iPadOS 15: Widgets, App Library, Multitasking, Quick Notes, and more
Apple has unveiled iPadOS 15, a major update that brings Widgets and App Library to the iPad alongside Multitasking updates, a new Quick Notes feature, the ability to create iPhone and iPad apps using Swift Playgrounds, and more.
Announced at Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) on Monday, iPadOS 15 is set to release publicly later this year. The update sees Apple bring across the best of last year’s iOS 14 update for iPhone, including the ability to create Widgets for the device’s Home Screen, and the ability to the App Library to declutter and organize apps.
As rumored, iPadOS 15 improves working with multiple apps at once. With the update, a new multitasking menu appears at the top of apps, letting users go into Split View or Slide Over with just a tap.
Just like iOS 15, Apple has introduced improvements to FaceTime including SharePlay, a new feature that allows users to share content while connecting over FaceTime. For example, users can now share their screen during a call, listen to music and play video in sync, and view apps together.
SharePlay is built into Apple’s apps and is also coming to third-party apps, including Disney+, ESPN+, HBO Max, Hulu, MasterClass, Paramount+, Pluto TV, TikTok, Twitch.
Safari gets a new tab design that lets users see more of the page as they browse. 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 save and manage tabs, all syncing across Mac and iPhone. Safari on iPad also now supports web extensions, available from the App Store.
Quick Note is one of iPadOS 15’s big new features. Whether browsing in Safari or finding a restaurant on Yelp, users can bring up Quick Note anywhere to jot down a thought and add links, providing an easy way to get back to exactly what they were looking at.
iPadOS 15 includes Focus, a new feature that filters notifications and apps based on what a user wants to focus on. For example, a user can set their device to help them not get distracted by notifications during specified times of the day. Users can create Home Screen pages with apps and widgets that apply to moments of focus to only display relevant apps and reduce temptation. When a user’s Focus is blocking incoming notifications, their status is automatically displayed to others in Messages, reflecting that a user is not currently reachable.
Apple’s Translate app comes to iPad with iPadOS 15 with new features that make conversations easier and more natural. 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.
The update also includes updates to the Maps and Photos apps, as well as Swift Playgrounds 4 which will enable users to have the tools to build iPhone and iPad apps right on their iPad and submit them directly to the App Store for the very first time.