Turn your tablet into a PC monitor with Deskreen
Having a secondary screen has its benefits, but buying a second monitor may not always be a feasible solution. If you have a smart device lying around, say like an older tablet, you can now turn it into a secondary monitor for your PC using Deskreen. A free open-source app, Deskreen lets you use any device with a web browser as a second screen over Wi-Fi. Best of all, it offers support for Windows, macOS, and Linux.
The idea behind Deskreen was to offer something similar to what Apple has with Sidecar, allowing you to use your iPad as a secondary screen for your Mac. Even Samsung for that matter has just started offering a similar feature with a new update for its premium tablet, the Galaxy Tab S7. According to the developer of the app, “People nowadays are buying new devices very often and may have an old tablet, phone or laptop that they stopped using. If your old tablet, phone, or laptop is still able to run a browser, Deskreen can help you to bring new life to your old digital buddy, and you can start using it as a second monitor for your laptop.”
The app can work with Wi-Fi or LAN and you can use almost any device with a web browser as a second screen for your computer. Additionally, you can use any device’s web browser to mirror your computer screen or view a single application window from your computer screen. The app also supports multiple screen sharing sessions to as many devices as you want along with end-to-end encryption. To offer improved imaging quality, the app comes with support for changing picture quality while sharing a screen along with an auto quality change feature.
To have an extended desktop experience one needs to use the Dummy Display Plug. What is that? Well, it is a tiny plug similar to a USB flash drive. This is only required to be plugged into your computer to make it think that an external display is connected. According to the Deskreen website, Display Dummy Plugs can be bought in online stores such as Amazon, Aliexpress, eBay, or any of your local tech stores.
The app can be quite useful for someone who wants an inexpensive way to expand your display, especially if you need to monitor data or maybe host a presentation. It also comes across as a good solution if you just need a second screen temporarily and may not always need a second monitor to warrant investment into one.
How to use Deskreen
- Download the Deskreen app from the official website.
- After you have installed it, run the app to see a QR code. Scan it with a tablet or phone, or you can manually type the web address given below the QR code in your browser running on the secondary device.
- Once the connection has been established, a pop-up should appear on the app on your PC confirming the IP address, as well as other information including session ID, device OS, and more. Click on allow to start your session.
- Deskreen will now ask you to select what screen source you want to share. You will have the option of either sharing the entire screen or sharing an application window.
- If you want to share an app window, click on the Application Window Button and then click on the preview box to proceed to step seven.
- If you want to share the entire screen click on the ‘Entire Screen’ button. This option can be used if you want to mirror the entire screen or use it as a second screen. For this feature, you need to make sure that a Dummy Display Plug is connected.
- Double-check everything to make sure the settings and the correct mode has been selected. If you want to change anything, just click on the green ‘Connected info’ button.
- Once you are set, hit the confirm button at the bottom to start sharing your screen.
You can also check out the video below for more information:
Getting a second screen is actually a good way to boost productivity, especially if you switch between apps or tabs a lot. Deskreen comes off as a neat way to bring some utility to older devices that you may have lying around.