Inside iOS 9: Apple's iPad-exclusive split-screen multitasking will enhance productivity

Posted:
in iPad edited October 2015
With Apple's iOS 9 upgrade, the iPad lineup -- and the upcoming iPad Pro -- gets special attention to enhance productivity on the big-screen tablets, including an all-new split-screen multitasking mode that will allow users to more easily accomplish two tasks at once.


Slide Over

Multitasking two apps at once actually comes in two formats with iOS 9. The first and most basic is a feature Apple has dubbed "Slide Over," allowing users to quickly access a second app without leaving the one they're in.

To invoke Slide Over, users simply do an edge gesture, sliding their fingertip over the right edge of the screen. The first time this is done, a scrollable list of compatible Slide Over apps is presented, and tapping on one will open it.

In iOS 9, the native apps that support Slide Over are Tips, Contacts, Clock, iBooks, Mail, Reminders, Calendar, Find My iPhone, Podcasts, Find My Friends, Photos, Videos, Game Center, Safari, Messages, FaceTime, and notes.




Recently used apps are automatically displayed at the bottom of the Slide Over selection view, ascending from there for convenient access. After an application has been opened, users can slide their finger down from the top edge of the Slide Over view to select a different app.

When Slide Over is invoked, its space on the right side of the screen is the only part that can be interacted with, and the main task on the left side of the iPad display is darkened. Users simply swipe from the edge of the Slide Over view toward the right side of the screen to close the tray.

Split View




Owners of Apple's latest-generation iPad Air 2 -- and future iPad Pro owners -- gain an even more advanced multitasking method dubbed "Split View." After Slide Over has been activated, users can grab the left edge of the tray and drag it to divide the iPad display into two separate windows.

After enabling Split View, the iPad presents two different apps at once, and unlike with Side View, both applications can be interacted with at the same time.

This even applies to multitasking gestures: Users can use two fingers on the left side of the screen to zoom in and out on a map, while two fingers can simultaneously be used on the right side of the screen to zoom in and out on a Safari browser window, for example.




Apple also gives iPadowners the ability to resize the apps in Split View when in landscape mode. The default Split View gives a roughly 75/25 split in favor of the primary app, but dragging the divider to the left will instead display the two apps at 50/50 on the screen. A 50/50 view is not available in portrait mode.

Dragging the divider further to the left, in either portrait or landscape modes, will allow the secondary app to overtake the iPad Air 2 display and become the primary app. From here again, the user can swipe from the right side and once again invoke Slide Over to open another app if they so choose.




iOS 9 even remembers split windows in a persistent state. For example, a user can have Safari open with Notes on the left side, close them to the home screen, open another app, and then return to Safari, and the Split View with Notes will remain intact.

When in split view, the iPad will continue to display the status bar -- with time, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and battery --?in the left, primary app. The secondary app on the right side takes up the screen from top to bottom, with no status bar.
«13456

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 115
    hydrogenhydrogen Posts: 213member



    No way ... only women can do that ... and without IOS .... (NB : I am not a woman)

  • Reply 2 of 115
    knowitallknowitall Posts: 958member
    Maybe the big iPad can run 4 apps at the same time.
    Would be nice if we could run an unlimited number of apps at the same time.
  • Reply 3 of 115
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member
    From what I'm reading about this from those who have tested it out it seems like Apple nailed the implementation. Only thing missing appears to be being able to drag something from one app to the other. But I bet that will come soon. Fall can't come soon enough!
  • Reply 4 of 115
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member
    Does picture in picture only work with video? Or could it be used with, say, a podcast app or Spotify?
  • Reply 5 of 115
    ahmlcoahmlco Posts: 432member
    Something everyone should keep in mind is that this is primarily a developer's conference and as such we're seeing a lot of features related to things developers need to do, like support size classes in their apps.

    As such, the final iOS 9 release could have plenty of new features that we're only going to see during the next iPhone announcement.
  • Reply 6 of 115
    sog35sog35 Posts: 12,208member

    slide over looks fairly useless

  • Reply 7 of 115
    The average person will not use this feature so not that big of a deal. Should be great for some power users though.
  • Reply 8 of 115
    jason98jason98 Posts: 729member

    Too bad it is not available on iPhone 6 Plus.

  • Reply 9 of 115
    nolamacguynolamacguy Posts: 4,758member
    sog35 wrote: »
    slide over looks fairly useless

    I don't think so. I think it'll be very useful for Messages, as a better alternative to pull downing a message notification. instead, I swipe over and see my full conversation with often provides necessary context. tap my reply and return to safari.

    in any event, Apple has certainly earned the benefit of the doubt at this point.
  • Reply 10 of 115
    croprcropr Posts: 540member
    Nothing spectacular, we've seen this feature before on Windows 8 and on the Samsung tablets. For a change, Apple is copying a nice concept from others. Strangely, nobody here at AppleInsider calls this a knock off.
  • Reply 11 of 115
    jungmarkjungmark Posts: 6,324member
    knowitall wrote: »
    Maybe the big iPad can run 4 apps at the same time.
    Would be nice if we could run an unlimited number of apps at the same time.

