How to Use Your Phone as a Wi-Fi Mouse

Who needs a Swiss Army Knife when you have a smartphone?

What to Know

  • Install Unified Remote, Remote Mouse, or PC Remote on your computer and phone.
  • Ensure both phone and computer are connected to the same Wi-Fi network.
  • Choose the desired activities in the app.

This article explains how to use an Android smartphone or iPhone as a Wi-Fi mouse, remote control, and keyboard using Unified Remote, Remote Mouse, or PC Remote.

Best Smartphone Mouse Apps

Unified Remote, Remote Mouse, and PC Remote apps are excellent options for turning your smartphone into a mouse for your computer. We gave each of them a test run using an Android smartphone and Windows PC.

All three apps are intuitive, and the mouse/touchpad function worked without a noticeable delay on each. The keyboard function on Unified Remote and Remote Mouse worked fine, but we found ourselves wishing we could use our smartphone's keyboard. For anyone who needs a remote or wireless mouse, we recommend any of these three apps. 

Unified Remote

Unified Remote by Unified Intents works with Windows, Macs, and Linux computers and is available in free and paid versions. The free version includes 18 remotes, multiple themes, and third-party keyboard support. The paid version adds more than 40 premium remotes and the ability to create custom remotes. Remote options include a keyboard and mouse. The premium version also supports screen mirroring on PCs, Macs, and Android devices. It has voice control and integrates with Wear (formerly Android Wear) and Tasker. There's also a version for TVs, set-top boxes, game consoles, and other devices. Unified Remote can also control other connected devices, including Raspberry Pi.

Remote Mouse

Remote Mouse (free with in-app purchases) works with PCs, Macs, and Linux. The app provides a touchpad to control your computer with swipe motions and an on-screen keyboard. You can adjust sensitivity and speed settings as you would with a computer mouse.

PC Remote

PC Remote (free from Monect) works on Windows PCs and turns your Android or Windows phone into a keyboard, touchpad, and game controller. You can play PC games with customized button layouts and project images from your smartphone onto your computer.

How to Set Up Your Mobile Mouse

Each of these three apps has a desktop app and a mobile app that work together. The setup is similar across each.

  1. Install the PC server software for the app you are going to use. Follow the software installation instructions or wizard. This example uses Unified Remote.

    screenshot - Download and set up Unified Remote server on Windows
  2. Install the mobile version of the app on one or more phones or tablets.

    Install Unified Remote on Android screenshot
  3. Connect each device to the same Wi-Fi network.

  4. Choose your activity. Choices include media, games, file manager, and others.

    screenshot - Using Unified Remote as a mouse on Android

After it's set up, the desktop app appears in the menu bar on your PC, and you can change the settings in the mobile app and toggle between activities. Slide your fingers to navigate around the screen, pinch and zoom, and left-click and right-click using gestures.

When at home, use your phone mouse to play music or videos. If you have multiple devices, people can take turns playing DJ. At a cafe, be productive without carrying around much equipment; just make sure your smartphone and PC are on the same Wi-Fi network. Out on the road, use your phone remote to make a presentation or run a slide show.

Advantages of Using a Smartphone as a Mouse

When you connect your smartphone to your computer, you can control music and video playback and volume, type quick notes, input a password, and navigate documents on the web.

It's also handy when making presentations or if you want to mirror your screen. Turning your phone into a mouse is particularly convenient when your laptop's touchpad is broken or not acting correctly.

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