iPadOS 15 Allows Apps to Use Up to 12GB of RAM on High-End iPad Pro, Up From Just 5GB
In June, we reported that starting with iPadOS 15, Apple is giving developers the ability to allocate their apps more RAM, allowing apps to use more of the available memory in the iPad to run faster and smoother.
Via an entitlement, Apple is giving developers the ability to let iPadOS know that certain functions of their apps may perform better if they have access to more system memory. Currently, Apple caps the amount of memory an app can use, mainly to ensure that a single app does not utilize all of a device's memory, impacting other core system functions.
Till now, we had limited information regarding specific details of this entitlement, including exactly how much RAM an app can request. However, with iPadOS 15 launching on September 20, we now know that on the highest-end M1 iPad Pro, apps can use up to double the amount of RAM that was previously allowed.
The new details were shared by the developers behind the graphic design app Artstudio Pro, and according to their findings, on the highest-end M1 iPad Pro, which features 16GB of RAM, apps can request through the entitlement to use up to 12GB of that available memory. On the other M1 iPad Pro models, which feature only 8GB of RAM, apps can request up to 6GB.
In both cases, even if an app informs iPadOS that additional memory is needed, iPadOS still allocates a 2GB buffer for the app, on top of the 4GB available for 16GB iPad Pro models, and the 2GB free for the other models.
The new change is likely to be most beneficial to graphically intensive apps, such as those for drawing, modeling, and photo and video editing. While the added RAM allocation is welcomed, some users may continue to argue that iPadOS is not taking full advantage of the hardware within iPad, especially with the 11-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pros powered by the M1 chip.
Apple says the new entitlement will be available on "supported devices," and at this point, which devices are supported beyond the new iPad Pros is unknown. For example, this week, Apple released a new iPad mini and a new baseline ninth-generation iPad, with 4GB and 3GB of RAM respectively. For these new models, Apple is unlikely to allow apps to request RAM above the system limit, as it may impact core functions of iPadOS.
iPadOS 15, which includes the ability to place widgets anywhere on the Home Screen, an improved multitasking experience, Live Text, and more, will launch alongside iOS 15, watchOS 8, and tvOS 15 on Monday, September 20.