Apple unveiled a number of welcome improvements to iPadOS, further blurring the line between tablet and computer.
Widgets, Search and Interface
Like iOS 14, iPadOS 14 gains improved widgets to help users get more from their Home Screen.
In addition, Search has been completely revamped to make it much more powerful on the iPad. The new Universal Search can much more effectively act as an app launcher.
Siri also gains the more streamlined interface that it receives on the iPhone. Similarly, FaceTime calls no longer take up the entire screen, blocking access to other apps. Instead, the incoming call appears in a small notification box at the top of the screen. This feature is also being implemented on iOS for the iPhone.
Apple is significantly improving the handwriting recognition on the iPad, closing the gap between handwriting and text input. The new handwriting engine, Scribble, can automatically clean up shapes drawn on the screen.
What’s more, Scribble makes it possible to use the Apple Pencil for input in any text field. When writing with the Pencil, text can be selected using the same tap gestures for manipulating traditional text.
More significantly, iPadOS will be able to recognize email addresses and phone numbers in handwriting and interact with them accordingly.
One of the biggest complaints about the iPad is the inability to change default apps for web browsing and email. It appears that iPadOS finally rectifies this. This will be a big improvement, especially in the enterprise, where many users prefer Outlook.
Stay tuned for Part 3: The Mac