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How To Use An iPad As A Second Monitor

Posted by ZUGU CASE on 4th Nov 2018

If you have a small laptop, you may find yourself yearning for more screen. Whether you are working, gaming, or just browsing, having dual screens can double your screen real estate. But what if you don’t have another screen? Can you use your iPad as a second monitor? Yes, you sure can! In fact, because this connection is software-based, using an iPad as a second screen may offer more benefits than a traditional monitor. These apps support things like touch, gestures, pressure sensitivity, Apple Pencil, added shortcuts, and more. Before you go out and buy a new monitor, read through this blog post and consider using your iPad as a second screen.

What You Will Need

To hook up your iPad to your laptop, you will need the following:

  • An iPad
  • A Lightning to USB cable
  • A computer
  • Software like Duet Display, iDisplay, or Air Display (learn more about these apps below)

How To Set It Up

To illustrate how to set up your second display, we are going to explain the process for setting up Duet Display.

  1. On your iPad Pro, download and open the Duet Display app. This app is also available for your iPhone.
  2. On your PC or Mac, venture over to the Duet Display website and download the app based on your type of computer.
  3. Install the companion app for your computer. This companion app is a crucial component because it allows your computer to communicate with your iPad.
  4. Open the Duet Display app on your iPad and connect the two using a Lightning cable.
  5. After following these steps, your computer and iPad Pro should both recognize each other, and you should be able to extend your display across two screens.

What Display App Should I Get?

Not sure which app you should go with to connect your devices? Below is some key information regarding three of the most popular dual screen apps.

Duet Display

While many apps offer the ability to connect your iPad to your computer via Wifi, Duet Display sets itself apart from the competition by connecting the two devices using the same Lightning cable you use to charge your iPad. Because of this link, Duet Display offers one of the best and most reliable connections, giving you the ability to watch, play, or work lag-free. Check out this Duet Display demo and download the Duet Display app here.

Air Display

Prior to Duet Display, Air Display was the go-to source for connecting your iPad to your monitor. This being said, Air Display still offers good performance and seems to be getting better. They recently released Air Display 3, which also wisely uses the iPad’s cable rather than relying on an unstable Wifi connection. But do take note that Air Display 3 only works with Macs. However, Air Display 2 does work with Windows. Download Air Display here.


One of the key selling points for iDisplay is that it works with about every device. It supports Mac OS, Windows, iOS, and Android. In addition to being one of the most compatible apps in its category, it also features 60fps resolution, supports multi-touch, and can be connected with a cable or wirelessly. Download iDisplay here.

Need an iPad Case With A Stand?

If you are going to connect your iPad to your computer, allowing you to double your screen real estate, don’t just set your iPad on your desk or lean it up against some books. You need an iPad case with a stand. At ZUGU CASE, our iPad cases not only have a magnetic stand that can be adjusted to multiple viewing angles, but our cases also offer protection and added functionality. Learn more about our iPad cases and shop ZUGU CASE