Everything you didn’t know you could do with your iPad

Photo: Kyle Barr / Gizmodo

First of all, yes, this is a pretty obvious thing for anyone used to their mobile phone, but the iPad has been rather restrictive when it comes to its home screen and the widgets you can put on it. Since the arrival of iPadOS 17, you can hold down the key on the lock screen to customize the lock screen and home screen background. Of course you can change the wallpaper, but you can also add a selection of widgets to the lock screen, change the font and color of the date and time, and even set whether you prefer the preset dark or light mode with the two buttons at the bottom right.

The preset wallpapers are all pretty cool, although the Astronomy versions are my favorite. You can switch between Earth, Moon or any other planet in our solar system. If this reminds you of iOS, that’s kind of the point.

It also allows you to customize widgets on your home screen. These widgets are interactive, which means that if you click on some of them, you can mark reminders or turn on lights without having to open individual apps. You can find all the available widgets by holding down the home screen and then tapping the plus button at the top right of the screen once it appears. Yes, I know, this is all really basic, but to get the most out of your new iPad, it’s important to start with the simple things.