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Apple’s OS for iPad includes features that make it easier to use the iPad as a laptop replacement. Here’s what you need to know about iPadOS.

Apple’s iPad 8 generation will ship with iPadOS 14.

Image: Apple, Inc.

Since the launch of the first-generation iPad in 2010, Apple has dominated the tablet market. Originally launching with iPhone OS 3.2, the first-generation 9.7″ iPad was architecturally akin to a large iPhone. With successive models, Apple has differentiated the iPad from the iPhone by adding support for input methods such as the Apple Pencil, and different screen sizes, such as the 7.9″ iPad Mini, and the 11″ and 12.9″ iPad Pro.

As the iPad lineup has expanded into a wholly separate product category, Apple announced at its 2019 Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) that it has rebranded iOS for iPad as iPadOS starting with iOS 13 to highlight and target the features that differentiate the iPad from other devices. This follows Apple’s naming trend of watchOS for Apple Watch, and tvOS for Apple TV.

TechRepublic’s cheat sheet for iPadOS is an overview of how iPadOS differs from iOS, and it will be updated periodically as new information becomes available. You can also download this article: Apple iPadOS: A cheat sheet (free PDF).

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What is iPadOS?

For the release of iOS 13, Apple rebranded the variant of iOS for the iPad as iPadOS, effectively making it a superset of the phone-oriented iOS. iPadOS includes all of the improvements available with iOS 13, as well as new features and optimizations specific to the iPad.

“It’s become a truly distinct experience,” Craig Federighi, senior vice president of software engineering, told CNET in an exclusive interview about iPadOS. “It’s not an iPhone experience. It’s not a Mac experience. The name is a recognition of that.”

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How is iPadOS different from iOS?

iPadOS brings the iPad closer to feature parity with the entry-level MacBook, making it more possible to use as a laptop replacement. iPadOS includes the following features:

  1. Tablet-oriented home screen — The iPadOS home screen now supports persistent widgets, similar to widgets on Android tablets since Android 3.0 (Honeycomb).

  2. Improved multitasking — Users can move between Slide Over apps by swiping along the bottom, or swiping up to see all the apps in the Slide Over view. Slide Over apps can be moved to full screen by dragging them to the top, or closed by opening to the app switcher and flicking the app upward.

  3. Desktop Safari — Safari now loads the desktop version of web pages, optimized for touchscreens, as well as better support for Google Docs and WordPress editor. Some 30 new keyboard shortcuts were added to Safari.

  4. External drive support — USB drives and SD cards are now supported in Files, making it possible to plug in to an iPad directly without needing third-party program or an intermediary Mac for file management.

  5. Improvements to Files app — Files adds a column view similar to Finder on Mac OS, as well as support for SMB shares.

  6. Camera support — Cameras can be connected directly to the iPad, and photos can be imported for editing on iPad apps, such as Adobe Lightroom.

  7. Font support — Fonts can be downloaded from the App Store, for use in various apps.

  8. New gestures for faster editing — Copy, paste, and undo can now be performed using three-finger gestures, with three-finger pinch to copy, three-finger spread to paste, and three-finger swipe to undo, available for first-party and third-party apps.

  9. Apple Pencil improvements — Swiping from the corner of the screen with Apple Pencil opens the markup view, allowing users to annotate anything on the screen, and export it. Latency for Apple Pencil was decreased from 20ms to 9ms.

  10. Sidecar — Users can extend their Mac OS desktop onto the iPad as a second display, or mirror content between both displays. When used in conjunction with the Apple Pencil, Sidecar can make the iPad usable as a drawing tablet. Sidecar works via a wired connection, or wirelessly within 10 meters.

  11. Trackpad support — There is support for Apple’s Magic Keyboard, Magic Mouse 2, Magic Trackpad 2, as well as third-party accessories connected over Bluetooth or USB. According to ZDNet’s Jason Cipriani, “mouse support is an AssistiveTouch feature and also works when a Magic Trackpad is connected to the iPad,” and that it provides “a circular cursor that moves across the screen, acting as a finger would when touching the screen. It’s unclear how multi-touch gestures would work with a mouse pointer.”

  12. Scribble — This feature in iPadOS 14 for Apple Pencil will allow Pencil owners to handwrite in any text field and have it automatically translated from handwriting to type. On launch, it will support English and traditional and simplified Chinese, and can even distinguish between the two when used together in the same text field.

