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How to Create and Use Smart Stack Widgets on iPad [Video Tutorial]

18th September 2020

Jacob Woolcock


In this short tutorial I’ll show you how to take full advantage of the new Smart Stacks widgets in iOS14 and iPadOS14 to take your Widget skills up to the next level. I’ll show you two different ways to create Smart Stacks, how to delete and remove widgets from a Smart Stack and how the built-in machine learning works to show you the most relevant widget at the most relevant time for you. It takes seconds to learn, but mastering Smart Stack Widgets will save you hours!

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Let me show you how to take your Widget game to a whole new level by embracing Smart Stacks. And hey, if you find this video helpful, why not subscribe to my channel? I post loads of #QuickTips all about iPad and iPhone, and I’m sure you’ll find more videos helpful as well.

A Smart Stack will let you have up to 10 different Widgets all in the space of one, and you can swipe through them at any time. There are two different ways to create a Smart Stack. The first way is to tap-and-hold to add a Widget like you normally would, but then scroll down to the category called Smart Stack. From here, you can choose Small, Medium, or Large, and it will come pre-filled with a selection of apps for you. Drag this to where you want the Widget to go. When it’s in place, you can then swipe up and down to browse through the Widgets in that stack.

The other way to create a Smart Stack is to drop one Widget on top of another one of the same size. So, I’m going to add a new Widget here and I’ll put it on top of my medium-sized Widget that’s in my sidebar already. You’ll notice a little grey box goes around my Widget, and when I let go, I’ve now created a Smart Stack with those two Widgets! You can put up to 10 Widgets in one stack, so I’ll add a couple more in a second, and then, just like before, you can swipe up and down to move between the Widgets.

Another important thing to know about Smart Stacks is that it’s easy to remove a Widget from a stack as well. Simply tap-and-hold on the stack itself and then select Edit Stack. This is helpful if the ones that came as default aren’t always the ones you want, or if you simply changed your mind. From here, you can swipe-to-delete and you can rearrange your Widgets as well.

You may notice that Smart Rotate button in the top corner, and that’s a really clever feature of this new Widget system. With Smart Rotation enabled, your iPad or iPhone will use Machine Learning to work out what Widgets you tend to view, at what time, and in which place. That means that over time it will then start showing you those Widgets automatically, as it will start to learn what you like. For instance, when you go to work, it might show your Calendar; when you get up in the morning, it might show your Weather; when you go to bed at night, it might show your Alarms.

This is a really powerful feature built into iOS and iPadOS 14.

Hey, thanks for watching that video! Now, if you enjoyed that and you want to find some more #QuickTips for your iPad or to use in your classroom, please do me a favour and press the Subscribe button down below. That will really help me out, and it’ll help you keep up to date with all the latest tips and tricks on my YouTube Channel.

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