iPadOS 15 Multitasking | New Features and Changes You Will Want to Learn

iPadOS 15 Multitasking Shelf 3 Credit: Apple
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This year, iPadOS 15 won Apple’s Worldwide Developer Conference. Not that iOS 15 doesn’t have some really cool features, but the iPad is finally getting a few innovations that will change how you use your tablet. One great example is in multitasking. The iPad has always been the go-to Apple device when it comes to multitasking, and now, Apple is completely changing it for the better. But before you start multitasking like a pro, you need to understand what’s changed in iPadOS 15. Here’s what’s you need to know.

You Can Still Use the Same Old Split View and Slide Over

There’s some good news for those of us who don’t like change. You can still access and use Slide Over and Split View in the same way you did before: dragging and dropping apps on the left or right side of your screen. The good news is that, with iPadOS 15, both Slide Over and Split View feel more intuitive and quicker than before, so you’ll still see the benefits of the new software update even if you don’t want to change how you do things.

So What’s Changed? 

The first thing you’ll notice when updating to iPadOS 15 is that now all apps will have a small button with three dots at the top. This is the new multitasking button, which lets you access Split View or Slide Over with just a simple tap. Granted, you might need to press the button a couple of times before it reacts, but that’s likely a bug in the beta software at the time of writing.

When you tap it, you’ll see three icons. On the left there’s the full screen button, which will let you exit Split View or Slide Over.

The Split View button is right in the middle. Once you press it, the app you’re on will make an animation and go to the right side of your screen. You can then choose the other app you want to use in Split View. 

Last but not least, the Slide Over button. Just like in Split View, once you choose it, you’ll go to the Home Screen to choose which app you want to use. Keep in mind that the app where you press the Split Slide Over button will be the one that’ll become a floating app.

Can’t see the buttons? There are some apps that can’t be used in Split View or Slide Over. These apps don’t have any buttons at the top, and you’ll get a message saying Split View or Slide Over is not supported. 

Other ways to Use Split View

Split View is the most used feature on the iPad, and Apple knows this. That’s why there are so many ways to use Split View. In addition to the new Split View button, you can also create a Split View by sliding from the top of your screen where the three-dot button is.

Just like with the Split View button, the app you’re on will hide on the left or right side of your screen, and you’ll go to Home Screen, where you’ll need to choose the other app.

Additionally, you can also create a Split View when you’re on the App Switcher. After you open the App Switcher by sliding up, you can drag and drop one app on top of the other, and you’ll automatically create a Split View of both apps you choose. You can do this with as many apps as you want too. 

Now You Can Also Use Shelf

Apple also added a new feature called Shelf. This feature lets you open and manage different windows of the same app. That way, you can have multiple Split View windows of the same app without losing your progress on any of them. 

As of right now, Shelf doesn’t work with every app on the iPad. It works great with apps like Safari and the Notes app, but most third-party apps don’t support Shelf. At least not right now.

It’s possible that we’ll see some more Shelf support when iPadOS 15 becomes available to everyone, but as of right now, first-party apps will do. 

There Are New Keyboard Shortcuts Too!

With iPadOS 15, you’ll also be able to make use of some multitasking keyboard shortcuts that make the iPad even easier to use without touching the screen. If you have an iPad Magic Keyboard, there are a few shortcuts you might want to start using right away. 

  1. Open App Switcher: Globe + Up Arrow
  2. Switch between your open apps: Globe + Left or Right Arrow
  3. Move one app from the left to the right side in Split View: Control + Globe + Right Arrow
  4. Move one app from the right to the left side in Split View: Control + Globe + Left Arrow
  5. Move the Slide Over App to the left: Option + Globe + Left Arrow
  6. Move the Slide Over App to the right: Option + Globe + Right Arrow
  7. Open the Shelf: Globe + Down Arrow
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