Arguably the biggest software surprise of WWDC 2019 was iPad receiving its own platform. Apple announced iPad would be splitting off from iOS and will run on iPadOS going forward. They announced a developer beta for iPadOS 13.

iPadOS 13 Features

Apple announced a number of new features for iPadOS 13. Users can now have multiple windows per open application, in split views. There’s also new link previews when long-pressing. iPadOS 13 supports external disk drives and SD cards natively; just plug in and access from the Files app.

iCloud Drive now supports folder sharing, not just files. The new Files app includes column view which resembles macOS. Directories from attached storage show up in the Files app. For cameras, there’s a way to launch your favorite third-party image editor — like Lightroom — automatically.

Apple is also bringing “desktop-class” browsing to the iPad, with better compatibility for web-apps like Google Docs, Squarespace, and WordPress. In iPadOS 13,  Safari is also gaining new keyboard shortcuts and a download manager.

Apple is also adding custom font support to iPadOS. You can download font libraries from the App Store.

Apple Pencil latency is dropping from 20 milliseconds to 9 milliseconds for even more responsive interactions when using a digital stylus. Markup is integrated system-wide, so you can annotate a screenshot or an entire document. A PencilKit API is also available for third-party apps.

There’s a new compact layout keyboard mode for the iPad, which shrinks down the keyboard to only occupy a fraction of the screen space.

Mouse Support on iPadOS 13?

One of the rumored iOS 13 features was support for mouse input as an Accessibility option. While Apple didn’t mention it on stage, iPadOS 13 does indeed support mouse input as an AssistiveTouch option.

Mouse input in iPadOS 13 works much like you would expect it to, especially when you consider that it is an AssistiveTouch feature. The mouse cursor resembles other Assistive Touch input options, simulating a finger over the interface.

Mouse input on the iPad works with USB mice connected to the iPad’s Lightning or USB-C port. This includes Apple’s Magic Trackpad, allowing you to navigate through iPadOS without actually touching the display. It is enabled via the Accessibility menu in the iPadOS Settings app.

iPadOS 13 Release Date

iPadOS 13 is currently in beta, but the final version will be released for users this fall. It will be available for the following iPad models:

  • 12.9-inch iPad Pro
  • 11-inch iPad Pro
  • 10.5-inch iPad Pro
  • 9.7-inch iPad Pro
  • iPad (6th generation)
  • iPad (5th generation)
  • iPad mini (5th generation)
  • iPad mini 4
  • iPad Air (3rd generation)
  • iPad Air 2

Top Stories about iPadOS 13

iPadOS 13 Stories June 12

Official support for custom fonts came to iPhone and iPad with iOS 13/iPadOS 13, however, it’s a complex situation with one of the best (main) options requiring a paid Adobe Creative Cloud subscription. Today, Fontcase has launched as a great free open source app to bring custom fonts to your iPhone and iPad.

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iPadOS 13 Stories April 29

One of the most useful changes in iPadOS 13 last year was the ability to open multiple windows of the same application. Slowly but surely, more developers have added support for this feature to their applications, and now Microsoft is joining in as well.

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iPadOS 13 Stories March 24

Today Apple officially released iOS 13.4 and iPadOS 13.4. Although its version number indicates that this is an incremental release, coupled with the upcoming release of the Magic Keyboard for iPad Pro, it’s actually one of the biggest updates for the iPad that we’ve seen in quite some time.

The big news in iPadOS 13.4 is the arrival of advanced mouse and trackpad support for the iPad, features that 9to5Mac reported about in advance. Users can now pair a Magic Trackpad 2, Magic Mouse 2, or other third party pointing devices via Bluetooth, and instantly change the way they use their iPads.

Although the most outstanding things about this update are the aforementioned iPad changes, the iPhone gets some love as well. New features include the long-awaited release of iCloud Drive Folder Sharing, new Animoji Stickers, and more. Watch our brief hands-on video walkthrough as we discuss what’s new in iOS 13.4 expand full story

iOS 13.4: How to share iCloud Drive folders from iPhone and iPad

Improved collaboration for iCloud Drive arrives with iOS 13.4, iPadOS 13.4, and macOS Catalina 10.15.4. Follow along for how to share iCloud Drive folders from iPhone and iPad in the latest software releases.

iPadOS 13 Stories February 17

This is a very simple feature request: I’d like the ability to resize the iPad floating keyboard.

Currently, Apple gives us only two options: full width, or an iPhone-sized floating keyboard. On my 12.9-inch iPad Pro, the full-width one takes up too much screen space, while the floating one feels cramped. I’d like to be able to arbitrarily zoom it to any width…

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iPadOS 13 Stories February 12

The iPad 7, the latest generation entry-level iPad for the masses, is one of the best deals in tech at only $329, and often found for much less on sale. It’s the first entry-level iPad to feature Smart Connector support, allowing users to conveniently connect a Smart Keyboard. It also features a larger display with more on-screen real estate.

In this hands-on review, I discuss why the iPad 7 is indeed the best iPad for most people, and why it’s $329 entry-level price point is a steal given the amount of features packed inside this slab of aluminum and glass. expand full story

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