HomeTechnologyThis is what Stage Manager looks like on the iPad mini

This is what Stage Manager looks like on the iPad mini

Stage Manager is Apple’s solution to improve (or at least try) the iPad’s multitasking system. The feature allows users to run apps in windowed mode, but there’s a catch: it only works with the M1 iPad Air and iPad Pro. Apple hasn’t said a word at this point about changing the feature requirements, but we’ve found a way to see how Stage Manager would work on the iPad mini.

How Stage Manager works

First of all, if you haven’t seen Stage Manager in action, it essentially brings windows to iPadOS 16. However, there are still limitations when it comes to resizing and moving apps around on the screen. It’s not exactly like what you get on a Mac or Windows PC, but it certainly makes the iPad feel more like a real computer.

Unfortunately, only iPads with the M1 chip support Stage Manager. Apple says it set the M1 chip as a requirement because Stage Manager allows users to open up to eight apps simultaneously. Stage Manager also allows full external display support up to 6K resolution, and unsurprisingly, Apple says other iPads don’t have enough performance for that.

Some users didn’t seem to believe Apple’s statements as some of them are quite controversial. For example, the company claims that Stage Manager takes advantage of fast memory swapping which is only available on the M1 chip. However, the 64GB iPad Air 5, which runs Stage Manager, lacks RAM swapping.

Stage Manager on iPad mini

Officially, there is no way to enable Stage Manager on non-M1 iPads. However, 9to5Mac found a hidden internal mode in iPadOS 16 code that enables Stage Manager on any iPad running the latest version of the operating system. Since there’s no jailbreak tool available for iPadOS 16, we can’t enable this mode on a real iPad, but we can take a look at it using iOS Simulator – an Apple tool that lets developers to test their applications on a Mac.

More interesting than seeing Stage Manager working on the iPad Pro or previous generation iPad Air, I was wondering what the feature looked like on the iPad mini. And that’s what I just found out.

Stage Manager on iPad mini.

Of course, the iPad mini screen is too small for advanced multitasking, but Stage Manager can still be very useful for some iPad mini users. I took some screenshots of the iOS Simulator and sent them to my iPad mini to get a better idea of ​​how user-friendly Stage Manager is in terms of interface size. Honestly, everything looks pretty good to me.

You can open three iPhone-sized apps side-by-side without compromising usability, which seems perfect for checking multiple social networks while you’re reading something. You can also open a larger window while leaving smaller windows in the background to quickly switch between them, which is great for dragging and dropping items.

Current iPads can already open up to three apps simultaneously with Split View and Slide Over, but the experience is much more limited because you can’t have all three apps side by side.

This is what Stage Manager looks like on iPad mini.

Will Apple ever change that?

Some users want to have a limited version of Stage Manager for non-M1 iPads, but Apple has never said if it will ever do so.

After seeing Stage Manager work on the iPad mini, I’m convinced I’d like the ability to run apps in windowed mode, even with some limitations compared to the M1 iPads. Like I said before, having windows isn’t just about how many apps you can run at the same time, it’s also about organization.

Stage Manager isn’t exactly perfect, but it certainly improves on the iPad’s poor multitasking system – and it’s a shame Apple wants to keep it for the more expensive iPads.

For now, the beta version of iPadOS 16 remains available exclusively for developers. According to Apple, the first public beta will be released this month, while the official release is expected this fall.

Update: You can download and open the screenshots below on your iPad mini 6 to see the Stage Manager interface for yourself.

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