iPadOS 18 finally offers one of the basic functions of a computer!

Despite an opening keynote for WWDC 2024 lasting a little over 1 hour 40 minutes, Apple is far from having revealed all of the new features of its systems, including certain new fundamental functions.

iPadOS 18 can finally format an external volume

While iPads now all have a USB-C port, they were currently only capable of erasing a volume while retaining the format of the latter, and even then only since iPadOS 17. Apple will finally offer a functionality, albeit extremely basic, to iPad users by allowing them to format a hard drive, USB key or SSD. We owe this new discovery to Kaleb Cadle of Bytebits

How to format an external volume on iPadOS 18?

Currently, it is possible to rename an external volume or even erase it while retaining its format. When the final version of iPadOS 18 is available this fall, it will then be possible to go a little further and have a function that has been available on computers since the dawn of time. For that, you will have to do a long press (or secondary click with a trackpad or mouse) on the name of the external volume in the Files App sidebar.

From there, choosing the option To erase in the menu that will appear, You will be offered to choose between APFS, ExFAT and FAT formats, and you can also rename the volume at the same time. The ExFAT format seems a good choice in order to be able to read your hard drives, SSDs, USB keys and SD cards on the majority of devices on the market. You can also opt for APFS but your volumes will then only be read/write accessible on Apple devices (which can be a problem when exchanging files with people on PC and/or Android). Note also that the option to format external volumes is also available on iOS 18and that Apple allows you to choose between a case-sensitive format and encryption of your storage, but only if you opt for the APFS format.

iPadOS 18 finally offers one of the basic functions of a computer!

It is quite surprising that Apple offers this function so late (although it’s better late than never), especially when we present our tablets as being capable of completely replacing a computer. Even if access to files via email, messages or even AirDrop allows you to benefit from the modernity of wireless and an internet connection, it is still very practical to rely on a simple USB key, SSD card, an SSD or a hard drive to simply and quickly exchange data.

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