Stage Manager for iPadOS 16 limited to M1 over memory, storage speed requirements

Posted:
in iPad edited June 2022
Apple has provided more explanation for why Stage Manager for iPadOS 16 is only available on M1-equipped iPads, with memory, storage speed, and the connection to an external display behind the decision.




Stage Manager is a feature of iPadOS 16 that adds overlapping windows to the multitasking interface, along with better organization and quick switching between apps. The feature is also one that is exclusively used on external displays, connected using the USB-C port.

However, the feature is limited only to M1 iPad models, namely the 12.9-inch iPad Pro, the 11-inch iPad Pro, and the iPad Air 5. An initial explanation for the limitation was issued on June 8, but Apple has since offered a more full statement on the matter.

Shared on Twitter by Rene Ritchie, Apple explains by initially outlining "Stage Manager is a fully integrated experience that provides all-new windowing experience that is incredibly fast and responsive and allow users to run 8 apps simultaneously across iPad and an external display with up to 6K resolution."

"Delivering this experience with the immediacy users expect from iPad's touch-first experience requires large internal memory, incredibly fast storage, and flexible external display I/O, all of which are delivered by iPads with the M1 chip," the statement continues.

In a previous explanation, Apple said Stage Manager required the fast memory swap feature in the new iPadOS to function, which converts free flash storage into makeshift RAM. As a resource-intensive environment, Apple reasoned that it required the power of the M1 processor.

Read on AppleInsider

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 17
    KotzelKotzel Posts: 3member
    I still think Apple alienated all IPad Pro owners outside the M1 variants. I’m trying not to be upset or cry over it.

    Still as an 2018 iPad Pro user I’m disappointed, but I’ll get it over. The thing is I’m demoting my iPad Pro to a status of “will never be greater than what it is right now” :(  Apple, I think that’s a big (iPad) problem..

    yet I will live… but apple “ I won’t buy another iPad for a very very long time” 
    edited June 2022 mobirdwilliamlondonnewisneverenough
  • Reply 2 of 17
    racerhomie3racerhomie3 Posts: 1,264member
    Jailbreak tweaks on iOS 5 had similar responsive multitasking features including floating windows.
    williamlondonlkrupp
  • Reply 3 of 17
    I’m missing the consternation over this. I have a 2020 iPad Pro, so I’m not getting stage manager. Is it a bummer, sure. But I looked into it and my iPad isn’t actually losing any functionality and it will actually gain functionality with iPadOS 16. So…… bummed but hardly going to get into hysterical hyperbole. 
    JFC_PAjony0watto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 17
    JFC_PAJFC_PA Posts: 934member
    If it’s not a flat out hardware incompatibility I’d prefer to judge the lower performance myself. 

    “Never buy,.,”? Unless you can swap out the guts what you buy is always what you’ve got. 

    And at some point even though software will run, the performance just doesn’t allow function; and that ride is over. And with Apple my experience is that’s usually a pleasingly long time. 
    edited June 2022 StrangeDayswatto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 17
    mobirdmobird Posts: 756member
    Everyone should know by now that Apple was going to introduce the Great Divide, that is, the Apple Silicon systems (A series, M1, M2 series, etc.), Something akin to the "haves and the have-nots. More choices and features for everyone, just do your due diligence prior to making a purchase.
    geekmeewatto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 17
    Anilu_777Anilu_777 Posts: 552member
    My 2017 Pro won’t get it and not surprised. Thinking I’ll wait another year though to see what comes in 2023 - maybe an M2 Air. I’m not sure that the M1 Air will have the speed and longevity of the M1 Pro. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 17
    I have an M1 iPad Pro but I can’t imagine that I would use Stage Manager. I just don’t see a need for it in my case.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 17

    “The feature is also one that is exclusively used on external displays”


    Nope. Works just fine on an M1 Pro display, no external display needed.
    Alex1NDBSyncwatto_cobra
  • Reply 9 of 17
    crowleycrowley Posts: 10,453member
  • Reply 10 of 17
    stolstol Posts: 12member
    crowley said:
    Of course it got removed, it shows the same feature running on a 2005 Mac!
  • Reply 11 of 17
    avon b7avon b7 Posts: 7,815member
    There is no really great reason that is couldn't be tooled for earlier systems. They might have had to lower the maximum supported resolution but it could have been done from what I've seen so far.

