How to Toggle Between the Desktop and Tablet Mode in Windows 10

By Andy Rathbone

In Windows 10, you can toggle between Tablet mode and using your tablet as a desktop. Some people work with Windows 10 on a tablet; others prefer a desktop. Still others prefer a tablet that can double as a desktop by adding a keyboard and mouse.

Making your tablet work like a desktop PC can introduce a problem, though: Tablets work best with your fingertips, but the desktop is best controlled with a mouse and keyboard.

To please both camps, Windows 10 lets you toggle Tablet mode on and off. Turning on Tablet mode, for example, makes all of your apps and programs fill the screen. (The Start menu runs full screen as well.) Tablet mode also subtly increases the spacing between your menus and icons, making them easier to tap with fingers.

In many cases, Window 10 notices how you’re working and automatically turns Tablet mode on and off when necessary. (Microsoft calls that special sense Continuum.) But if you find Windows 10 working in the wrong mode, follow these steps to toggle between Tablet mode manually:

  1. Click the Taskbar’s Action Center icon.

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    The Action Center icon lives near the right edge of the taskbar, that strip running along the bottom of every screen.

    The Action Center pane appears.

    The Action Center pane’s lower four buttons offer easy-to-reach settings, including the Table

    The Action Center pane’s lower four buttons offer easy-to-reach settings, including the Tablet mode toggle.
  2. Tap the Tablet Mode button along the bottom left of the Action Center pane.

    When the Tablet mode button is highlighted with color, Tablet mode is on; when the button’s color disappears, Tablet mode is off and the desktop behaves normally.

    To fetch the Action Center pane quickly on a tablet, slide your finger in from the screen’s right edge. The Action Center pane appears, letting you quickly tap the Tablet mode toggle.