Is the iPad a device you can’t imagine existing without? Has the tablet segment become indispensable to you? If we simplify the situation, it’s bigger phones or dumber laptops. And judging by the iPadOS updates, it looks like Apple knows this yet doesn’t want to change much here. With tablets, in general, it’s pretty tough.

There are only a few Android ones that come out very randomly. Apple is at least a certain constant in this, although even with it, one cannot be quite sure when and what it will introduce.

But it is the market leader because its iPads are the best-selling tablets, but even so, currently quite poorly. After the covid boom came a cruel sobering, and the market is falling inexorably.

People have no reason to buy tablets anymore – either they already have them at home, they don’t have the money for them, or they don’t need them because they will be replaced by a phone and a computer.

iPadOS is still a young system

Originally, iPhones and iPads ran on one operating system, iOS, although Apple has just been adding a bit more functionality to iPads given their larger display.

But it was at WWDC 2019 that Apple announced iPadOS 13, which would eventually replace iOS 12 on its tablets. As time passed, the iOS variant for iPads included a growing set of distinct features that resembled the macOS world more than iOS, so Apple separated the worlds.

Still, they’re very similar because of their features and capabilities. So one would think that the features available on the iPhone should also be available on the iPad. But that’s not quite the case.

It’s become such an unpleasant tradition in recent years that iPadOS doesn’t get iOS news until the year after the system designed for iPhones comes out with it. But why is that?

At first glance, it seems that Apple doesn’t know where to take iPadOS, whether to keep it together with iOS or make it more like the desktop, i.e. macOS. So the current iPadOS is neither a strange hybrid that may or may not suit you.

It’s time for a change

The unveiling of iPadOS 17 will, of course, be made at WWDC23 in early June. Now we’ve learned that this system should bring the biggest news of iOS 16, which for some and unknown to us reason, was only available on iPhones.

This is, of course, lock screen editing. It will be a one-to-one conversion, just tuned to a larger display. So the next question is, why didn’t we see this new feature on iPads last year?

Maybe because Apple is testing it out on iPhones first, and also because it doesn’t have any news to bring to iPads, whether we’ll see Live Activities as well, we don’t know, but maybe in a future update, something “new” will come again.

With this approach alone, Apple is not adding to this segment either. But that’s not all. The Health app, which has been part of iOS for many years, should also arrive on iPads. But is it even necessary?

To have something written in the update’s description, of course, is. In this case, all Apple needs to do is tune the app to the big display, and it’s done. Four years of iPadOS clearly show little room to move it.

If Apple wants to hold on to the segment and not bury it completely, it should back off its claims and finally weave clearly through the world of iPads and Macs.

After all, iPads have the same chips as Apple’s computers, so this shouldn’t be a problem. Let him keep the iPadOs for the entry-level line, for example, and finally offer more of his adult operating system to the new machines (Air, Pro) with the next generation of custom chips.

Final thoughts

As of iPadOS 17, support for 2017+ iPads has been phased out. The new version of iPadOS will likely bring several new features that will be shared with iOS 17, although there may also be some iPad-specific features.

Potential new features in iPadOS 17 include accessing third-party app stores, active widgets, a redesigned Control Center, and possibly a new app for logging daily activities. Specific information about these features is not yet available.

The overall view of iPadOS 17 will become clearer after the start of WWDC 2023, where Apple usually provides a preview of the software update. Until then, we’ll be watching other iOS 17 and iPadOS 17 rumours to better understand the new features that will be added to Apple tablets later this year.

I’m most looking forward to when the native Apple Music Classical app for iPads arrives because, after all, the iPhone one looks comical on the iPad.