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Air Display iOS App Review

Daniel Bell uses the Air Display iOS App to use his iPad as a second display for his laptop.

| Air Display in iOS Apps

Air Display iOS App Review:

The Air Display iOS app is part of a range of apps from Avatron which also includes Air Display. The app allows you to use your iOS device as a second monitor for your computer, ideal if you are using Aperture, Lightroom or Photoshop. The touch screen can be used to paint directly on to the surface in Photoshop.

Air Display iOS App Features

  • Works in both landscape and portrait orientations
  • You can choose to connect automatically to Air Display every time you launch the app
  • Connects over Wi-Fi, no wires needed
  • Runs full-screen or in a window
  • Keyboard support
  • Use AirPlay to do wireless video output to an Apple TV from iPad 2
NB. Air Display drivers for Windows require XP (32-bit only), Vista or 7 (32-bit or 64-bit), Windows 7 Starter edition is not supported. The Air Display drivers for Mac requires 10.6 (Snow Leopard) or later on an Intel CPU (32-bit or 64-bit). Air Display works on Mac OS X 10.7 (Lion) except for Mac models with the NVIDIA GeForce 9400M video adapter.

Air Display iOS App Review:   Air Display iOS App Review:

Air Display iOS App Performance

For this review the Air Display iOS App has been tested using an iPad and a laptop running Windows 7 Home Premium. As well as downloading the app to your iOS device you have to download and install the Air Display software to your computer. This is a five minute job that requires you to restart your computer to complete the installation. The Air Display symbol then appears in your notification area. With the Air Display app running on your iOS device, you simply click the symbol and select the device you wish to connect with. After a short time your iOS device will be showing a second display. You can move your programs around as if it were a second monitor. To launch the keyboard there is a symbol on your iOS device.

You can tell the program where your iOS device is positioned, therefore if it's on the left, you move things from the left side of your screen, and vice versa if it's to the right. If you change the orientation of your iOS device or wish to place it to the other side of your computer your open programs will return to your main display. You can also set it to enable/disable touch input and act as a mirror, rather than a second separate display. You can also check from your computer what the battery level is on your iOS device.

Occasionally there is a slight time lag between your input on the iOS device and what happens on your computer, particularly noticeable if you are using it in mirror mode. It's nothing which is going to reduce the usefulness of the app and will also depend on the speed of your Wi-Fi network. During testing, it didn't reduce the power level of the iPad any more than normal usage would.

Air Display iOS App Verdict

If you want a second display for your computer, it normally means you have to use a fairly bulky LCD screen which requires a cable to connect it as well as a power cable. This is OK if you have your computer  permanently set up on a desk, but this app combined with your iPad, means you can set up anywhere around the home or office without the need for cables. It also gives the added benefit of being able to utilise the touch screen.

It's unlikely you'd get as much use out of the iPhone version due to its much smaller size, but if you have an iPad and want a second screen, this is a must have app and well worth every penny of its £6.99 price tag.

Air Display iOS App Review:
The Air Display iOS App is easy to use and a very cheap way to use the iPad as a second monitor.

Air Display iOS App Pros

Easy to use
Makes a cheap second monitor out of your iPad
Touch screen on iOS device can be used as mouse

Air Display iOS App Cons

Changing screen orientation moves programs back to main screen


The Air Display iOS App is available from the iTunes Store for £6.99. For more information please visit the Avatron website.
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