iPads are about to get a whole lot better at gaming
iPads aren’t exactly known for their gaming prowess, but plenty of people do use them for gaming on anyway. With a large screen and powerful chipsets, it does make a lot of sense. With iPad OS 16, Apple announced at this year’s WWDC that there are a ton of gaming-specific features being introduced.
The first is that Apple is bringing Metal 3 to iPads. Metal is a low-level and low-overhead API that combines functionality similar to both OpenGL and OpenCL in one API, for hardware-accelerated 3D graphics. It has the same FX upscaling as announced on the Mac.
Not only that, the company has announced a new API that lets apps download large assets in the background on iPads. It means games that require larger asset packs can do it while you play, so they can download new graphics packs or other important files.
Finally, Game Center will let you play without creating a new account. You can find friends, track progress, you can view if friends beat your high scores, see when they’re online, and other features, too. SharePlay will also make it easier to join and play with friends inside of Game Center.
If you’re an iPad gamer, then these features may interest you, though it’s a bit of a niche market. Games like Genshin Impact and Monument Valley look fantastic on one thanks to the bigger screen, but most gamers on iOS devices are more likely to use an iPhone. Still, it’s a good addition and gives the iPad a leg-up in the gaming department over competitors.