|Version of the iPadOS operating system|
|Written in||C, C++, Objective-C, Swift, assembly language|
|OS family||Unix-like, based on Darwin (BSD), iOS|
|Source model||Closed with open-source components|
|October 24, 2022|
|Latest release||16.6 (20G75) (July 24, 2023 )|
|Latest preview||16.6 beta 5 (20G5070a) (July 10, 2023 )|
|Marketing target||Tablet computers|
|Available in||40 languages|
|Update method||OTA, software update through iTunes, Apple Configurator, or Finder|
|Package manager||App Store|
|Kernel type||Hybrid (XNU)|
|Cocoa Touch (multi-touch, GUI)|
|License||Proprietary software with open-source components|
|Preceded by||iPadOS 15|
|Succeeded by||iPadOS 17|
|Supported. Drops support for all A8 and A8X chips, including the iPad Air 2, and the iPad Mini 4.|
|Articles in the series|
iPadOS 16 is the fourth and current major release of the iPadOS operating system developed by Apple for its iPad line of tablet computers. The successor to iPadOS 15, it was announced at the company's Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) on June 6, 2022, along with iOS 16, macOS Ventura, watchOS 9, and tvOS 16. It received numerous new features, improving multitasking and many other aspects of the operating system, most notably on iPads with Apple's M1 SoC and later.
The public beta of iPadOS 16 was released on July 11, 2022. The public version of iPadOS 16 was released on October 24, 2022 as iPadOS 16.1.
iPadOS 16 will be the final version of iPadOS that supports the first-generation iPad Pro and fifth-generation iPad, as its successor, iPadOS 17, drops support for those models, marking the end of support for iPads without Apple Pencil support.
See also: iOS 16 § Features
Main article: Freeform (Apple)
Freeform is a whiteboard app that lets users collaborate together in real time. It was released with iPadOS 16.2.
For the first time, Apple's Weather app is available on iPad. It was originally only available on iPhone and iPod Touch.
The Lock Screen has a new font and displays the date above the time to match iOS 16, but lacks the new customization features.
iPads will now be able to sign into websites that implement WebAuthn using just the user’s passcode or biometrics.
On iPads with Apple A12X Bionic, Apple A12Z Bionic, Apple M1 and Apple M2 processors, Stage Manager displays up to four apps at a time in adjustable windows. In addition, on iPads with Apple M1 and later, external displays are now driven using Stage Manager instead of screen mirroring, enabling display scaling on external displays.
On iPads with Apple M1 processors and later, and iPad Pro 11-inch with Apple A12X Bionic and A12Z Bionic processors, Display scaling mode allows more view space in apps by increasing the pixel density of the display.
On the iPad Pro 12.9-inch (5th generation) and (6th generation) with Liquid Retina XDR display, the iPad can be used in "Reference Mode" for color-graded work. This extends to Sidecar, as long as the Mac being connected to has Apple Silicon.
As with iOS 16, some already supported languages have received additional voices (including "Novelty" voices for English), and voices and support have been added for the following languages:
More text indentation features are added, as well as the ability to create column tables.
Allows the changing of file extensions and showing all file extensions.
Allows the customisation of toolbars to add tools, as well as editing the position of tools.
iPadOS 16's Stage Manager feature has been criticized by various sources for only being supported by certain iPad models with an M1 chip or M2 chip owing to strict performance requirements. In an interview with TechCrunch, Craig Federighi explained “It’s only the M1 iPads that combined the high DRAM capacity with very high capacity, high-performance NAND that allows our virtual memory swap to be super fast”. It was later discovered that the feature is disabled for older devices by an internal setting. Due to criticism, a single-screen version of Stage Manager was added on 2018 and 2020 iPad Pros in iPadOS 16.1 beta. Apple later provided a statement to Engadget, stating that “…customers with iPad Pro 3rd and 4th generation have expressed strong interest in being able to experience Stage Manager on their iPads. In response, our teams have worked hard to find a way to deliver a single-screen version for these systems, with support for up to four live apps on the iPad screen at once”.
External display support for Stage Manager on M1 iPads was delayed until further notice by Apple due to instability, and was brought back in the iPadOS 16.2 update.
Stage Manager was also criticized for being "hard to use" and some reviewers and critics called the feature "fundamentally misguided".
The lack of iOS 16's lock screen customization features was also criticized by reviewers such as David Pierce from The Verge. iPadOS had a hidden lock screen customization app named PostBoard which included the iOS 16’s lock screen customization features in iPadOS 16 Beta 1.
iPadOS 16 is supported on iPads with A9 or A9X chips or newer, dropping support for the iPad Air 2 and iPad Mini 4, both with A8 or A8X chips. This also marks the second time Apple has dropped support for older 64-bit iPads. The supported devices are as follows.
Further information: IPadOS version history § iPadOS 16
The first developer beta of iPadOS 16 was released on June 6, 2022. The first public release, iPadOS 16.1, was officially released on October 24, 2022.
|Previous release||Current release||Current beta release||Security response|
|16.1||October 24, 2022|
|16.1.1||November 9, 2022|
|16.2||December 13, 2022|
|16.3||January 23, 2023|
|16.3.1||February 13, 2023|
|16.4||March 27, 2023|
|16.4.1||April 7, 2023|
|16.4.1 (a)||May 1, 2023|
|16.5||May 18, 2023|
|16.5.1||June 21, 2023|
|16.5.1 (a)||July 10, 2023 (pulled after 10 hours)|
|16.5.1 (c)||July 12, 2023|
|16.6||July 24, 2023|
See Apple's official release notes, and official security update contents.