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.

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