How to Do Split Screen on Mac: A Step-by-Step Tutorial

I. Introduction

Split screen is a feature that allows Mac users to multitask efficiently, using two applications side by side on a single screen. Unlike using two separate windows, split screen mode provides a more organized workspace that users can switch between quickly, ultimately increasing productivity. This article aims to guide Mac users with a step-by-step tutorial on how to use this feature, provide keyboard shortcuts, troubleshoot common problems, and best practices for using split screen on Mac.

II. Step-by-Step Tutorial

Split screen mode is a time-saver for those who need to use two applications simultaneously on a Mac. On a single screen, one can easily manage and organize their work by sharing windows between applications. Below is a step-by-step tutorial on how to execute split screen on Mac.

  1. Open the apps you want to use in split screen mode.
  2. Click and hold on the green full-screen button at the top left of the active window.
  3. Drag the window to the left or right of the screen.
  4. Select another window to work in alongside the first window.
  5. Users can adjust the divider between windows by dragging it to a preferred location.
  6. To return to the regular mode, click the green button at the top left of the screen or press the Esc key.

If users tend to carry out the same type of split screen functions regularly, they can add keyboard shortcuts for easy access and rapid execution.

III. Video tutorial

For a visual guide, users can follow the official tutorial provided by Apple, explaining how to use split screen mode on Mac. The video highlights the necessary steps that one needs to take and makes it easier for users to grasp the concept. Here’s the link to the video tutorial:

By following along with the video, users can understand how to arrange apps in split view and how to adjust the windows. The video tutorial is a valuable resource for anyone who may need a little extra guidance.

IV. Comparison of split screen versus separate windows

Split screen mode on Mac is a great way to multitask smoothly. It provides several benefits when compared to opening two separate windows manually. Users can snap their apps in half and use them both together without having to resize or rearrange them ever again. Below are some advantages and disadvantages of split screen mode over separate windows.


  • Saves time and increases productivity
  • Allows users to focus on two apps at the same time
  • Better utilization of screen real estate
  • Apps automatically resize for the best split screen experience


  • Both apps should be open on the same desktop
  • Not everyone prefers to multitask
  • Smaller screen sizes might not be ideal to use it

One situation where separate windows work better than split screen mode is when users need to compare information from two different sources or files. For example, when a user needs to write an article while also referring to a website or a document, split screen mode is the preferred way. Conversely, if a user needs to make edits to two different files simultaneously, they can open two windows side by side.

V. Keyboard shortcuts

Keyboard shortcuts can be a massive time-saver, and split screen mode on Mac is no exception. Here are some essential keyboard shortcuts that users can use:

  • Split screen mode: Control + Command + F
  • Move between spaces: Control + Arrow Key
  • Minimize windows: Command + M
  • Close window: Command + W

Users can also customize their keyboard shortcuts by following these steps:

  1. Go to System Preferences > Keyboard > Shortcuts.
  2. Click on the Mission Control tab.
  3. Select the required keyboard shortcut to modify.
  4. Add the new shortcut by entering the desired combination of keys.

VI. Troubleshooting guide

While split screens may seem like a breeze, there can still be problems that users might face. Here are some of the common problems and how to fix them:

  • If split screen mode doesn’t work, go to System Preferences > Mission Control > and ensure the option ‘Displays have separate Spaces’ is selected.
  • If the divider is stuck, there might be an issue with the window’s minimum sizing. Resize the window of the application that won’t move in split screen mode.
  • Restart the Mac and check if split screen mode works.

Users may also have other issues specific to their setup. The best way to understand those problems is to search for a solution and customize settings according to their preferences.

VII. Best practices for using split screen

Now that users know all about split screen mode, here are some best practices to keep in mind:

  • Some applications may not work well with split screen mode. Apple applications work with split screen mode, but not all third-party apps may support it. Check the application documentation before trying to use it for split screen.
  • Regularly change the position of each window to prevent burn-in of the display.
  • Use keyboard shortcuts to run processes more efficiently.
  • If there is not sufficient space to fit both windows, users can zoom out by pinching two fingers on the trackpad or mouse to get everything in view.

VIII. Conclusion

Split screen mode on Mac provides a streamlined and efficient workspace for users who often need to multitask. The step-by-step tutorial, video resources, and troubleshooting guide provided in this article should make it easier for users to use this feature successfully. By following the best practices and keyboard shortcuts, users will be able to get the most out of their split screen experience.

If you have any other queries or want to share your split screen experience, feel free to leave a comment below.

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