    It's quite typical of Apple to restrict support. 

    I still remember a major version of Java for OSX being tested on Jaguar but only to be released for Panther. 

    AR kit was released with the marketing banner of 'it will run on millions of iPhones'. No one remembered that when AR kit 3 was released for A12 processors and not even Apple's $1,000+ iPhone (released less than 12 months earlier) was invited to the party. 
    muthuk_vanalingamentropys
  • Reply 12 of 17
    dewmedewme Posts: 5,481member
    I can relate to both sides of this issue. There’s always been an undercurrent of belief that the iPad Pros are being “held back” by limitations in iPadOS. Apple itself has often touted how some of the iPad Pros hardware specs eclipse those of traditional laptop and even desktop PCs. So yeah, when Apple rolls out a cool new feature that many folks believe releases the iPad Pro from its supposed shackles and these new features are not terribly unlike the sort of things that are common on all of those supposedly eclipsed competitors, why wouldn’t it raise a lot of questions for owners of slightly older iPad Pros?

    On the other hand Apple wants to make sure that whatever it releases meets their quality standards, which include performance and user experience. Apple owns both the software and hardware pieces of the puzzle, so anything that comes across as substandard will reflect directly on Apple. Contrast this with Microsoft, who in the past, placed very few restrictions on which systems could install Windows 10. Some of the resulting installations would yield absolutely abysmal performance and be practically useless, but that was the hardware vendor’s problem, not Microsoft’s. Apple can’t point the finger at itself - even when it’s their own fault.

    I posed the question earlier whether those who feel left behind by Apple’s restrictions on Stage Manager would have been happier if Apple delayed the release of the feature a year or two so “left behind” iPad Pro owners would feel better. I personally think that doing so would be a mistake. I’d rather see Apple pushing the envelope at the cost of slight fragmentation rather than designing around a lowest common denominator. That’s just my take..

    As far as the shrinkydink feature shown in the linked article, all I can say is that there’s a big difference between a prototype and a release ready feature. It’s also not uncommon for proponents of individual features to struggle to get their feature into a product release. Determining what the “release defining features” of a product will be has always been a friction point between engineering and marketing. I’ve seen supposedly release defining features dropped at the last minute, only to reappear 3 or 4 releases later or even never. Head spinning. Who’s wrong and who’s right depends on which side of the fence you’re on. Unfortunately, it’s not easy to project at the point of inception what the cost (to the customer) of holding back one feature so another one can get released will be. Maybe if Apple had a fully trustworthy set of Alpha/Beta customers who would respect NDAs and not leak like a sieve they could field test some of these things more intensely and make smarter choices. Highly unlikely.
    12StrangersStrangeDaysAlex1NDBSynctmay
  • Reply 13 of 17
    jcohjcoh Posts: 23member
    dewme said:
    I can relate to both sides of this issue. There’s always been an undercurrent of belief that the iPad Pros are being “held back” by limitations in iPadOS. Apple itself has often touted how some of the iPad Pros hardware specs eclipse those of traditional laptop and even desktop PCs. So yeah, when Apple rolls out a cool new feature that many folks believe releases the iPad Pro from its supposed shackles and these new features are not terribly unlike the sort of things that are common on all of those supposedly eclipsed competitors, why wouldn’t it raise a lot of questions for owners of slightly older iPad Pros?

    On the other hand Apple wants to make sure that whatever it releases meets their quality standards, which include performance and user experience. Apple owns both the software and hardware pieces of the puzzle, so anything that comes across as substandard will reflect directly on Apple. Contrast this with Microsoft, who in the past, placed very few restrictions on which systems could install Windows 10. Some of the resulting installations would yield absolutely abysmal performance and be practically useless, but that was the hardware vendor’s problem, not Microsoft’s. Apple can’t point the finger at itself - even when it’s their own fault.

