iPadOS 16 Beta Watch: These iPads support iPadOS 16.1

Updated on September 28th with new Stage Manager details.

The upcoming version of iPadOS, 16.1 (Apple is skipping 16.0, as previously reported), gets widespread support as usual. Apple is very generous with backwards compatibility for their devices, and iPads are no exception. While there is still no announced release date for iPadOS 16.1, we already know which iPad models will support the update.

  • iPad, fifth generation and newer.
  • iPad mini, fifth generation and newer.
  • iPad Air, third generation and newer.
  • iPad Pro, all models.

It’s worth keeping in mind that all features, such as Stage Manager and Reference Mode, won’t be available on all models. Stage Manager with external monitor support requires an iPad with an M1 chip or newer, which means the iPad Air 5, and the 2021 iPad Pro models. Stage Manager on the device, with no external monitor support, is available for 2018 and 2020 iPad Pros as well (A12X and A12X models). Reference Mode, a way to get more accurate color profiles across your workflow (with or without a Mac), is only available on the laters 12.9” iPad Pro because that’s the only screen capable of supporting the feature.

Given the state of Stage Manager, I’ve argued that Apple should revise the decision to skip iPadOS 16.0. It would be better if they launched it, without Stage Manager, getting feature parity in apps such as Reminders and Notes with iOS. I still think this is unlikely to happen, though.