Last year, when Apple introduced the ability to add widgets to iPhone’s home screen, everyone was surprised. The reason being that the same capability didn’t make it to iPad, which has more real estate than iPhone. Fortunately, Apple fixed this with the launch of iPadOS 15. Now, you can put widgets anywhere on the iPad’s home screen. That means the widgets can now happily live along with the apps on the home screen. So how does one add, use, and customize widgets in iPadOS 15? Find the answer in this post.
How to Use Widgets on iPad Home Screen
Widgets are useful boxes that provide concise information to users at a glance without opening the associated app. Tapping on the widget will open the full version of the app.
In the previous versions of iPadOS, widgets stayed exclusively in the Today View. Even though you could add Today View to the home screen, it wasn’t the best approach to get widgets on the home screen. But now widgets can be moved directly to the home screen. Apart from that, widgets can be accessed from Today View as well.
iPadOS 15 also brings new widgets for App Store, Game Center, Mail, Contacts, and Find my.
How to Add Widgets to iPad Home Screen
First and foremost, install the iPadOS 15 on your iPad. If you have iOS 14, you cannot add widgets on the iPad’s home screen. To check the software version on your iPad, go to Settings > General > About. Check the number next to the Software version. It should be 15.0 or higher.
With the iPadOS version confirmed, go to your iPad’s home screen. Touch and hold any empty space on the screen until the icons start to shake. Tap on the Add (+) icon at the top.
The widget selection panel will open showing you the list of available widgets. Look for the widget that you want to add to the iPad’s home screen. You can use the search bar at the top to find the widget quickly. For some widgets, you will have different sizes and types. Swipe between the available options to find the widget of your choice. Once you have found the right widget, tap on the Add widget button. Alternatively, drag and drop the widget to the home screen. That way, you can add multiple widgets without repeating the process.
The widget will be added to your home screen. You can change its position as shown next.
How to Move Widgets on iPad’s Home Screen
Once a widget is added to the iPad’s home screen, you can move it to a different location on the same page or to a different page.
To do so, touch and hold the widget that you want to move. Then drag the widget to the new position. To move it to a different page, bring it towards the edge so that it slides over to the next page. As you can see in the below screenshot, I have changed the position of the Battery widget from its original position as shown in the previous screenshot.
How to Customize iPad Widgets
Some widgets such as Apple Notes, Weather, etc., can be customized right from the home screen. You can change the type of data that is shown in the widget too. For instance, you can change your location in the Weather widget.
To customize a widget, touch and hold it. Tap on the Edit Widget option from the menu that pops up. Then customize the widget using the available options.
How to Remove a Widget From Home Screen on iPad
There are two ways by which you can delete a widget from iPad’s home screen. Firstly, touch and hold the widget until a menu appears. Select Remove widget from the menu.
Alternatively, touch and hold an empty space on your iPad until the icons and widgets start to wiggle. Tap on the remove (–) icon on the widget to delete it. You can re-add a widget after removing it from the home screen.
How to Use Widget Stacks
Gladly, widgets stacks from iPadOS 14 can also be added to iPad’s home screen in iPadOS 15. For the unaware, a widget stack is a special type of widget that houses different widgets in one. You can either use Smart stack widgets or create your own widget stacks.
Smart Stacks are pre-built collection of widgets on your iPad. The USP of Smart Stacks widget is that it will show you relevant widget automatically at the right time. For instance, if your use Apple Maps to commute, you might the see Map widget in Smart Stack in the evening showing commute time. Similarly, iPad will rotate between other widgets in Smart Stack based on various factors such as location, time, or activity.
Do note that you can only add widgets to widget stack. You cannot add apps to them.
To add a Smart Stack to your iPad, touch and hold an empty space on iPad. Tap on the add (+) icon to go to the widget selection panel. Tap on Smart Stack. Select the size of the widget. Then tap on Add widget.
As mentioned before, the widgets will automatically rotate in Smart Stack. But you can manually change the widget by swiping up or down on the Smart Stack on home screen.
To manually create a widget stack, touch and hold a widget on the home screen to select it. Then drag it on top of another widget. Similarly, you can add more widgets to the widget stack. You can create multiple widget stacks if you want.
To edit a widget stack, touch and hold the widget. Tap on Edit stack from the menu. You can disable or enable Smart rotate by editing a stack. You can also customize widget suggestions.
How to Use Widgets in Today View
If you don’t like to keep widgets on home screen, you can access some of them from the Today View as well.
To add widgets to Today View on your iPad, swipe right from the first page on your home screen. When the Today View opens, scroll down and tap on Edit.
Again, scroll down and tap on Customize.
Tap on the green (+) icon to add a widget. Similarly, tap on the red (-) icon to remove a widget from Today View. Drag the widget using the three bars next to them to change their position in Today View.
Wrap Up: Widgets in iPadOS 15
The ability to add widgets to the iPad’s home screen is a game-changer and will be loved by everyone. We hope you were able to add, remove, and customize widgets in iPadOS 15. If you like writing on your iPad, check out the best handwriting apps for iPad.