    Why would you want to do that? So it'll drain your battery faster? Consume more data faster?
  • Reply 12 of 115
    nhughesnhughes Posts: 305editor
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post



    Does picture in picture only work with video? Or could it be used with, say, a podcast app or Spotify?



    Audio already plays in the background in iOS, with Spotify or any podcast app, and can be controlled through Control Center, so I'm not exactly sure what you're asking for. PIP is video only.

  • Reply 13 of 115
    knowitall wrote: »
    Maybe the big iPad can run 4 apps at the same time.
    Would be nice if we could run an unlimited number of apps at the same time.

    Four apps to unlimited number of apps...
    If "unlimited number" was possible, you would then ask to run "unlimited + 1" just to keep moving that goalpost.
  • Reply 14 of 115
    jungmark wrote: »
    Why would you want to do that? So it'll drain your battery faster? Consume more data faster?

    To keep perpetuating that narrative that iPad doesn't have enough RAM. By moving the goalposts, the iPad is perpetually slammed as inadequate. Surely you've caught on to these trolling tactics by now.
  • Reply 15 of 115
    cropr wrote: »
    Nothing spectacular, we've seen this feature before on Windows 8 and on the Samsung tablets. For a change, Apple is copying a nice concept from others. Strangely, nobody here at AppleInsider calls this a knock off.

    You just did.
  • Reply 16 of 115
    gumbigumbi Posts: 130member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post



    From what I'm reading about this from those who have tested it out it seems like Apple nailed the implementation.

     

    Well, considering that from the description this sounds like an almost exact copy of the original windows 8 implementation, they didn't have to try to hard to get it right...

  • Reply 17 of 115
    theothergeofftheothergeoff Posts: 1,982member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by knowitall View Post



    Maybe the big iPad can run 4 apps at the same time.

    Would be nice if we could run an unlimited number of apps at the same time.

    the smart people are arguing the limiting factor is CPU.  The Air2 has that 3rd CPU, thus giving it a lot more head room for processing.

    If that is the case, my guess is we'll have to wait until there is a 4-6-8 processor Ax chip before we see more concurency.   

     

    But your point about screen real estate is also needed.  That's probably part of the reason the iPhone 6's aren't going to allow concurrent displayed apps (again processors is part of this, especially with phones which must always allow for handling the chore of actually being a phone) [the other reason... Apple has made iPads too good.  They need to start creating reasons to upgrade more frequently than once every 4 years, so only the top top end will get these cool capabilities].

     

    Would be nice if we all won the lottery tonight too.  But it's not going to happen any time soon.  Part of it is designing a system that can be easy to use, part of it is not overengineering the system for the 1-5% of the people who can visually multitask.   The key 'job to be solved' here is, "I need to move information from one app(document/window), to another."  my guess is 90% of the users will find 2 concurrent apps plenty... and my guess 20-30% will find 2 or more apps on the same screen confusing.  

  • Reply 18 of 115
    john.bjohn.b Posts: 2,680member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by cropr View Post



    Nothing spectacular, we've seen this feature before on Windows 8 and on the Samsung tablets. For a change, Apple is copying a nice concept from others. Strangely, nobody here at AppleInsider calls this a knock off.

     

    At least the Apple implementation of split screen mode for tables is worthy of being an Apple feature.  Meaning it's intuitive and obvious, at least once you've seen it.  Not that they've all been homeruns (and frankly there have been too many pop flies of late), but quick access to my blue bubbles, notes and email is definitely hitting one out of the park.

     

    Bonus points for not needing a stylus.  ;-)

  • Reply 19 of 115
    mike1mike1 Posts: 1,156member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by cropr View Post



    Nothing spectacular, we've seen this feature before on Windows 8 and on the Samsung tablets. For a change, Apple is copying a nice concept from others. Strangely, nobody here at AppleInsider calls this a knock off.

    Yes. MS and Samsung Tablets that nobody has bought.

  • Reply 20 of 115
    gumbigumbi Posts: 130member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by John.B View Post

     

     

    At least the Apple implementation of split screen mode for tables is worthy of being an Apple feature.  Meaning it's intuitive and obvious, at least once you've seen it.  Not that they've all been homeruns (and frankly there have been too many pop flies of late), but quick access to my blue bubbles, notes and email is definitely hitting one out of the park.

     

    Bonus points for not needing a stylus.  ;-)


    The implementation is almost exactly the same as in windows 8 - which is also intuitive and obvious once you've seen it. 

     

    Face it, Apple whole sale copied this from existing implementations - slide over and split screen are almost entirely from Windows 8 and PIP, that's from Samsung.  I'm not saying that's a bad thing.

Sign In or Register to comment.