We’re on the cusp of iPadOS 16.1 coming out on Monday and I couldn’t care less. iPadOS 16 is a big bag of…meh in the feature department. Sure I was excited about Stage Manager, but then they took away the only feature that improved working on an iPad.
No, Stage Manager wasn’t the feature that I was looking forward to. Trying to use it on my 12.9″ screen leaves me feeling like there is way too much UI going around and far too little of the stuff I’m working on is on screen. On the largest iPad screen available, I just end up building the Stage Manager version of two apps in split screen because there isn’t enough room to effectively use more than 2 apps at a time. This Stage Manager split screen takes up more space with UI than a standar split screen, so I don’t use it at all with the iPad screen.
I never really wanted overlapping windows either, I just wanted more control of how things layout on my screen. I can’t do anything with overlapping windows, except select one that’s peaking out in the background so that I can bring it to the front and then use it. I always wanted windows tiled so I could see more information at once, and the iPad screen is simply to small to make that happen.
Second Screen Support in iPadOS 16
Where Stage Manager was useful was when iPadOS 16 finally brought proper second screen support to iPadOS. With my email open and Soulver open beside it I could work in Numbers to do my receipts for the week. I could see what USD was converted to CAD so I could enter the CAD value in my spreadsheet because I could see Soulver, and my email on my external monitor and then Numbers on my iPad screen.
I could watch a full YouTube video on my external monitor and then take notes on it on my iPad screen. I could read Reddit in Apollo and grab links for my newsletter without needing to squint with my 42-year-old eyes to see what Reddit had of value.
I Don’t Care about iPadOS 16
While I realize that the slice of iPad users that have an M1 iPad and have a space to dedicate a desk/monitor to their iPad is small, until we get second screen support for iPad again I don’t care at all about iPadOS.
At this point I’ll keep looking at my iPad and fondly remember the short period where it finally felt like the software was starting to take advantage of my hardware investment. For now, the iPad is like a stagnant relationship. I just have to remember the times it was good and keep plowing on hoping that one day Apple decides to make the relationship with my iPad good again.
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