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Which devices can use iPadOS?

iPadOS is available for the 12.9″, 11″, 10.5″, and 9.7″ iPad Pro, the 5th, 6th, 7th, and 8th generation iPad, the 4th and 5th generation iPad mini, and 2nd, 3rd, and 4th generation iPad Air. The Apple iPad Pro 2020 ships with iPadOS 13.4 preinstalled, and the 4th gen iPad Air and 8th gen iPad will ship with iPad OS 14 preinstalled.

SEE: All of TechRepublic’s cheat sheets and smart person’s guides

When was iPadOS released?

Apple first announced iPadOS at WWDC 2019; the company announced iPadOS 14 at WWDC 2020. Developer betas were made available on June 22, 2020, the day of the announcement. The public beta for iPadOS 14 was released on July 9, 2020, and the final release will be on Sept. 16, 2020.

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How do I get iPadOS?

The update is now available on compatible iPad models. To update, open the Settings app, and go to General > Software Update. For users of LTE-capable iPads, connecting to Wi-Fi is advisable to avoid overages or throttling as a result of downloading the update. ZDNet has additional advice on preparing your iPad for software updates.

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Editor’s note: This article was originally written by James Sanders, and it was updated by Brandon Vigliarolo to include iPadOS 14 details.

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Xbox Series X, Series S India Pre-Order Time, Online Retailers Announced

India pre-orders for Xbox Series X and Series S will go live at 9am IST on Tuesday, September 22, Microsoft India has announced. Both Series X and Series S will be available on Amazon, Flipkart, and Reliance Digital’s online store. No offline stores have been announced. India is one of 37 countries where the new Xbox Series family will be up for pre-order on Tuesday, in addition to the US, the UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and parts of Europe, Middle East, and Africa.

While the Xbox Series X and Series S pre-order date was announced alongside the prices — Rs. 49,990 for the Series X and Rs. 34,990 for the Series S — and launch date (November 10) last week, we didn’t have details on an exact pre-order time and where it would be available. Now we know. Gadgets 360 has also reached out to Microsoft India on details regarding special discounts (credit / debit card cashback offers) and financing options (no-cost EMIs), and we will update if we hear back.

For those outside India, here’s where you can pre-order the Xbox Series X and Series S. In the US, pre-orders go live Tuesday, September 22 at 8am PT / 11am ET on Microsoft Store, Amazon, Best Buy, GameStop, Walmart, Target, Sam’s Club, Newegg, and other participating retailers. Up north in Canada, pre-orders also go live at 8am PT / 11am ET on Microsoft Store, Amazon, Walmart, Best Buy, EB Games, The Source, and other participating retailers.

Across the pond in the UK, Xbox Series X and Series S pre-orders will be available Tuesday 8am BST on Microsoft Store, GAME, Amazon, Dixons, Currys PC World, Argos, John Lewis, Smyths Toys, VERY, AO, Tesco, Simply Game, Shopto and other participating retailers. In mainland Europe, as well as the Middle East and Africa, you can pre-order online starting at 9am CEST on Microsoft Store, Amazon, MediaMarkt, GameStop, FNAC, Elkjøp/Elgiganten, and other participating retailers.

Down under all the way in Australia, Xbox Series X and Series S pre-orders kick off Tuesday, September 22 at 8am AEST on Microsoft Store, JB Hifi, EB Games, Telstra, Harvey Norman, and other participating retailers. And in nearby New Zealand, you can pre-order both new Xbox Series consoles starting 8am NZST on Microsoft Store, JB HiFi, EB Games, Spark, and other participating retailers.

In select markets, both Xbox Series X and Series S are available under a subscription programme, Xbox All Access, which bundles the consoles with the Xbox Game Pass membership.

Xbox Series S and Series X will launch in 37 countries — including India — on November 10, and 41 countries during “holiday 2020”.

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Netflix engineer builds SnapCamera lens to bring a comic book vibe to video calls

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Snapchat’s Lens Studio has built-in recognition for 5 hand gestures that means you don’t have to unmute to say hi or BRB.

If you need something to ease the frustration of conversations via video chat, consider a new Snap Camera lens. Cameron Hunter, a senior software engineer at Netflix, created Meeting Gestures. Instead of unmuting to say, “hi,” or “ok,” this lens communicates the information with a gesture instead. 

