The iPad turned nine this year and it’s ready to leave iOS behind and move to its own thing. It’s unsurprisingly called iPadOS and comes with a bunch of new features mostly focused around productivity.
But first thing first – the homescreen has been redesigned to display a tighter grid of icons and support widgets.
The Slideover, which is Apple’s take on floating window apps,lets you swipe from the bottom and launch a second app in window mode. Split screen has also been improved and you can launch two instances of the same program.
Apple has implemented a bunch of gestures in iPadOS that let you control the split screen mode and launch it from within a single app, but it does look like learning all of them will take you a while.
Next up, iCloud Drive gained folder sharing and even SMB file sharing. The iPads will also support thumbdrives, with the contents showing in the Files app. Support for ZIP files is also coming down the road.
Safari has been optimized, too, getting a dedicated download manager and 30 keyboard shortcuts, putting it much closer to its desktop counterpart.
Copy and paste get their own three-finger pinch gestures, while Undo is performed by a three finger swipe, so you don’t have to shake the iPad any more.
Finally, the Apple Pencil got some love too – its latency will drop from 20ms to just 9ms, while its tools palette has been expanded and made available to third part apps.