Until now, Apple has always had a limit on how much RAM an iPadOS app is allowed to use, in order to keep its iPads running smoothly. But with some iPads now coming with as much as 16GB of RAM, Apple is now giving apps access to much more of it — as was first suspected when iPadOS 15 was announced earlier this year.
It seems that the maximum RAM capacity of the iPad Pro with an M1 chip can be 12GB for the 16GB model and 6GB for the 8GB model. This change is expected to speed up graphics-intensive applications such as modeling with the iPad Pro with the M1 chip and editing photos and videos.
Previously, you could only allocate up to 5GB to running apps, regardless of the RAM capacity of the iPad Pro with the M1 chip. The iPad Pro with M1 chip has 8GB of RAM for models with storage capacities up to 512GB and 16GB for models with 1TB and 2TB storage capacities.
The iPad Pro models are powered by the M1 chip which has less memory available (namely 8GB), Apple is letting apps request up to 6GB in iPadOS 15. The remaining 2GB are held back to keep all the necessary core processes up and running, and in no event will apps be allowed to eat into that last buffer (or the remaining 4GB on the 16GB iPad Pro version).
This new change could benefit graphic-intensive apps such as those for drawing, 3D modeling, photo editing, and video editing. Additional RAM can also help improve the multitasking user experience and make switching between apps easier. According to Apple, the new entitlement would be available on “supported devices,” and at this point, devices beyond the iPad Pro that could support this are unknown. In the case of the new iPad mini launched earlier this week, Apple is unlikely to allow apps to request more RAM since it has just 4GB RAM.