Skip to main content

New concept video shows how great an iPad with Home screen widgets could be

iPad Widget Concept
iPad Widget Concept (Image credit: Matt Birchler)

What you need to know

  • Apple's iOS 14 release brought Home screen widgets to iPhone.
  • But iPadOS 14 didn't get the same feature for iPad.
  • This concept video shows that was a mistake.

When Apple released iOS 14 a couple of weeks ago it brought Home screen widgets to iPhone's Home screen for the first time. The world rejoiced and life was good. But for reasons unknown, iPad didn't get the same love. Instead, they live on the Today sidebar and that sucks.

How much does it suck? See for yourself by watching Matt Birchler's concept video showing how awesome it could be.

Amazingly, as Birchler points out, iPadOS 14 seems to already be set up for Home screen widgets because app icons are ready to receive them.

Fun fact, did you know that depending on your iPad size, mode, and orientation, your icons will be either 38, 46, 58, 62, 64, 68, 76, 88, 96, 102, 118, or 137 points apart in the UI? It's true! This idea that the icon grid is in any way fixed and can not change is not backed up by how the home screen already works. My solution actually reduces the variance in spacing that we have today, somewhat ironically making the grid more consistent than it is today.

So how cool would Home screen widgets on iPad be? Very cool, that's how much. Observe as Birchler even explains how it would work. Developers need not fret, too, with the good news being that they likely wouldn't need to do much work to make their widgets work.

Are you watching, Apple?

Oliver Haslam
Contributor

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.

Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.

2 Comments
  • You say it would be very alike windows start screen?
  • “The world rejoiced and life was good.” Um, no. You did. You are not the world. That is the ugliest, busiest screen since Windows phones. One of the (many) reasons that Windows phones failed was the ugly, busy, spinning/flashing/hey-look-at-me stupid tiles things. No one wanted it then, and the gross screen shot above shows why. I don’t need to wade thru all of that just to find the app icon I am looking for. Even desktop Windows 10 is (finally) moving away from this cluttered mess. As long as crap like this is optional, then fine. Do whatever you want. Just don’t force this train wreck on everyone. Which is what Windows phones did. Note how that experiment ended.