how most desktop operating systems work.
Stage Manager might be too cumbersome for most iPad users, but people who use the iPad as a laptop replacement sure will appreciate it.
Edit & Unsend Messages
A long-requested feature regarding the Messages app is finally arriving on iPadOS 16. Now users will be able to edit their messages in the Messages app. This is a feature that the iMessage user base has been clamoring for for years.
Another nice improvement is that you can now also unsend a message you send in Messages. That’s right, you can effectively delete a sent message. However, there are time limits applied to both editing a message and unsending it. You must do either within 15 minutes of the original message being sent.
Okay, for lots of people this new feature will be the only reason they need to install iPadOS 16. iPadOS 16 is FINALLY adding the Weather app to the iPad. This is the first time Apple has included a Weather app on the iPad in its history.
The Weather app takes all its design cues from the iPhone’s Weather app – but takes advantage of the iPad’s bigger screen. It looks absolutely gorgeous and makes us that much more excited about iPadOS 16.
Major Live Text Improvements
Live Text is a feature that was first added to the iPad last year with iPadOS 15. It effectively adds optical character recognition to the iPad. You can select the text in a photo just like you would in a Word document.
But Liv eText is expanding its capabilities in iPadOS 16. For starters, Live Text now works with videos too–yep, you can select and copy text right out of a video. You can also do more with Live Text, such as getting a currency conversion or language translation of the selected Live Text with just a few taps.
Undo Send & Schedule Emails
The Mail app is also getting a nice set of upgrades in iPadOS 16. For starters, Mail now offers a much-improved search function so you can quickly find the emails you are looking for. But Mail is also adding a bunch of other new features.
These include the ability to unsend a sent email (for a limited time after the email is sent), schedule emails to be sent at a later time, and include rich links in emails (much like you can in Messages.
Mail will also now remind you if you are about to send an email but appear to have forgotten to add an attachment you meant to add.
iPadOS 16: Supported Devices
Currently, iPadOS 15 supports a ton of iPads – ones going back to the iPad Air 2 from 2014. It also supports the iPad mini 4 from 2015. However, it’s likely that iPadOS 16 could drop support for those two oldest supported devices due to their aging processors. The iPad Air 2 has the A8X processor and the iPad mini 4 has the A8 processor. While amazing in the day, A8-series chips are now pretty archaic.
If Apple does drop support for the iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 4 in iPadOS 16, then we expect the following iPads to support the new operating system:
- iPad Pro 12.9-inch (5th generation)
- iPad Pro 11-inch (3rd generation)
- iPad Pro 12.9-inch (4th generation)
- iPad Pro 11-inch (2nd generation)
- iPad Pro 12.9-inch (3rd generation)
- iPad Pro 11-inch (1st generation)
- iPad Pro 12.9-inch (2nd generation)
- iPad Pro 12.9-inch (1st generation)
- iPad Pro 10.5-inch
- iPad Pro 9.7-inch
- iPad (9th generation)
- iPad (8th generation)
- iPad (7th generation)
- iPad (6th generation)
- iPad (5th generation)
- iPad mini (6th generation)
- iPad mini (5th generation)
- iPad Air (5th generation)
- iPad Air (4th generation)
- iPad Air (3rd generation)
iPadOS 16: Pre-WWDC Rumors
Right now even less is known about what iPadOS 16 will bring than iOS 16–and there’s not much known about the iPhone’s next operating system at this time.
Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman says iOS 16 will feature revamped notifications, so that is a feature we can likely expect to see in iPadOS 16 as well.
As for a complete user interface refresh? That’s reportedly not on the cards for iOS 16, so don’t expect a UI overhaul in iPadOS 16 either.
What may be a new feature specific to iPadOS 16 is an overhauled multitasking interface. The Multitasking features of iPadOS currently include things like Split View and Slide Over. However, we don’t know what these new multitasking features will entail, specifically.
We’ll keep this article updated as new leaks emerge about iPadOS 16.
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