Your tablet came with a functioning internal keyboard which you can use to create online searches, scroll through content, compose emails, and respond to social media posts. Even though it probably has a keypad, it’s not always convenient or easy to use. The built-in keyboard is often awkward and has a slower response, leading many tablet owners to wonder if they can connect an external mouse.
You can use a mouse and keyboard with a tablet if it supports the Android Operating System. It’s not hard to connect the devices and there are various options that are definitely worth looking into. Some external mice work with updated iPads as well.
Whether you want to improve functionality or make the device more convenient to use, you can connect a mouse to a tablet, along with a keyboard whether it’s something like an Apple iPad (on Amazon) or an Amazon Fire HD (also on Amazon). However, there are some limitations to doing so and a number of options to choose from.
How to Connect a Mouse and Keyboard to a Tablet
You can use a mouse with your tablet and this will definitely make things a lot easier to use, at least in some cases. Chances are, you’ll also want to connect an external keyboard. Thankfully, connecting a mouse and keyboard to an Android tablet is also an easy process which we’ll explore in more detail below.
Connecting A Mouse/Keyboard Via USB or Bluetooth
Your Android tablet doesn’t come with full-sized USB ports, so you’ll need to use a USB on-the-go cable like this one (Amazon link). It’s inexpensive and easy to find at most electronics stores and online and they usually work as an adapter. One end plugs into the tablet’s micro USB port and the other allows the mouse or keyboard to connect.
With that said, not every tablet is compatible with a USB adapter. If you need to learn more before buying, you can find the specifications in the user manual or by googling your device. If plugging a mouse in isn’t an option, you can still connect one using a different method which we’ll touch on shortly.
A Bluetooth enabled device is a great option for those that don’t want the clutter of another cord or the tablet doesn’t have a compatible USB port. It’s also simple to connect a Bluetooth enabled device. Under “settings” on your tablet find the option for “Bluetooth”. Select it, and the tablet will pair with the device. You do need to make sure the mouse and keyboard are turned on – along with the tablet – during syncing.
How to Connect Using a Docking Station
If you have space, and portability isn’t the main concern, you can also use a docking station to connect a mouse and keyboard to your tablet. The docking station not only comes with full-size USB ports, but it also allows you to adjust the tablet’s angle for better visibility. You don’t need to buy a micro-USB cable, but you will need a standard one to connect each device.
It’s important to note that you will have to deal with additional cords, including the power adapter for the docking station. If your goal is to improve the tablet’s functionality without adding cords, you may have to look into another option, notably, to invest in a Bluetooth mouse and keyboard.
Great Keyboard and Mouse Options for Tablets
If you’ve decided that you want to use Bluetooth wireless connectivity for the mouse and tablet, you have plenty of options. You can find the components separately or as a package. Either option comes at a variety of price tags. Whether you choose to connect both a mouse and keyboard or only one, there are a few things to consider.
What to Look For in a Bluetooth Mouse/Keyboard Pair
Choosing a Bluetooth mouse and keyboard combo is a popular option with power tablet users. They get the ease of scrolling and clicking from the mouse, along with all of the advantages a keyboard offers. While most sets making typing and scrolling through content easy, there are a few features you should look for.
Look for Durability When Searching for a Bluetooth Mouse/Keyboard
You want to consider durability for a few reasons. Chances are, you plan on using the mouse and keyboard regularly. Daily wear and tear will determine how often you have to replace the peripheral devices. It also helps if the mouse is built into the keyboard. Not only does it save time connecting devices, but also space. This may not be your preference if you’re looking for the speed of a standalone mouse, though.
Consider Compatibility When Buying A Bluetooth Mouse/Keyboard
Compatibility is another factor to look into because not all Android tablets are compatible with every Bluetooth device. Put simply, you want to choose a universal mouse and keyboard that will pair with any Android tablet, so make sure you take the time to figure out whether your devices are compatible or not.
Look at Signal Range Before Purchasing Bluetooth/Mouse Keyboard
Another important thing to look at is the signal range, which is something you should consider if you’re the type of person who likes to move around a lot, whether it’s on your couch, on your bed, or maybe at a separate table further away from your device. This can become a problem if your tablet is plugged into another larger screen that you’re not sitting close to, like if you’re using a table to run a home entertainment center.
Other Factors to Keep in Mind When Buying a Bluetooth Mouse/Keyboard
Being able to switch the mouse and keyboard between different devices is always convenient. You may want to be able to pair with your tablet, laptop, or your smart TV. Having a place on the keyboard to hold the tablet is another nice option you might want to look into. If you’re interested in such a keyboard/mouse combination, there are a few options.
There is a mouse and keyboard combo that comes with these features and more. It makes switching between devices a breeze and has a handy slot to hold your tablet. It’s the Logitech Master To-Go (from Amazon) and it boasts shortcut keys from both laptops and mobile devices. If you want a Bluetooth keyboard and mouse but you’re not sure where to start, you can’t go wrong with this entry-level option.
You can use a mouse and keyboard with your Android tablet and you also have options on how you connect the peripheral devices. If your tablet supports a USB cable, even a micro one, you can use it to connect the mouse and keyboard. Another option is to use a docking station, however, like a micro USB cable, you’re still adding cords to your setup.
A Bluetooth keyboard with an internal mouse improves the functionality of the tablet, while also eliminating extra cords. Furthermore, users love them because it’s possible to move within a designated range, sometimes up to 30-feet. A Bluetooth keyboard and keypad isn’t necessarily the right option for everyone, but it does come with certain advantages.