Search
Clear search
Close search
Google apps
Main menu

Connect to keyboards, mice, & other devices

Some of this information applies only to devices running Android 5.0 and higher. If your device is running 4.4 or lower, the Menu icon looks like this More. If your device is running 4.3 or lower, the Settings icon looks like this Settings.

You can connect a keyboard, mouse, or even a joystick or other input device to your device via USB or Bluetooth and use it just as you would with a PC. Important: USB is not supported for connecting these devices to a Nexus 4.

Important: External devices, like a USB keyboard or Bluetooth mouse, can drain your device's battery faster. If you're using more than one USB device at a time, you can save battery life by using a powered USB hub.

Pair with Bluetooth devices

First you have to pair and connect a Bluetooth input device to your phone or tablet

Pair and connect a Bluetooth input device to your phone or tablet
  1. Make sure your Bluetooth input device is in pairing mode.
    • Touch Settings > Wireless & Networks > Bluetooth.
    • Make sure Bluetooth is turned on.
  2. Touch the name of your device near the top of the screen, so that the text below says "Visible to all nearby Bluetooth devices".
  3. Select the device you want to connect to:
    • Android 5.0 or higher: Select the device from the list of available devices.
    • Android 4.4 and lower: Touch Search for devices. When the name or ID of your Bluetooth device appears, touch it and follow the instructions.

Keyboards

In addition to entering text, you can use your keyboard to navigate your device's features:

  • Use the arrow keys to select items on screen.
  • Pressing Return when an item is selected is equivalent to touching that item.
  • Pressing Escape is equivalent to touching Back.
  • Press Tab or Shift-Tab to move from field to field in a form or other screen with multiple text fields.

Mice

When you connect a mouse to your device and move the mouse, an arrow-shaped cursor appears, just as on a computer:

  • Use the mouse to move the cursor.
  • Clicking, pressing, and dragging with the mouse button is equivalent to touching, touching & holding, and dragging with your finger.
  • Only one mouse button is supported.
  • If your mouse has a trackball or scroll wheel, you can use it to scroll both vertically and horizontally.

Other input devices

You can connect joysticks, gamepads, and other input devices to your device. If they work without special drivers or adapters on your PC, they will likely work with your device. However, games and other apps must be designed to support any special features of an input device, such as dedicated buttons or other controls, to take full advantage of them.

Amy

Amy is an Android expert and author of this help page. Leave her feedback below about the page.

Was this article helpful?