    I posed the question earlier whether those who feel left behind by Apple’s restrictions on Stage Manager would have been happier if Apple delayed the release of the feature a year or two so “left behind” iPad Pro owners would feel better. I personally think that doing so would be a mistake. I’d rather see Apple pushing the envelope at the cost of slight fragmentation rather than designing around a lowest common denominator. That’s just my take..

    As far as the shrinkydink feature shown in the linked article, all I can say is that there’s a big difference between a prototype and a release ready feature. It’s also not uncommon for proponents of individual features to struggle to get their feature into a product release. Determining what the “release defining features” of a product will be has always been a friction point between engineering and marketing. I’ve seen supposedly release defining features dropped at the last minute, only to reappear 3 or 4 releases later or even never. Head spinning. Who’s wrong and who’s right depends on which side of the fence you’re on. Unfortunately, it’s not easy to project at the point of inception what the cost (to the customer) of holding back one feature so another one can get released will be. Maybe if Apple had a fully trustworthy set of Alpha/Beta customers who would respect NDAs and not leak like a sieve they could field test some of these things more intensely and make smarter choices. Highly unlikely.
    Well explained and I think you hit the nail on the head.   In the next two years all iPad will have at least the M1 with the pros at M2 or 3 with only the budget iPad remaining with A series. 

    At that point if you want stage manager you buy  the iPad that supports it that you can afford. If you just want the budget ipad than I suspect that stage manager is not an important feature to you anyways.  They had to pull the trigger on it eventually and yes that means that some current “pro” iPads miss out. That’s par for the course with tech.   And I agree. You don’t half ass it on the older ones if the experience is going to suffer.  That’s bad for your brand as a whole.    Actually a smart long term play by Apple, although I suspect many won’t agree. 
    12StrangersAlex1NDBSynctmaywatto_cobra
  • Reply 14 of 17
    stolstol Posts: 12member
    avon b7 said:
    There is no really great reason that is couldn't be tooled for earlier systems. They might have had to lower the maximum supported resolution but it could have been done from what I've seen so far.

    It's quite typical of Apple to restrict support. 

    I still remember a major version of Java for OSX being tested on Jaguar but only to be released for Panther. 

    AR kit was released with the marketing banner of 'it will run on millions of iPhones'. No one remembered that when AR kit 3 was released for A12 processors and not even Apple's $1,000+ iPhone (released less than 12 months earlier) was invited to the party. 
    iMessage tested on OS X Lion for months (and working perfectly) only to be dropped eventually!
  • Reply 15 of 17
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 12,932member
    I am LOL’ing at the non-engineers (hell, some are even non-techies) always proclaiming to the world “There is no reason this Feature X can’t be done on Hardware Y! It’s easy!” Hear it all the time by sales guys and biz dudes with no clue as to what it is we do in software engineering. Yeah no. Sorry, but you don’t know what you don’t know. Just because you don’t know what the reasons are, doesn’t mean those engineering reasons don’t exist. Ignorance is bliss.
    Alex1NDBSyncFidonet127tmayjony0watto_cobra
  • Reply 16 of 17
    hmlongcohmlongco Posts: 551member
    If you'll remember, the A12Z chip used in the 2020 iPad was also used in the Apple Silicon Developer Transition Kit for macOS.

    If an A12Z is capable of running a full-full multitasking version of macOS... then there's no good reason why it can't manage Stage Manager.

    Then again, the A12Z in the DTK did have 16GB RAM.... so there's that.
    muthuk_vanalingamentropys
  • Reply 17 of 17
    temperortemperor Posts: 68member
    hmlongco said:
    If you'll remember, the A12Z chip used in the 2020 iPad was also used in the Apple Silicon Developer Transition Kit for macOS.

    If an A12Z is capable of running a full-full multitasking version of macOS... then there's no good reason why it can't manage Stage Manager.

    Then again, the A12Z in the DTK did have 16GB RAM.... so there's that.
    That last remark, it had 16 GB to pull all the Apps and even then the performance was mediocre at best. Furthermore, with a none touch device, aka mouse and keyboard, people are used to latency … on touch that is just horrible …
    DBSyncjony0
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