A few weeks ago, we reported on a rumor that the release of iPadOS 16 would be delayed until October. Today, Apple confirmed the delay, along with a developer beta of iPadOS 16.1. A public beta is likely to follow this week, although it’s unclear whether iOS 16 public beta testers will automatically receive the new version.
Essentially, Apple will skip iPadOS 16.0 in September and instead bring the new operating system to iPads this fall as iPadOS 16.1 (presumably in October, along with iOS 16.1).
In a statement to TechCrunch, Apple said: “This is a particularly big year for iPadOS. As a proprietary platform with features designed specifically for iPad, we have the flexibility to deliver iPadOS on its own schedule. This fall, iPadOS will become after iOS. shipped as version 16.1 in a free software update.”
The most dramatic part of the new iPadOS release is Stage Manager, a new multitasking interface for iPads with M1 processors or newer that is also coming to macOS Ventura. The system has been praised for its overall concept, but many of the specifics of its implantation on iPads have been criticized. It has undergone several meaningful changes since beta testing began in June, but the prevailing view is that there is still a long way to go.
Delaying the release of iPadOS 16 may also be more in line with the timing of new iPad hardware, which is said to arrive in October.