The simple answer is “Yes”. iPad can’t be considered a complete alternative to a real monitor, of course in terms of size and price, but it can be used as a second monitor at your desk.

The computers bearing the necessary ports or the Windows having must-have apps, allow the users to add on monitor screens in accordance with their work capacity.

Additional screens produce more space for your open programs, allow you to expand your screen view, and multiply the job done at your desk.

The person who needs to be more productive tends to use multiple monitors like a coder, a gamer, or a computer geek. If you own a Mac and an iPad then Sidecar is undoubtedly the best option for getting a second display at your desk.

You can either use the USB port or can do it wirelessly using Bluetooth, Handoff, and Wi-Fi. If you want to shift to either option, you have to disconnect first and then re-connect through the AirPlay menu.

Also read: Response Time

Apple Tech

According to Apple, Sidecar works wirelessly until the distance between your Mac and iPad doesn’t exceed 10 meters.

Sidecar is an in-built feature that comes with most modern Macs like macOS Catalina (10.5) onwards and iPads like iPadOS 13 onwards. You just need to know a few simple steps to set up an iPad as a second monitor for your Mac.

Under the Apple menu, click on System Preferences to open the Sidecar options windows. Select Device to choose your iPad from the drop-down menu.

Select Use as Separate Display from the Sidecar menu to choose the iPad’s role. Most people don’t own a macOS, no problem, they can add a second display on their Windows PC with the help of third-party apps.

There are multiple options to use, you can select them to your own preferences. Firstly, we’re mentioning two apps that are free to use.

Also read: What is best resolution for gaming?

Can IPad Be Used As A Monitor?


The Splashtop app works on all iPad models connecting the iPad to the PCs having Windows 7, 8, or 10. Splashtop wired Xdisplay requires a lightning cable to connect.

You just need to download Splashtop apps, one on your PC and another on your iPad. To set up your iPad as a second monitor, next you need to install iTunes on your computer.

A few more touches on the screens and there you go; your second display is ready to use.

If you want to go wireless through Splashtop, you have to pay $5. Unfortunately, Splashtop offers a free version that works only for ten minutes at a time, you need to spend money if you need to use a second screen on regular basis.

Also read: What are the benefits of a portable monitor?


The Spacedesk app connects wirelessly and is free to use. There is no need to connect the PC and the iPad via any cable, which enables you to charge your iPad during usage as well.

Just download Spacedesk apps on both your PC and iPad and then open the Spacedesk official website to install Spacedesk software on your PC, a few more tapings will take you to the world of an advanced level user.

Some other apps like iDisplay ($20), Air Display ($15), and Duet Display ($19), are popular alternatives to wireless connections.

You can choose according to your capacity, it’s up to you. The apps under $20 or less are cheap alternatives for a second monitor with a touchscreen to an iPad.

Also read: How To Setup Dual Monitors On A Laptop?

Duet Display

Duet display offers a fast connection via the same 30-pin or Lightning cable that is used for charging your iPad. Other apps use Wi-Fi to provide a second screen but the slow connection, for example, kills the enthusiasm to play games.

You can say Duet Display not only works with the iPad but also works well with the 12.9-inch iPad Pro. In my opinion, the best app providing you with the smoothest experience possible is Duet Display.

Like Splashtop, two apps link together to make a connection between your computer and your iPad. The server app for your computer is free but the iPad app cost $10.

The standard version of the app is connected over USB adds a touch bar to your windows and supports iPad keyboards as well. Install both apps and plug the cable into your computer and iPad.

Your cursor can travel both screens, even you can touch the iPad to control Windows. It’s your call to adjust your display settings like the Position of your iPad.

You are advised to keep your Framerate at 60 FPS and Performance at High Power if your iPad has good battery timing. Then select a medium resolution option to get an optimum quality display.

For more features like remote desktop, wireless connectivity, and improved graphics, an in-app subscription “Duet Air” costs around $20 per year, while another subscription “Duet Pro” with more advanced features costs $30 per year.

Duet Display is a bit more expensive than other options but its offerings are well worth the price. Duet Display is a quite useful addition to extend your monitor setup with a touchscreen iPad.

Also read: What is refresh rate?

Air Display

Secondly, Air Display was the app of choice before Duet Display. Avatron Software’s Air Display was considered a champ for providing a second screen to your desktop.

Air Display 3 only works with Macs and uses the cable for connection between iPad and Mac. Air Display 2 is available if you want a second screen via Windows.

Also read: Curved Vs Flat Monitors


Another option to use for converting your iPad into a second monitor for your PC is displayed. It is a bit pricier option, but if you are willing to pay this much price then I would suggest
choosing the best among all options will be a wise move.

In the second thought, another important question arises in the minds of the users whether the display provided by the iPad will be as good as an actual second monitor or not? Not Really.

A full-sized iPad has a 9.7-inch display that won’t give you as much view as a 22-inch actual monitor display.

Thankfully, there is a way to improve your dual-screen setup. Whether using an iPad wirelessly or via wire, you can set your iPad display through Windows Settings.

If your computer’s display is mirroring on your iPad, you can extend the original display by selecting the Extend option from the drop-down box of Multiple Displays in Windows Settings.

You can choose different project modes via a shortcut key (Window key + P).

There are ways to mirror the entire screen of your computer to an iPad, or even you can use an Android device as a second monitor.

Enjoy your dual monitor setup!

Also read:

What Is Overdrive On A Monitor?
Are Portable Monitors Worth For Gaming?
How to clean a monitor screen?

Mehtab Ayyub

View all posts


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *