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iPadOS 14 makes your iPad more like a Mac. How to use the new features



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iPadOS 14 adds some Mac-like features to Apple’s tablet.

Scott Stein / CNET

There is an argument to be made iPad is really a computer, just not in the traditional sense. It easily changes from a flat glass plate that you can tap, draw or sketch with one Apple Pencil the pen, to a laptop-like device, complete with a keyboard and trackpad when you need to do the work.

With the launch of iPadOS 14 and the upcoming version of MacOS Big Sur, the lines that separate a Mac and an iPad become blurred. You can install iOS 14 on your iPhone or iPadOS 14 on your iPad right now.

Apple’s iPadOS 14 adds lots of new features to its surfing platform, such as widgets with a new look and a more streamlined Siri, but there are also some tools that make the iPad more like a Mac than ever before. Here’s what they are and how to use them.






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A new and improved search tool

If you’ve ever used Mac’s Spotlight tool to perform quick searches, you’ll feel right at home with the new search tool on iPad. (To trigger Spotlight on a Mac, press Command and the space bar at the same time.)

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Search on iPadOS 14 is more powerful than it looks.

Apple

To be clear, there has been a search on the iPad, but before iPadOS 14, the interface took over the entire screen and the search results were somewhat limited. With the new search tool, there is now a small search field that appears – so that it did not open the entire screen.

The more streamlined bar looks a lot like Spotlight Search on the Mac. You activate it on the iPad by swiping down the screen from the home screen, or immediately CMD + space keyboard shortcut as on Mac.

Search can be used to find lots of things: files and folders in the Files app, emails and messages, apps you have installed or want to find in the App Store, music and podcasts. For example, you can enable Search while creating an email to find a file that you want to attach to your message. You can then drag and drop the file from the results directly to your email and attach it without moving between multiple apps. It is cruel.

You can also do what Apple calls knowledge search, which just means you can search for random things like “How long is Mount Everest?”, And the results appear directly in the search bar. You can even enter a URL, say CNET.com, then press the Return key and Search starts Safari to get you there.

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The new sidebar design digs the iPhone-like tabs along the bottom that we’ve seen use for far too long.

Apple

A new coat of paint that is very Mac-like

As iPad apps are updated for iPadOS 14, you’re starting to see them adopt a new design. Apple has added new iPad app layouts for developers to implement. The new design transitions iPad apps from looking like larger iPhones ($ 699 on Amazon) apps and more like Mac apps.

For example, iPadOS 14 has an updated music app, which has a new sidebar on the left side of the screen that contains buttons and links to various parts of the app – this replaces the tab-based navigation previously used in the music app, and is currently used in the iPhone version. The music app on the Mac has had the same design since it was released last year and has been refined MacOS Big Sur.

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The new iPad apps are starting to look more and more like an app that you find on a Mac.

Apple

You’re also starting to see a new toolbar icon in iPad apps that reveals and hides various aspects of the interface. For example, the toolbar button can slide the sidebar off the screen and then bring it back with a click, similar to the Hide button you see on Macs in apps like Finder.

Speaking of Finder, if you’re using a Mac, you’re familiar with the buttons at the top of a Finder window to do things like rearrange files or change the overall view. iPad apps can take a similar approach by adding a button, just like in the Finder, at the top of the screen that is used to change how the information you display is presented.

For example, tapping the drop-down menu in the Files app gives you options for changing the view of the files or folders you are currently viewing.

Surely there is more to be found in iPadOS 14 that promotes the transition from iPad to Mac, or is it Mac to iPad? I’m still trying to decide. If you have a favorite new iPad feature, let us know in the comments. We have also found new features you will love on your iPhone thanks to iOS 14and in three ways WatchOS 7 changes how you use your Apple Watch. But maybe ours favorite features in iOS 14 are the hidden features we’ve dug up.


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