KEY POINTS

  • Apple launched the iPadOS 13.4 beta version recently
  • The new iPad operating system offers support for PC keyboards
  • iPadOS 13.4 will also allow user to disable certain keys

iPad owners who've always wanted to use their PC keyboards on the Apple tablet will be glad to know that the latest iPadOS version, iPadOS 13.4, now enables non-Mac and non-iPad keyboards to be used on it.

Previously, iPad users who don't have a Mac will need to buy keyboards specific for the iPad. These keyboards, which include the smart keyboard, allows users to do a lot of things on their Apple tablet like type documents and communicate with people faster, without having to use the on-screen keyboard.

Cult of Mac noted that iPad owners who wanted to work on their tablets faster were stuck with Mac-compatible keyboards only. This is because some of the most important keys in the Mac or iPad keyboard, like the Command and Option keys, would be placed the other way around if the user connects a PC keyboard instead.

Thankfully, Apple has given iPadOS 13.4 the ability to remap modifier keys so they will function as the user intends. Here's how to use it:

  • First, users must make sure that their iPads are updated to iPadOS 13.4 in order for this to work. Any older iPadOS or iOS version, and this won't work right off the bat. iPadOS 13.4 is still in beta at the moment, though, which means users might need to wait a while for Apple to release the final version.
  • Second, once the device has been updated to iPadOS 13.4, users will need to connect a PC keyboard to it, iMore noted. The option to remap keys only appears when keyboards are plugged in or connected via Bluetooth.
  • Third, after plugging a keyboard in, users should launch the Settings App, then head to General, then Keyboard, and then Hardware Keyboard. A new option called “Modifier Keys” should be visible here. As mentioned, this option only appears if the iPad is connected to a keyboard. If the option isn't visible, then users should try reconnecting their keyboards.
  • Last, users should tap on that option to see a field that allows them to remap the Command key, Option key, Control key, Caps Lock key and the notorious Globe key.

Users can swap functions between keys, assign the “escape” function to them, or simply assign “No action” if they want to disable the key.

iPad Pro iPadOS 13.4 allows PC keyboards to be used on the tablet. Photo: REUTERS/Beck Diefenbach