Apple iPadOS 15 release date, features, news and rumours


(Pocket-lint) – Apple releases one major software update each year for iPhone, iPad and Watch, with several smaller updates throughout the year. 

The next major update for iPad is expected to be iPadOS 15. You can read more about iOS 15 for iPhone in our separate feature, but here is everything we have heard so far about iPadOS 15, including what features might come, when it will be released and what iPads will be compatible.

iPadOS 15 release date

  • Preview June 2021
  • Release September 2021

Apple typically presents a preview of its next software updates during its Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) in June. This will take place between 7 June and 11 June. You can read our separate feature on how to watch it here.

During WWDC 21, we expect to learn about several of the new features that iPadOS 15 will bring to iPads, though the final software isn’t expected to be released until later in the year, normally September.

At the moment, there is no specific date for iPadOS 15’s release, though if traditional – pre 2020 – patterns are followed, we’d expect the software to be released to public in the beginning of September.

iPadOS 15 features

  • Redesigned home screen
  • Widgets
  • Notification revamp

Rumours suggest iPadOS 15 will bring a redesign for the iPad’s home screen and lock screen. It’s said the update will be the most significant yet and users will be able to place widgets anywhere, mirroring what is possible on iPhone.

Like iOS 15, it’s claimed notifications will also be revamped, allowing users to fine tune settings based on their status, whether that be sleeping, driving, working or something else. It’s said there will also be an auto-reply feature on the back of this new notification feature.

Other features reported for iPadOS 15 include more privacy features to tell users when apps are secretly collecting information on you and possibly updates to iMessage to make it more like WhatsApp, though it’s said the latter may not make it to iPadOS 15.

iPadOS 15 what we want to see

While some of these are probably unlikely, and while others sound like we basically want macOS on iPad, these are all the features we’d like to see come to iPadOS 15:

  • App Library from iOS 
  • Widgets from iOS
  • Support for multiple users (oh pretty please)
  • Support for multiple windows in multi-tasking
  • Files app more like Finder on macOS
  • Support for multiple desktops like macOS
  • Better external monitor support
  • Final Cut Pro

iPadOS 15 compatibility: Which iPads will be supported?

For now, it’s not confirmed what iPads will be supported by iPadOS 15, though as iOS 15 is said to be dropping a couple of models with the A9 chip and below, it’s possible iPadOS 15 will do the same.

We expect the following models to be compatible:

  • iPad Pro 12.9 (5th gen)
  • iPad Pro 11 (3rd gen)
  • iPad Pro 12.9 (4th gen)
  • iPad Pro 11 (2nd gen)
  • iPad Pro 12.9 (3rd gen)
  • iPad Pro 11 (1st gen)
  • iPad Pro 12.9 (2nd gen)
  • iPad Pro 10.5
  • iPad (8th gen)
  • iPad (7th gen)
  • iPad (6th gen)
  • iPad Mini (5th gen)
  • iPad Air (4th gen)
  • iPad Air (3rd gen)

If this is the case, it would see the original iPad Pro models lose support, along with the iPad mini 4, iPad (5th gen) and iPad Air (2nd gen). Nothing is official as yet though.

iPadOS 15 rumours: What’s happened so far?

Here is everything we have heard so far about iPadOS 15.

22 April 2021: iPadOS 15 to bring redesign of Home Screen and lock screen

Reliable Apple reporter Mark Gurman of Bloomberg claimed iPadOS 15 will be the most significant update so far and will come with a redesigned home screen, lock screen and notifications. 

February 2021: iPadOS 15 could drop support for models with A9 chip 

iPhoneSoft reported on some of the iPhone models not expected to be compatible with iOS 15. It’s said Apple will drop support for models with the A9 chip and lower, suggesting it may do the same for iPad. 

Writing by Britta O’Boyle.

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