How to use Stage Manager with your iPad and Mac (2023)

Multitasking on The iPad isn’t the most intuitive experience. Even with features like Split View and Slide Over, where you can work with multiple apps at the same time, it’s not clear how to get these tools to work, let alone how to maximize their capabilities. That’s partly why Apple introduced Stage Manager last year in iPadOS 16, a new multitasking feature that mimics the experience of a desktop operating system.

Stage Manager organizes your open apps on the left side of the screen where you can see them at a glance. You can also group apps together and even resize and overlap windows. This makes a lot of sense for the iPad, but it’s also available for MacBooks running MacOS Ventura—handy if you often have a lot of apps open and need some organizational help. Although easy to use, once you get the hang of it, there is a learning curve. To help you out, here we break down how to use Stage Manager on your iPad and Mac.

Is your device compatible?

Apple initially announced that Stage Manager would only work with M1-powered iPad Pro models and later. But the company later extended support to the iPad Pro models with the A12X AND A12Z chips. The following iPads support Stage Manager:

  • iPad Pro 12.9 inches (3rd generation and later)
  • iPad Pro 11 inch (all generations)
  • iPad Air (5th generation)

There is one caveat. The ability to move apps and windows between iPad and an external display using Stage Manager only works with the following models:

  • iPad Pro 12.9 inches (5th generation and later)
  • iPad Pro 11 inch (3rd generation and later)
  • iPad Air (5th generation)

To check the specific model of your iPad, go to Settings > General > About and look for the title tab Model name.

As for Macs, Stage Manager supports any model running MacOS Ventura. The following Macs support the latest OS version:

  • MacBook: 2017 and later
  • MacBook Air: 2018 and later
  • MacBook Pro: 2017 and later
  • Mac Mini: 2018 and later
  • iMac: 2017 and later
  • iMac Pro: 2017 and later
  • Mac Pro: 2019 and later
  • Mac Studio: 2022

To check the specific Mac model you own, click the Apple icon in the menu bar at the top left of your screen and choose About this Mac.

Update your iPad and Mac

If your device supports Stage Manager, the next step is to make sure it’s running the latest version of iPadOS or MacOS. Before updating, we strongly recommend backing up your files. To see the exact software version your iPad is running, tap Settings > General > Software Update. Tap the latest version (iPadOS 16.2) and select Download and install. For Mac, click the Apple logo in the upper left corner of the screen and then click About this Mac to make sure you’re running MacOS Ventura. If you haven’t, go to System Preferences > Software Update and click Update now (or Upgrade now). From there, the download and installation process will begin.

How to turn on Stage Manager

Photo: Apple

To turn on Stage Manager on your IPad:

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