iPadOS 18 Lets You Format External Drives Like a Pro

Apple quietly added a powerful new feature to iPadOS 18: format external drives directly from your iPad! No Mac required. Learn more.

iPads borrow a useful macOS feature with iPadOS 18

While Apple didn't mention it at WWDC, iPadOS 18 quietly introduces a new feature that brings its capabilities closer to macOS: formatting external drives.

iPadOS 18
iPadOS 18

American developer Caleb Cadle discovered this handy addition within the Files app. Users can now format external storage directly from their iPads, a feature previously exclusive to Macs.

To do this, simply long-press on the external drive's icon within the Files app and select the "Erase" option from the context menu. You can choose between APFS, ExFAT, and MS-DOS (FAT) formats.

iPadOS 18

This feature is currently available to iPad users enrolled in the developer beta program. The stable release of iPadOS 18 is expected to arrive in Fall 2024.

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