Apple’s iPad software is taking a huge step forward with multitasking, which the company just announced as a feature of iOS 9. This isn’t a feature new to tablets—we’ve seen in over on Samsung devices, and also from Microsoft. But, finally, Apple is giving iPad users the ability to run multiple apps on the same screen.
You simply double tap the home button and you’ll see the brand new task switcher. Choose an app, and then execute a new feature known as SlideOver, which allows users to quickly swipe in another app from the side. And then you can pull down from the top and bring in other applications, which are all fully interactive. Apple show how someone might browse the Web while also having a conversation through Messages.
You can resize these windows, drag and drop between apps, and also use gestures. Apps can either be 50 / 50 on screen, or 70 / 30. Unfortunately you won’t be able to resize the apps in multitasking exactly how you want, but, hey, baby steps.
Split View allows two apps to be open and active on the same screen. Developer APIs will be available for PiP, Slide Over and Split View, Apple said.
In addition to multitasking, Apple also said users can have a video play over other windows. So if you’re watching ESPN, and have multitasking up, you can actually watch a video over both apps, and move it around to the space you want. Again, not a new feature among tablets users (in the Android space), but it’s big for Apple users, and make the iPad a stronger standalone device.
Hmm, a lot of these features sound like something that would make sense on an iPad Pro. The SplitView feature will only be available on the iPad Air 2, but the SlideOver and PiP features will be available on iPad Air and up, along with the iPad mini 2 and up.