Microsoft Unveils Split-Screen Software

Dennis Faas's picture

Microsoft Research India in Bangalore has developed new screen-splitting software. The software splits the screen into two halves, with each half having its own keyboard, mouse, desktop and applications. (Source:

"At the most basic level, we are allowing two users to work completely independently on the same machine, sharing both the processor and monitor," explained Assistant Researcher and Project Leader Udai Singh Pawar. (Source:

The working prototype operates on a standard 19-inch screen, but the software also works on 15 and 17-inch screens. Since the split-screen technology is software-based, it does not require that a company purchase new PCs. Companies using the split-screen solution would only need to purchase the software and a second mouse and keyboard. (Source:

While the software enables two users to use applications independently, it also allows for sharing. A user can move the cursor to the other half of the screen to allow for sharing and working on documents collaboratively. (Source:

The customers of the new software will likely be schools and businesses in developing countries, which are often technologically limited due to the high cost of hardware. (Source:

On the one hand, a split-screen monitor does not seem to allow for much personal space when using the shared computer -- let alone privacy.

But despite its pitfalls, the split-screen software remains a viable solution for developing countries. After all, the software lets two people work at a computer for the extra price of a keyboard and mouse. (Source:

Microsoft has scheduled field trials to begin mid-May. (Source:

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