What is split-screen mode (multi window mode) in Android Nougat?
One of the most prominent new features in Android Nougat is the split-screen mode, aka, multi-window view. It is part of the multitasking and productivity enhancement features.
Split screen mode (multi-window view) allows you to run two apps side by side in Android Nougat.
Actually, some Android vendors already implemented such a feature in their customization.
LG also has own multi window solution,
But such customization usually only supports selected apps. In other words, you can only use a few apps in multi-window mode on such devices.
In Android Nougat, split-screen mode (multi window mode) is implemented in the system level. This means all apps are compatible with this feature.
And therefore, you can use any apps in spit-screen mode on the Android Nougat phones or tablets.
How to use split-screen mode (multi window mode ) in Android Nougat?
By default, split-screen mode is always enabled in Android Nougat. You do not need to enable anything.
To use split-screen mode in Android Nougat, you may follow these steps.
Step 1: Start the first app normally.
For example, you can use Chrome to browse a website as shown below.
After you tap and hold the overview button (aka Recent button), the Chrome window shrinks to half of the screen.
At the same time, the overview button changes from a square to two rectangles as shown below,
Step 3: Select the second app.
When the first app (Chrome browser in this example) shrinks to top half of the screen, the bottom half now shows recent apps.
You can tap any of the apps so that the app occupies the bottom part.
For example, as shown below, tap Google Play store as shown below.
Now, two apps are running together in the screen as shown below.
You copy text in one window and paste it to another app window.
How to resize screen size in split-screen mode (multi window mode ) in Android Nougat?
Once you are in the split-screen mode, you can resize the window size for each app.
To resize the app window, you can drag the “__” icon between the two windows as shown above.
For example, as shown above, you can drag the icon downwards to increase the window size for Chrome browser.
As shown below, now the Chrome browser occupies larger screen.
Of course, you can drag the icon upwards to increase the window size for the second app (Google Play store) as shown below.
Please note, currently, freeform mode is not supported on phones with Android Nougat and therefore, you cannot change the width of the app windows.
You can only change the height of the app window. The minimum height of an app window is about 35%.
If you drag the icon to further, it will exit multi window view.
Split-screen mode (multi window mode ) in landscape orientation
You can also use split-screen view in landscape orientation as shown below.
On phones with Android Nougat, you can NOT adjust the size of the app windows when in landscape orientation.
How to exit split-screen mode (multi window mode) in Android Nougat?
When you are in split-screen mode, you can tap and hold overview button as shown above to exit multi window view.
You can also resize the app window to cover whole screen to exit multi window mode.
Please note, you will NOT exit split-screen mode by tapping home button (see below).
What and where is freeform mode?
Freeform mode, which is also part of multi window feature in Android Nougat, allows you to resize both the width and height of individual app windows.
You can also let apps overlapping other apps with freeform mode.
However, freeform mode has not been officially released yet.
So, you cannot use freefrm mode at this time.
Alternative way to launch the second app in multi-window view in Android Nougat
As mentioned above, you can launch second app from the list of recent apps.
But if the app is not in the list, you can launch it by following these steps:
Step 1: Start first app.
Step 2: Tap and hold overview button.
Step 3: Tap home button when the first app shrinks to half of the screen. After tapping home button, you will be directed to home screen. But you are still in split-screen mode.
Step 4. Launch second app in home screen or apps screen (app drawer). You can launch any apps to fill the second half of the screen.
Please note, when you are in split-screen mode, you can tap home button to return back to home screen. This does NOT exit split-screen mode. Any apps launched will be fit into the second app window.
Although you can launch other apps to replace apps in the second app window, you cannot change the app in the first app window.
Can you use split-screen mode in Android Nougat? Do you know how to resize app window size in multi window view?
If you have any questions on split-screen mode (multi window view), please let us know in the comment box below.
For questions on Android Nougat (Android 7.0 and 7.1), please check Android Nougat guides page.
For questions on Android Marshmallow (Android 6.0), please check Android Marshmallow guide page.
For question on Android Lollipop (Android 5.0 and 5.1), please check Android Lollipop guide page.
For other Android questions or problems, please check Android 101 page.