How to cancel split screen on iPad

Updated: March 13, 2023
6 min read
How to cancel split screen on iPad
by Oliver Maslou
Tech Expert & Writer
Checked by
Quality Control team

The split screen feature can drastically increase your productivity: you can write essays, create multiple illustrations, or do research jobs in multiple windows at the same time. Before iPadOS 15, you could split the screen only on certain apps, but this version changed everything. Now when you turn on Split View, you can simultaneously work in most apps.

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Moreover, the new iPadOS 16 has brought this feature to a new level: Stage Manager allows you to create multiple independent windows and change their sizes. But what to do if you don’t want to use this feature? Howly experts have simple instructions on how to get rid of split screen on iPad.

What tablets have the Split View feature?

This type of browsing is only available on some Apple tablets. Here are they:

  • iPad Pro;
  • iPad 5 Gen (or later);
  • iPad Air 2 (or later);
  • iPad mini 4 (or later).

You should be in the Dock bar to launch Split View. So you can launch it only with recently used applications.

How to get rid of the split screen on iPad: 4 available methods

There are 4 ways to bring the view to the default values. Which will be better to use depends on the split screen type. If it’s a classic Split View, you can swipe the window out from the screen. But if you are an owner of a device with iPadOS 13 or later, you will need to close a window or disable the Stage Manager feature.

Cancel the split screen manually

Cancel the split screen manually

The easiest way to get rid of the split screen on the iPad is to undo the separation. Stick to this instruction:

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  1. Find the grey controller in the black divider bar.
  2. Drag it to one side. If you want to use the app on the right part of the screen, swipe the controller to the right.
  3. Release the finger (or stylus) when the divider gets to the end of the display.

It’s the fastest way to bring the view to the default values!

Close Safari tabs

With the Split View feature, you can open 2 Safari windows simultaneously. It’s a relief for those who do a lot of research. If you want to close the second window, follow the same instruction: find the grey controller on the dividing bar and drag it out of the screen.

Also, you can remove all tabs on the second window. After you shut down the last tab, it will turn off the current window and cancel Split View. Follow these easy steps:

  1. Tap on the URL. It will open the Safari navigation.
  2. Tap on the grey X button on the tab bar to close the page. Repeat this step until you shut down all tabs.
How to close all Safari tabs on Split View

Close the window in Stage Manager

This useful macOS feature finally migrated to the iPad on late October 2022 with iPadOS 16. From now on, it is more than just two side-to-side screens. It’s multiple independent windows that you can easily resize.

This feature is usually disabled. So if you are struggling with multiple opened windows, you have accidentally turned the Stage Manager on. How to cancel it? First of all, close the apps with this instruction:

  1. Long-tap on the three dots on the top of the selected window.
  2. Choose Close.

If you want to get rid of this split screen feature on iPad completely, stick to this guide:

  1. Go to Settings.
  2. Find the Home Screen & Multitasking.
  3. Look for the Stage Manager line and tap on it.
  4. Switch off the Stage Manager toggle.

That's how easily you can disable the Stage Manager on the latest iPads. You can switch it off from the Control Center bar. Swipe down to call the menu, and find the button with three dots. Tap on it to temporarily disable Stage Manager.

Turn off the Stage Manager

Disable the Split View

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The Split View is enabled by default on all devices that run on iPadOS15 or higher. But don’t worry, you can still quickly disable this feature. All you need is to stick to this instruction:

  1. Open Settings General.
  2. Look for Multitasking & Dock line.
  3. Find Allow Multiple Apps switch and tap on it.
How to shut down Split View

Repeat these steps and switch the toggle to bring the Split View feature back.

Final Thoughts

Year by year, iPads become more like mini computers. Most devices made after 2017 have a built-in Split View feature, while the latest versions with iPadOS can simultaneously open up to 4 independent windows.

But if you want to get rid of the split screen on the iPad and use it like a regular tablet, you have four ways to disable this feature.

If you're going to shut down Split View and Stage Manager completely, visit Settings and switch the toggles.

But if you want to shut down them temporarily, find a grey controller with three dots.

If you use Stage Manager, press until you see the menu. Select the Close option.

If you use Split View, find the three grey dots on the black divider. Press on it and swipe left or right. This action will help you to cancel the split screen on the iPad.

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