|Written in||C, C++, Objective-C, Swift|
|OS family||Unix-like, based on Darwin (BSD), iOS|
|Source model||Closed source|
|Initial release||Fall 2019|
|Latest preview||13.0 developer beta 8 (17A5572a) (August 21, 2019 ) [±]|
|Marketing target||Tablet computers|
|Available in||40 languages|
|Kernel type||Hybrid (XNU)|
|Default user interface||Cocoa Touch (multi-touch, GUI)|
|License||Proprietary software except for open-source components|
|Preceded by||iOS 12|
|In public beta stage|
iPadOS is an upcoming mobile operating system created and developed by Apple Inc. specifically for their iPad line of tablet computers. It was announced at Apple's 2019 Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC).
When the first iPad was released in 2010, it ran iPhone OS 3.2. The operating system, which had so far been used on the iPhone and iPod Touch, was rebranded to iOS with the release of iOS 4. While the iPhone and iPad initially had feature parity, the iPad continued to receive a growing set of differentiating features not available on the iPhone—such as picture-in-picture and the ability to display multiple running apps simultaneously, which were introduced with iOS 9 in 2015. iOS 11, released in 2017, added drag and drop and a dock more similar to the one on macOS than that for the iPhone.
In order to emphasize the exclusive set of features available for the iPad, Apple announced at WWDC 2019 that the variant of iOS that runs on iPad devices would be rebranded to iPadOS, starting in 2019 with iPadOS 13.
Unlike previous versions of iOS, the icon grid displays up to five rows and six columns of apps, regardless of whether the device is in portrait or landscape orientation. The first page of the home screen can be configured to show a column of widgets from applications for easy access. Spotlight Search is no longer part of the widgets but can still be accessed by swiping down from the center of the home screen or pressing Command + Space on a connected keyboard.
iPadOS features a robust multitasking system, with features like Slide Over and Split View that make it possible to use multiple different applications simultaneously. Double-clicking the Home Button or swiping up from the bottom of the screen and pausing will display all currently active spaces. Each space can feature a single app, or a Split View featuring two apps. The user can also swipe left or right on the Home Indicator to go between spaces at any time, or swipe left/right with four fingers.
While using an app, swiping up slightly from the bottom edge of the screen will summon the Dock, where apps stored within can be dragged to different areas of the current space to be opened in either Split View or Slide Over. Dragging an app to the left or right edge of the screen will create a Split View, which will allow both apps to be used side-by-side. The size of the two apps in Split View can be adjusted by dragging a pill shaped icon in the center of the vertical divider and dragging the divider all the way to one side of the screen closes the respective app. If the user drags an app from the dock over the current app, it will create a floating window called Slide Over which can be dragged to either the left or right side of the screen. A Slide Over window can be hidden by swiping it off the right side of the screen, and swiping left from the right edge of the screen will restore it. Slide Over apps can also be cycled between by swiping left or right on the Home Indicator in the Slide Over window and pulling up on it will open an app switcher for Slide Over windows. A pill shaped icon at the top of apps in Split View or Slide Over allows them to be switched in an out of Split View and Slide Over.
In many applications, a notable exception being YouTube, playing videos can be shrunk down into a picture-in-picture window so the user can continue watching it while using other apps. This window containing the video can be resized by pinching and spreading and can be docked to any of the four corners of the screen. It can also be hidden by swiping it off the side of the screen and is denoted by an arrow at the edge where the video is hidden and swiping it will bring it back onscreen.
Sidecar allows for an iPad to function as a second monitor for macOS and is named as such due to the setup's resemblance to articulated motorcycles. When using Sidecar, the Apple Pencil can be used to emulate a graphics tablet for applications like Photoshop.
iPadOS will allow external storage, such as SD cards, portable hard drives and solid state drives, to be connected to an iPad via the Files app. The iPad Pro 3 will connect over USB-C but the Lightning camera connection kit also works to connect external drives with previous iPads.
iPadOS supports iPads with an Apple A8 / A8X chip or later. The software drops support for devices with 1GB of RAM including iPad Air, iPad Mini 2 and iPad Mini 3. Devices supported by iPadOS include:
- iPad Air 2
- iPad Air (3rd generation)
- iPad (5th generation)
- iPad (6th generation)
- iPad Mini 4
- iPad Mini (5th generation)
- iPad Pro (all models)
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