It’s taken a little while, but OS X El Capitan’s split-screen multitasking (see also, iOS 9 for iPad) has become one of my favourite features of Apple’s latest desktop OS.
Although it’s useful to focus and utilize the entire MacBook screen, I find it more useful on the larger 27” iMac. The extra large screen provides lots of room for plenty of distractions, and eliminating those extra windows with split-screen multitasking has been a boon to my productivity.
I do, however, wish Apple would allow a way to have a third window enter the split-screen mode. Ideally I’d have research pieces on the right and left side and have a document or spreadsheet in the middle. This would work on smaller screens as well, as all three windows would adjust to their screen allotment and would be used in tandem. I foresee this being ideal on an iPad Pro, but I’ll have to wait and see.
Getting in and out of split-screen mode could also use some work. Holding down the full-screen button in the top left hand corner enters split-screen mode, but if you already have a full-screen app open on its own, using the full-screen button is not how you engage split-screen mode. Instead, you have to drag a window on top of a full-screen app in Mission Control. I feel there is a disconnect here which could be fixed in a quick software update.
These two nitpicks aside, I find myself using split-screen mode more and more on OS X El Capitan. It’s my favourite way to work and to zone in without Twitter or email distractions. I hope to see more OS X developers implement split-screen mode in the near future.