A seemingly small but major change that Apple introduced in iPadOS 14 beta 5 that has gone unnoticed so far is the ability to use Siri while also using other apps. On iPadOS 13, when one triggered Siri on their iPad, users could not use any other app as the Siri interface would end up taking the entire screen. On iPadOS 14, Apple gave Siri a compact UI makeover but triggering the virtual assistant meant users had to pause whatever else they were doing.
A video posted by Redditor Aiden Alderson shows that in iPadOS 14 beta 5, it is now possible for users to continue interacting with apps in the background while using Siri. The feature is still a bit limited as one still cannot type when Siri is triggered and in some apps, scrolling simply does not work while in others it does. It is possible that Apple will further refine this feature with future beta builds of iPadOS.
While this might seem like a small change but it allows users to truly multitask on their iPad using the virtual assistant and just get more things done at once. For example, one can tell Siri to control their HomeKit devices while digging through the Settings menu for some work.
Sadly, Apple has not introduced this change on the iPhone in iOS 14 beta. It is unclear if the company intends to bring the ability to the iPhone or not. Nonetheless, iPad owners who use their device as a true laptop replacement and rely heavily on Siri are going to find this change a useful one. Here’s hoping that Apple builds on the feature though and adds support for more apps.
iPadOS 14 will be released alongside iOS 14 later this fall. If you cannot wait until then, you can always install the iPadOS 14 public beta on your iPad. Also, make sure to read about all the new iPadOS 14 features.