One of the highlights of Samsung’s TouchWiz UI is the Multi Window view, a multitasking mode that allows users to run two tasks or apps simultaneously in landscape or portrait mode. The feature, which was first made available on the Galaxy Note 2 last year, also comes pre-installed on this year’s Galaxy S4 flagship. So how do you enable it?
1. Go to Notification Bar
After turning on and unlocking your Galaxy S4, pull down the notification bar at the top. From there, at the top, you will see a set of widgets that will allow you to change certain functions and features on the Galaxy S4. Note that this row of widgets is not static and you can scroll horizontally by swiping left or right. Keep swiping from right to left until you see the “muti window” widget. If it is not green, it means the Muti Window is not active. You’ll want to activate it by tapping on it for the widget to turn green.
2. Muti Window Drawer
When the feature is enabled, you should see a semicircular tab on the left side of your phone, just off the edge of the screen. If you still don’t see this and Multi Window is confirmed to be enabled on your phone (see step 1), then press and hold the capacitive touch back button for two seconds. This should give you a semi-circle (gray with blue arrow) tab on the left edge.
Once you see this tab, you can tap on it and it will open the Multi Window drawer.
This drawer can be scrolled vertically and the drawer will show all apps compatible with Multi Window. Some third-party apps work with Multi Window as well as native Email, Messaging, and Browser apps. Facebook, Twitter, Evernote and Chrome will also work.
3. Simultaneous Multitasking
So how do you multitask at the same time? Open the Multi Window drawer (step 2). Click an app to launch the first app you want to use. In this example, I chose Browser. Then select the second app you want to use and instead of doing a simple tap, you can tap and hold and then drag the app out. This gives you the option to choose where you want to place the application. If the phone is held in portrait orientation, you can place the app on the top or bottom of the screen or left or right in landscape mode. I chose to open the pre-installed Office Suite Pro on the bottom of the phone.
4. Changing Which Two Apps to Use
Now that you’re multitasking at the same time, you can switch between any app you can use in the Multi Window drawer. Change the app you’re not currently using with the app you want to use by long pressing, dragging and dropping it to the top or bottom of your screen and you’re ready.
5. Resizing Your Windows
You can also resize your window or use an even distribution of screen real estate so that an app takes up more space on the screen. There is a gray bar between the two windows. Tap and hold the bar and move it in either direction to resize your windows.