Universal Control is a Result of Years of Work on iPadOS, Says Apple Product Manager

Universal Control results from years of working on the iPadOS platform, allowing for a feature such as ‌Universal Control‌ that bridges the gap between the iPad and the Mac to exist, an Apple product manager has said in a new interview this week.

universal control wwdc
Vivek Bhardwaj, an Apple product manager who works on iOS, iPadOS, and macOS, shed light on Apple's thinking about ‌Universal Control‌ in an interview on the AppStories podcast. Bhardwaj said that Apple's approach to ‌Universal Control‌ was to help create a more continuous experience between the ‌iPad‌ and Mac platforms, building on existing Continuity features such as Universal Clipboard and the ability to unlock a Mac with an Apple Watch.

For ‌Universal Control‌ to exist, Bhardwaj said that Apple had to first work on iPadOS as a platform itself. Bhardwaj references features such as the ability to drag and drop files, photos, text, and more across the system and support for using a trackpad on an ‌iPad‌.

To use ‌Universal Control‌, at least one Mac has to be in the workflow as it can't be used solely between two or more iPads. Regarding whether ‌Universal Control‌ could ever work between just multiple iPads, Bhardwaj said that Apple designed ‌Universal Control‌ with both the ‌iPad‌ and Mac in mind, adding that a considerable amount of Mac users also own an ‌iPad‌, whereas many customers don't own two iPads.

In the interview, Bhardwaj also touched on Shortcuts coming to the Mac and what that means for automation on the platform. ‌Universal Control‌ became available to users after weeks of testing with macOS Monterey 12.3 and iPadOS 15.4, released earlier this month.

Related Forums: iOS 15, macOS Monterey

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Top Rated Comments

Caliber26 Avatar
29 months ago
There's a lot to criticize Apple for, but this is the type of seamless integration that separates them from the rest of the pack and why so many of us are happy to pay their premium prices.
Score: 27 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Pilot Jones Avatar
29 months ago
A genuinely impressive feature that will no doubt change many a workflow.

Now bring Final Cut and Logic to the iPad you cowards.
Score: 21 Votes (Like | Disagree)
tharitm Avatar
29 months ago
The next thing to do should be to remove the requirement for both devices to be under the same Apple ID. Instead replace with a prompt or confirmation of a 6 digit code on both devices. This will allow anyone using a Mac for work to quickly connect to the iPad.
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
BootsWalking Avatar
29 months ago

There's a lot to criticize Apple for, but this is the type of seamless integration that separates them from the rest of the pack and why so many of us are happy to pay their premium prices.
Logitech implemented it four years ago.

Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
MayaUser Avatar
29 months ago

Logitech implemented it four years ago.


not the same ...lacks a lot of features
"Logitech Flow allows users of both Windows and macOS machines to quickly and painlessly copy and paste text, both plain text and rich text, images, files and folders between peer computers. It achieves this by sending clipboard hints from the flow out computer to the flow in computer during channel switch." And this is the limit of what you can do between 2 desktop OS..so even the compatibility is limited to desktop OS
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
idmean Avatar
29 months ago

Logitech implemented it four years ago.


This doesn’t allow you to drag and drop files. This only shares the cursor and implements something akin to Universal Clipboard, which Apple introduced more than five years ago.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)