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(via Business Insider)

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The next version of iOS (iOS 9) expected to be announced this June at Apple’s WWDC event will feature a split-screen viewing mode for iPad apps, according to Mark Gurman of 9to5Mac

Split-screen viewing modes would let iPad owners use two different apps at the same time, or even let two different views of the same app appear side by side. For example, you could search for a restaurant on Safari on one side of the screen and check where it is on Apple Maps on the other, or you could have an open email on one side while you compose a new email on the other. 

Indeed, split-screen functionality would add newfound productivity to the iPad, which currently can only display one app on its screen. It could make a lot of sense for Apple’s purported large 12-inch iPad, too, where having a single app take up such a large display would be a waste of display real estate.

iPads are essentially very large touchscreen iPods designed primarily with content and entertainment consumption in mind, but they compare poorly against Microsoft’s line of Surface tablets when it comes to productivity. iPad sales have been consistently declining year-over-year as growth and interest cools down because there’s little reason for consumers to purchase newer models. Split-screen apps and a larger version of the iPad could help reinvigorate interest in the iPad.

Of course, there are productivity apps available in the Apple App Store, like Microsoft Office and Google Docs. But if you’ve ever tried writing a research-based document on an iPad, you’d know that multitasking and constantly switching between Safari and a word processing app isn’t ideal. In fact, it’s extremely slow and frustrating.

SEE ALSO: REVIEW: Despite Microsoft’s Claims, The Surface Pro 3 Won’t Replace Your Laptop

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