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Pocket-lint - It leaked out this morning, but now it's official: The iPad is getting its own operating system, called iPadOS.
Apple has long positioned the iPad as a computer replacement, touting features like split screen and slide over.
But iPadOS kicks this up a notch with a new home screen featuring widgets that can expand alongside app icons.
Apple is also adding new multitasking gestures so you can slide between multiple apps and drag and drop apps side by side. There's a new Expose-like way to view apps, too.
The Files app will also support thumb drives, while iCloud Drive supports folder sharing. A lot of this, perhaps unsurprisingly, draws design inspiration from macOS.
Both represent two very different philosophies, and both have arguably been more powerful as multitasking workstations. But multitasking heralds the most significant changes.
On an iPhone, you just need to move between apps or share information between them, and it just needs to be quick and easy, because you might be walking down the street while talking to someone and trying to catch a train.
The iPhone augments your moment-to-moment activities without expecting your full, continuous focus, and that has implications for the optimal user experience.
The company has iterated on that initial push since, and iOS 13 marks a particularly aggressive reworking of how those and other aspects of multitasking work.
Apple has built upon previously existing concepts about spaces and app windows, and the biggest development is arguably the ability to open multiple windows from the same app, across multiple spaces, in various configurations.
The crux of much of what Apple has done with multitasking in iPadOS is centered around the management of windows.
These windows then live in spaces, either alone in fullscreen or next to other windows via the existing Slide Over or Split View. You can have up to three windows in view at once, however: two in Split View and one in either Slide Over or Picture-in-Picture.
You could even have three windows from the same app in view at once by this method. But the two-window views work nicely, just as they did in the previous version of iOS.
And the fact that you can hide and re-surface Slide Over windows makes a sort of half-measure to three windows possible. That was possible before, though.
There are several ways to open additional instances of an app in a new window, which can either open full screen or share a space with another application—again, even with another window from the same application.
I love the convenience of carrying a single hub with every type of connector I might need and support for the two types of memory cards I use the most.
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