How to Use Safari's Split Screen

Use Split View Mode to open two Safari windows side-by-side on iPad

The Split View feature on certain iPad models can display two Safari browser windows side-by-side. Use this feature for multitasking or comparing web page content without switching between windows or tabs. There are multiple ways to initiate a Safari split-screen session on your iPad, depending on your needs.

Split View is only available on the following models with the latest version of iOS: iPad Pro, iPad (5th generation and later), iPad Air 2 and later, and iPad mini 4 and later.

How to Open a Link in Safari Split Screen

When you want to open a second web page so that it appears in the same window as an open web page, follow these steps:

  1. Open the Safari browser on your iPad.

    The iPad must be positioned in landscape mode.

  2. Locate the link you want to open in Split View. Tap and hold it until a pop-up menu appears.

  3. Tap Open in Split View.

    The "Open in Split View" command
  4. Two Safari windows appear side-by-side, one containing the original page and the other the destination page for the link.

    a screenshot of Safari in Split View mode on iPad

How to Open a Blank Page in Safari Split Screen

When you want to open a blank page in the same window as an existing web page, follow these steps:

  1. Open the Safari browser. 

  2. Tap and hold the Tabs icon, represented by two cascading squares and located in the upper-right corner of the browser window, until a pop-up menu appears.

    The Tabs button on an iPad
  3. Tap Open Split View.

    The "Open Split View" command
  4. Two Safari windows appear side-by-side, one containing the original page and the other a blank page, which may contain shortcuts to your saved Favorites.

    a screenshot of Safari Split View mode on iPad

How to Exit Safari Split Screen Mode

To exit Split View, tap and hold the Tabs icon in the lower-right corner of the window you want to close. When the pop-up menu appears, tap one of the following:

  • Merge All Tabs: Maintains all open tabs, combining the tabs into one Safari window.
  • Close All Tabs: Closes any tabs that are present in the selected window.
a screenshot of the Tabs menu in Safari Split View mode on iPad

You can also close each tab individually. Tap the gray and white X to the left of the tab until Split View is no longer active.

How to Add a Third App Window to Safari Split Screen

If side-by-side Safari windows aren't enough, you can add a third app to the mix with the iPad Slide Over feature. This additional window can be from any open app, not only the Safari browser.

Slide Over functionality is available in iOS 11 and above.

  1. Open two Safari windows in Split View using the instructions above.

    screenshot of Safari Split Screen on iPad
  2. Slowly swipe up from the bottom of the screen so that the Dock appears, overlaying the bottom portion of your Safari windows.

    Swipe up to open the Dock
  3. Tap and drag the icon for the app you'd like to open. Release the icon when it's in the middle of the screen.

    Dragging an app from the Dock
  4. A third app window appears, partially overlaying one of the Safari windows. 

    screenshot of Safari Split Screen with iTunes in Slide Over mode
  5. To reposition this window on the left or right side of the screen, tap and hold the horizontal gray bar at the top of it and slide the window to the desired location. 

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