Apple not only announced new hardware at the WWDC 2022 event but also previewed a bunch of software updates including iOS 16, iPadOS 16, and WatchOS 9. Talking about the new version of iPadOS, Apple has announced entirely new multitasking experience with Stage Manager and full external display support, new ways to collaborate via Messages, big updates to Mail and Safari, iCloud Shared Photo Library, pro features including Reference Mode and Display Zoom, and more.
New features in Messages make it easy to start collaborating and manage shared content across Files, Keynote, Numbers, Pages, Notes, Reminders, and Safari, as well as third-party apps. When users send an invitation to collaborate via Messages, everyone on the thread is automatically added to the document, spreadsheet, or project. When someone makes a change to a shared file, everyone can see updates right at the top of the Messages thread. And when a user is working on a collaborative project, they can easily jump into the associated Messages conversation or just tap to start a FaceTime call with their collaborators.
iPadOS 16 makes everyday messaging even better. Users can now edit or recall recently sent messages, recover recently deleted messages, and mark conversations as unread so they can come back to them later. Additionally, users can now begin a SharePlay session via Messages, so they can choose a shared activity — like a movie, TV show, workout, or game — and enjoy it together in sync while chatting via Messages.
Another new feature is Freeform. It is a powerful new collaboration app with a flexible canvas, giving users the ability to see, share, and collaborate all in one place without worrying about layouts and page sizes, and with full support for Apple Pencil. Users can view others’ contributions as they add content or make edits, all while enjoying a real-time collaboration space. Coming to iPadOS 16 later this year, Freeform allows collaborators to start a session from FaceTime and see the updates from others right in the Messages thread.
There are new updates for the Mail app as well. Users are now given a moment to cancel delivery of a message before it reaches a recipient’s inbox, schedule emails to be sent at the perfect moment, and move sent emails to the top of their inbox to quickly send a follow-up. Messages can also be resurfaced at any date and time with Remind Later, and users can get notified if they forget to include an important part of the message, like an attachment or recipient. Additionally, an all-new search experience delivers more complete and accurate results by correcting typos and using synonyms for the search terms, and allows users to see a richer view of contacts, shared content, and more.
Next, Apple has also announced iCloud Shared Photo Library, New Collaboration and Security Features in Safari, an all new Weather app designed for the iPad, updates to Live text and Visual lookup, Reference Mode, Display Zoom, redesigned gaming centre and much more.
Lastly, one of the most important new features of iPadOS 16 is Stage Manager where users can create overlapping windows of different sizes in a single view, drag and drop windows from the side, or open apps from the Dock to create groups of apps for faster, more flexible multitasking. The window of the app users are working on is displayed prominently in the centre, and other open apps and windows are arranged on the left-hand side in order of recency.
Available on iPad Pro and iPad Air with the M1 chip, Stage Manager also unlocks full external display support with resolutions of up to 6K, so users can arrange the ideal workspace, and work with up to four apps on iPad and four apps on the external display.
iPadOS 16 Availability
The developer preview of iPadOS 16 is available to Apple Developer Program members starting today, and a public beta will be available to iPadOS users next month. New software features will be available this fall as a free software update for iPad (5th generation and later), iPad mini (5th generation and later), iPad Air (3rd generation and later), and all iPad Pro models.
WatchOS 9 for Apple Watch introduces four new watch faces: Lunar, which depicts the relationship between the Gregorian calendar and lunar calendar, used in many cultures such as Chinese, Islamic, and Hebrew; Playtime, a dynamic piece of art that’s unique to Apple Watch and created in collaboration with artist Joi Fulton; Metropolitan, a classic, type-driven watch face where the style changes as the Digital Crown is rotated; and Astronomy, an original face that has been completely remastered and features a new star map and current cloud data.
watchOS 9 introduces enhanced and modernised complications on some of the most classic watch faces, such as Utility, Simple, and Activity Analog, along with background colour editing for Modular, Modular Compact, and X-Large for additional personalisation. The new Portraits face showcases the depth effect on more photos, including cats, dogs, and landscapes, while Chinese scripts have been added as options for California and Typograph watch faces. Focus now allows users to select an Apple Watch face to automatically appear when they start a specific Focus on iPhone, such as the Photos face during a Personal Focus, helping users stay in the moment.
The Workout app has been updated to provide richer metrics for measuring performance, as well as new training experiences to help users reach fitness goals. Interval training is an important part of any training plan, and in watchOS 9, the Workout app introduces Custom Workouts, which can be used to create a structured workout that can include work and rest intervals. New alerts, including pace, power, heart rate, and cadence, can be added to guide users throughout the workout.
Next, new running form metrics, including Stride Length, Ground Contact Time, and Vertical Oscillation, can all be added as metrics on Workout Views. These metrics appear in the Fitness app summary and in the Health app, where users can see trends over time and learn from patterns.
Kickboard detection has been added as a new stroke type for Pool Swim workouts, using sensor fusion on Apple Watch to automatically detect when users are swimming with a kickboard and classify the stroke type in the workout summary along with distance swam. Apple has also introduced updates to Fitness+ workouts, new Sleep insights, AFib history to detect potential signs of atrial fibrillation, new medication experience, enhanced privacy and much more.
WatchOS 9 Availability
The developer beta of watchOS 9 is available to Apple Developer Program members starting today. A public beta will be available to watchOS users next month. WatchOS 9 will be available this fall as a free software update for Apple Watch Series 4 or later paired with iPhone 8 or later and iPhone SE (second generation) or later, running iOS 16.