iPadOS 16 was recently announced and it includes a ton of major improvements to multitasking, new display modes, and even supports an external display. While enhancements to native apps like Messages, Mail, Safari, etc will be available for all iPad models, Apple is keeping some features exclusive to iPads with Apple Silicon like the M1 iPad Air and the M1 iPad Pro.
M1 iPad Air and iPad Pro users will get getting these exclusive iPadOS 16 features in the fall
One of the highlights of iPadOS 16 is Stage Manager which takes multitasking on the tablet to a whole new level. Unfortunately for some, Stage Manager is exclusive to the M1 iPad Air and M1 iPad Pro.
The feature automatically organizes apps and windows, making it quick and easy to switch between tasks. It even allows users to create overlapping windows of different sizes in a single view. Users can even drag and drop windows from the side, or open apps from the Dock to create groups of apps for a seamless, more efficient workflow. As per Apple, “The window of the app users are working on is displayed prominently in the center, and other open apps and windows are arranged on the left-hand side in order of recency.”
Now, let’s talk about external display support on iPadOS 16. Apple says it is only available on iPad Pro and iPad Air with the M1 chip. With external display support, iPad owners can connect to displays with resolutions of up to 6K, allowing them to work with eight apps at the same time. Users can also drag and drop files between the two devices.
Apple is taking exclusivity a step further with Reference Mode which only works with the 12.9-inch iPad Pro with Liquid Retina XDR display. The feature enables the iPad to “match the color requirements in workflows like review and approve, color grading, and compositing, where accurate colors and consistent image quality are critical.”
Some iPadOS 16 accessibility features are also exclusive to 2020 iPad Pro models or newer like the new Magnifier mode that delivers richer descriptions of surroundings. The feature includes Door Detection, People Detection, and Image Descriptions.
Finally, we have Virtual Memory Swap which enables iPad storage to be expanded up to 16 gigabytes for all apps. Virtual Memory Swap only works with an M1 iPad Pro. If you have an iPad Air 4, it must be the 256GB storage variant or it will not be compatible with the feature.
The software update will be released to the general public in the fall alongside the iPhone 14 lineup. The first developer beta of iPadOS 16 has been released for developers and a public beta will become available in July.
Check out the macOS Ventura features that will only come to Apple Silicon Macs here.