When you raise your index finger, “Question” pops up on your video feed in a red comic-book word bubble. Hunter used the smile recognition in Snap Camera to display “ha, ha” bubbles. Moving outside the frame brings up “I’ll be right back” in a word bubble that fills the screen.

He tweeted that he used five built-in hand gestures in Snap Lens Studio to create the lens. 

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Snap Camera is simple to install and use. It works on Zoom, Skype, Microsoft Teams, and  Twitch. Once you’ve got Snap Camera installed, set your video conference camera to Snap Camera. You have to run Snap Camera and your web conferencing software at the same time. 

From the home screen of Snap Camera, paste this into the search box: https://www.snapchat.com/unlock/?type=SNAPCODE&uuid=16839bd69c67492696d6ccf1296ad31e&metadata=01 

Most lenses have a more user friendly name. On Tuesday, Hunter said he was working with SnapChat to resolve an issue with the name of the lens.

That link will bring up Hunter’s lens. The word bubbles will look backward to you but will read correctly for viewers. 

Build your own lens

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Hunter’s Twitter post sparked several ideas about additional gestures for the Snap Camera library, including sign language. Hunter tweeted that you can lock messages or images to tracked objects such as a hand or a head. Snap Lens Studio does not support the middle finger gesture. Twitter user Johnny Xmas suggested the Meeting Gestures lens would be helpful during a large-scale scrum.

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Ryan Brown, content and creative lead at Twitter, built his own meeting friendly lens. When you hold up an open palm, a flash of fire pops up and a heart flashes up when you hold up an index finger. 

Lens Studio has a guide that explains how to make a lens. You can create Face Lenses for front camera experiences and World Lenses for rear camera experiences. 

There are numerous templates for both types. The General section covers 2D, 3D, face tracking, audio, and scripting. You can even define a hint that will display for a user when a lens is turned on. There are also guidelines on how to submit a lens to the Snap Camera gallery.

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New cancer screening study could affect treatment for thousands in the UK

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The first UK study to estimate the proportion of womb cancers caused by an inherited cancer predisposition called Lynch syndrome has been carried out by The University of Manchester.

Almost 3% of womb cancers are linked to a hereditary condition named Lynch syndrome, according to new clinical research findings published in the journal, PLOS Medicine. The results of the new study have caused the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) to advocate a change in testing practices across the UK.

Knowing that a person has Lynch syndrome can help determine which cancer treatments are likely to be successful. It also means that patients’ family members can be screened for the syndrome and those who test positive can be offered bowel-cancer screening to detect and remove pre-cancerous polyps. This has been shown to save lives. Whilst the link between Lynch syndrome and bowel cancer is well established, however, the link with womb cancers is less well studied.

The University of Manchester has now led the first prospective UK study to determine the prevalence of Lynch syndrome in 500 women newly diagnosed with womb cancer and found 16 to have Lynch syndrome.

Thirteen of the women did not know they had Lynch syndrome and their diagnosis prompted genetics referral, cascade testing of family members and access to prevention interventions (like colonoscopy and aspirin chemoprevention) that will hopefully prevent them (and their relatives) developing other cancers in the future.

The study was led by Professor Emma Crosbie at The University of Manchester and supported by the Medical Research Council and the National Institute for Health Research Manchester Biomedical Research Centre.

Professor Crosbie said: “If all women with womb cancer were tested for Lynch syndrome, we would identify around 220 women every year who didn’t know they had it, plus on average 3 family members per index case. This is around 1,000 people every year in the UK alone who would be diagnosed with Lynch syndrome and empowered to reduce their future cancer risk through proven interventions.

“More people could be enrolled in cancer prevention and screening programmes, and this may reduce the number of people being diagnosed with cancer, particularly at a young age.

“Because womb cancer often presents first, it may be the first sign that a patient has Lynch syndrome and is therefore at risk of developing bowel cancer and other Lynch-related cancers later in life. Finding out they have Lynch syndrome could enable them to take action to protect themselves and their family members from these cancers.”

A similar proportion of bowel cancers are caused by Lynch syndrome, which has led to guidance from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) that anyone diagnosed with bowel cancer should be tested for the condition.

Source: University of Manchester




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