If you have an iPad and an iPhone, this has happened to you at some point, maybe even constantly: you find yourself using iPad-specific features and functions, and then switch to an iPhone and find yourself unable to do those things more. If you could, everyday tasks would be easier and more efficient.
Apple released iPadOS 16 a few weeks ago, and it has even more new tools that would be great to have in your pocket. Here’s our list of iPad features we’d love to see on the iPhone one day (coming soon).
It’s been seven years since iPad users got the gift of the nifty invention known as the Apple Pencil, and you still can’t use it on iPhone. While Steve Jobs famously hated the idea, we think it’s time to make the Apple Pencil work with the iPhone. After all, our iPhones are always available for things like notes and sketches, and features like converting handwriting to text would be fantastic. And now that the screen is larger than 3.5 inches, we think Steve will like it too.
Maybe it’s just us, but ever since Apple finally released the floating Magic Keyboard for the iPad Pro, we’ve wanted a miniature model for the iPhone. It might seem like a dumb idea, but consider putting your iPhone 14 Pro Max on a MagSafe stand with a MagSafe Duo-style foldout keyboard for typing long emails and projects. The potential for improved travel-only performance would be worth its likely $149 price tag.
Fast data transfer
Rumor has it that the iPhone 15 is switching to USB-C, which means the iPhone and iPad will finally have the same connection. But we don’t know what that means for speeds. On the iPad, Apple limits the iPad Air port to 10Gbps, which is still much faster than the 480Mbps we’re getting now. But we really hope that the Pro models will receive Thunderbolt support, like the iPad Pro M2, and will support data transfer at 40 Gb / s.
With iPadOS 16, Apple is finally offering proper external display support for the iPad Pro M1 and M2 via Stage Manager, but we think it could be practical for the iPhone as well. iPhone users can already use AirPlay to mirror content, but it’s mostly for video playback. The iPhone is a powerful computer that is somewhat limited by its small display. However, many people use iMovie, GarageBand, and other apps to create content that would be much easier to use on a big screen.
For years, iPad users have been able to use Split View as a great way to work between two different apps at the same time. Even though iPhone screens are smaller, they are still large enough (especially in landscape mode) to be able to see apps side by side. Android phones have been using split-screen multitasking for years, and we think Apple could do it even better.
A useful tool for iPad and Mac users, Universal Control lets you use your iPad as a wireless display controlled by your Mac’s keyboard and mouse, and easily work between them. Of course, it wouldn’t be too hard to extend this feature to the iPhone as well, so that we don’t have to constantly reach for our iPads.
Okay, we know Stage Manager isn’t the best feature of the iPad. It’s still a work in progress, but by using it over the past few months, we’re seeing how it can become a real asset on the iPad for running multiple apps at the same time. We’re not sure if this will work on the iPhone – the Stage Manager interface will definitely need to be reconfigured for the smaller screen – but we certainly would like Apple to give it a try.