Just a day back we reported Apple won’t bring iOS 8 update to its flagship iPhone 4. We stated since iPad 2 has specs similar to iPhone 4, it may also miss out on the latest version of iOS. This time however we’re gonna bring some good news as it is being rumored that Apple’s 9.7 inch iPad models may pack iOS 8 with split-screen multi-tasking facility.
The rumor points at two crucial aspects of the upcoming iOS 8. One is the split-screen multi tasking technology which could be added to iOS 8. This split-screen will make simultaneous use of two apps possible. Alongside, the feature will make sure the two apps that are being used at the same time interact with each other smoothly. Users could drag text or graphic content from one app and drop it to another.
How this feature will work on iPad is not known. Actually, iOS 8 itself is under the development phase. Besides whether the 7.9 inch iPad models such as iPad Mini will get iOS multiple application support, hasn’t been decided yet. In the past, multitasking support of was restricted to only basic background functions, that too for applications built by Apple. When iOS 4 was released, known more commonly as iPhone OS 4.0 the multitasking feature showed up for the first time. The feature was however, for developers to carry out specific operations in the background.
Till date, iOS could only show one app at a time. The iPad as a result has remained strictly a unitasking device. However, if the rumors turns true, we might be able to put our hands on multitasking iPad. Question is whether this feature will keep Apple ahead of its competitors in the race.
Currently, the Surface Tablet from Microsoft allows users to view multiple apps at once and part them or smack them on a screen that is limited in size. Microsoft Surface 2, released on October 22, 2013 had an edge over Apple’s iPad, its close competitor. It was found that the added popularity was due to the multitasking feature.
If Apple could pull off the multitasking in iPad Air or iPad Pro, it will outweigh Microsoft as Surface 2 is often called a landscape-only affair meaning as the 16:9 screen is not adequate to allow multitasking in a portrait mode.
There’s another benefit that iPad users may be able to enjoy. There was rumor that Apple may introduce its XPC service to iOS. XPC is actually a technique that allows two or more processes to communicate with each other. There’s a grand central dispatch with which the communication always stays tied in.
XPC also makes possible Remote View Controllers, which current iOS frameworks are using. Courtesy to remote view controller, one app which is running currently could open up another app. Inputs from users, in terms of touch events could get forwarded to the second app from the first app.
If iOS 8 multitasking bases itself on XPC service, it will be a great resource for developers. They could easily share content between different applications.
The WWDC conference on 2nd June 2014 will showcase iOS 8. A sneak peak would let us know what we could expect from it. At the same time, we need to wait for more rumors on the anticipated 12 inch iPad Pro. If iPad Air indeed gets iOS 8 multitasking update, iPad Pro and iPad Air 3 could be next in the line.