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New app turns iPad into second screen for a PC or Mac

A newly released app enables iPad owners to use their tablet as a second monitor for their desktop PC.

Duet Display uses the iPad’s charging cord to connect to your PC and is now compatible with both Mac and Windows devices.

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Rahul Dewan, the app’s designer, claims that Duet Display is not just a novelty, but can prove useful in a work environment.

"A second display can increase productivity up to 48 per cent," he explained in an interview with Business Insider. "If you have an iPad, you already have that second screen. With Duet, you can finally use it. Otherwise, your $700 device is just sitting there."

While there are similar apps in existence, most of them use Wi-Fi to connect the second display, which can cause significant delay. By utilising a wired connection, Duet Display avoids this issue and still enables you to make use of all the touch-screen capabilities of your iPad.

Although Duet Display’s default setting uses the iPad’s full Retina resolution, this can be an issue for older PCs. As a result, the app also includes an energy saving function, allowing users to adjust the resolution and frame rate.

In order to set up your iPad as a second display, you simply have to download the app from the App Store (opens in new tab) and then download the respective software for your PC or Mac from the Duet Display website. Then a simple restart will see the app ready to go.

Read more: iPad Pro is on course for Q4 2015 launch

Duet Display costs £11.99 in the UK, but customers may feel like that is a relatively small price to pay compared with buying a second screen. The current version holds a 4-and-a-half stars approval rating, so iPad owners may want to give it a try themselves to see if that second screen really can boost their productivity.

Barclay has been writing about technology for a decade, starting out as a freelancer with IT Pro Portal covering everything from London’s start-up scene to comparisons of the best cloud storage services.  After that, he spent some time as the managing editor of an online outlet focusing on cloud computing, furthering his interest in virtualization, Big Data, and the Internet of Things.