Switching from app to app (and picking the correct one) can cost valuable time and focus; every time it happens, the brain has to readjust to a different user interface and a different positioning of things on the screen.
It’s very unusual now that anyone who works primarily on a desktop or laptop uses only one piece of software for their entire day. In fact, it was reported in 2017 that the average number of apps used by a typical business worker uses between 9 and 10 different apps to perform their daily tasks.
This is where Snap Layouts and Snap Groups come in.
Snap Layouts have been part of windows for some time, and users of Windows 10 may be familiar with them. The feature allows you to drag a window or tool into one corner or edge of the screen and “snap” it there, instead of just rearranging open windows by hand or switching between them using alt and tab keys or the taskbar. You can resize and move snapped windows to your liking.
What Windows 11 does differently is twofold; first of all, snap layouts are more configurable and more easily accessible than they were previously. You can select from predefined layouts quickly and simply by hovering over an application’s maximise button, or adjust them to make your own layout. The second part is an entirely new feature – Snap Groups.
Snap Groups allow you to predefine a group of applications you want to open and the configuration you want them to be open in. So, if you want the left third of your screen as one app and the others sharing the remaining two-thirds, split vertically, you can arrange them this way and simply save them as a Snap Group. Next time, you need only press one button and all of those apps will be launched in the configuration you saved them in.
A timesaving and potentially incredibly useful multitasking feature, especially for those who may use multiple snap groups, or multiple monitors. It’s possible to save one group for your primary monitor and one for your second, if, for example, you have a laptop that you dock.