Alongside the iOS 14, Apple released the iPadOS 14 at the annual Worldwide Developers Conference on 22nd June. Although there was no live audience to cheer this news, yet the feature list has plenty to cheer in itself. Although most of the features are based on the iPhone’s latest OS, there are some iPad exclusive ones as well. Add to it a few macOS visual updates as well, and the update looks far more polished than ever before.
Some of the noteworthy features include changes to the widgets functionalities (with some limitations), the addition of a sidebar, changes to Siri both from visual overhaul and addition of some new features, and the Scribble feature of Apple pencil. Apart from that, there are other noticeable changes like pinning a sender in the Messages and some much-needed changes to the Apple Maps. With that said, let’s check out the iPadOS 14 release date, compatibility, availability, and all the features in-depth.
iPadOS 14 Release Date
The iPadOS 14 Beta is already live but for the time being it is recommended only for the developers. If you wish to try it out, you might have to shell out some bucks and become a part of the Apple Developer Program. In the month of July, Apple will make way for a public beta testing, which could be tried out by the tech enthusiasts. As far as the stable build goes, we guess it might land anywhere in the month of September this year.
iPadOS 14 Compatibility
It should come as no surprise that all the iPad that received iPadOS 13 are part of the iPadOS 14 support list. While there were some skeptics regarding the older iPad Mini 4 and iPad Air 2, yet its good to see that they belong to this list. On that note, here’s the complete compatibility list.
- 11-inch iPad Pro (2020)
- iPad (7th, 6th, 5th generation)
- 10.5-inch iPad Pro (2017)
- 9.7-inch iPad Pro
- iPad mini 4
- iPad mini (5th generation)
- 12.9-inch iPad Pro (2020, 2019, 2018, 2017)
- iPad Air (3rd generation)
- iPad Air 2
iPadOS 14 Features
There are pretty nifty and impressive features that have made its way over to the latest iPadOS. Most of them are directly taken from iOS 14, which should surprise absolutely, no one. Likewise, there are some iPad exclusive features. Let’s check them out.
Let’s first address the elephant in the room, shall we? One of the most talked-about features coming out of the iOS 14 was the ability to add widgets to any of your home screens. Although the feature has been added to iPadOS 14, not in its entirely. In the latter, you could only place these widgets on the first page, that too to the left of the display.
This is the Today View sidebar which only appears when the view is set to the landscape mode. When you switch over to the portrait mode, widgets and the Today View disappears and the app gets automatically arranged.
However, the good thing is that it has retained some of the important widgets functionalities that the iPhone users would be enjoying. These include the ability to create the Smart Stack of widgets. The Artificial Intelligence technology will automatically create a collection of widgets and stack them up based on your interaction with your iPad, the time, and the place of your stay.
To improve your navigation experience, Apple has added a sidebar to some of its default apps in the iPadOS 14 update. This is similar to what macOS has in the form of a bar to the side of the finder windows, from which you could access all the windows. So now you could quickly access the app’s functions without the need to turn away your attention as to what you are doing. These quick access features and pull-down menus could be found in the default Photos, Notes, and the Files app.
If there’s someone in your contact list with whom you frequently interact with, you could now pin that contact at the top. Another pretty useful feature is the ability to @someone in group chats. This will make them directly aware of the message that they need to look into, rather than going through an ocean of messages. Similarly, you could use inline replies to specific messages in group chats. Add to it, there are 20 new hair and headwear styles (and not to forget to the mask) for the Memoji styles in the iPadOS 14 update as well.
Exclusive to your iPad, the new update has given more power to the Apple pencil. For example, you could now scribble or draw a thing on the text field, and your iPad will convert it to the actual text. You could then send it a document to someone, take a print out of it among other things. To erase any part of your text or drawing, just scratch over it and your good to go.
Talking about drawing, Apple does it a pretty neat job in identifying most of the shapes you draw. So you no longer need to give your drawing an artistic touch, just do a rough sketch and let the OS do the rest for you. So if you always preferred to use your screen for typing, rather than the keyboard, then this iPadOS 14 update should meet all your needs.
There are some changes to the way you viewed the most common and frequently used apps on your iPad. To begin with, the Search bar, Siri, Phone calls, and Face times would no longer cover the entire portion of your screen. In case of Siri, it wouldn’t take over the entire screen, rather you will notice a small Siri icon at the bottom of your screen.
Likewise, the Search bar would only appear as a bar at the top of the display, it wouldn’t hide the entire background of the app or document. Similarly, calls and face time would also be presented as a small bar at the top, which you could simply swipe up to hide, apart from accepting or rejecting the call.
Whether Apple Maps could really compete with Google Maps is still up for debate, but its nice to see Apple making some improvements frequently. With iPadOS 14, not only for the regular users but there’s something to cheer about for the electric car owners and cyclists as well. There is the addition of Guides that will help you out in learning about the place you are about to visit or currently stranded in. Then for the cyclists, they could be notified when there’s a slope and even the electric car owners could now be aware of the charging station locations.
There might have been an instance where you didn’t want to download and install the app as a whole, but just wished to use its one or two features. Well, App Clips just about makes it possible. It will throw open a small card of an app through which you could use some of its features. There are quite a few ways of accessing it. For example, if someone has mentioned the same in the Message. You could also make use of the NFC or Near Field Communication tags to access the App Clips.
As of now, the App library feature, which automatically categorizes apps based on their usage, is missing from iPadOS 14. Apart from that we already highlighted the fact that you cannot place widgets on your desired home pages. These are some of the shortcomings that we hope Apple might address later. Considering that it is an early release of a beta build, chances for improvements and optimizes are well and truly there.
Well, its just the early beta preview and we hope that these missing features will be addressed on the future builds. On that note, do let us know your views about the latest iPadOS 14 update in the comments section. Has the update been able to meet your needs, or has Apple missed a trick or two? Drop-in your opinions about the same and bookmark this page for the latest iPad updates! On that note, don’t miss out on our iPhone Tips and Tricks, PC tips and tricks, and Android Tips and Trick section too.