More leaks are coming out about the upcoming iOS 8, and today’s tidbit points to Apple positioning its iPads as bonafide laptop replacements.
According to 9to5Mac, Apple will reportedly introduce a split-screen feature in the upcoming operating system, allowing users to interact with two applications at once. iOS 8, which is expected to be unveiled in the company’s WWDC conference next month, mimics Windows for Microsoft Surface tablets. The feature, which first appeared in Windows 8.1 as snap multitasking, is popular with business users, a segment where Apple’s dominance is being challenged.
Aside from letting users manipulate two apps side by side, the feature also allows interactions between apps, such as dragging a photo or a text file from one app to another. Currently, you can only open iPad apps individually in full-screen mode. It is possible to move, say, a block of text from one app to another, but this requires a more roundabout copy/pasting process.
So far, the feature is only expected to appear in iPads running on iOS 8. According to the site’s sources, the feature is designed for 9.7-inch iPads and will will work exclusively in landscape mode. No word yet on whether the feature will make its way to iPad minis and iPhones.
Earlier leaks point to iOS 8 sporting new features such as health and fitness app Healthbook and a standalone iTunes Radio app. Improvements are also expected for CarPlay, notifications, Maps, TextEdit, Siri, and iCloud. Some of the feature may end up being delayed and bundled into iOS 8.1, which is reportedly already in development. The reason for the delay is said to be development for OSX 10.10, the company’s desktop operating system, which is also expected to be unveiled in the WWDC conference on June 2.
Read our iOS 8 Rumor Roundup for a more complete look at what we know about Apple’s next OS.