- Development code in Android P points to a feature enabling you to use your phone as a wireless keyboard or mouse.
- You can do this currently in Android, but only if you root your device first. This new feature would eliminate the need to root.
- While not exactly a highly demanded feature, it would be incredibly useful to use your phone as a mouse in certain situations.
Over at XDA Developers, Android enthusiasts have been working tirelessly to round up all the rumors of upcoming features in Android P, the next iteration of the Android operating system. It looks like one of those features will be the ability to use your phone as a Bluetooth input device, like a wireless mouse or keyboard.
You can read the recent XDA blog post to get the nitty-gritty details, but essentially the code to perform wireless input functions has been present in Android since 2016. The Android team just never turned the feature on. Why, we don’t know, but it looks all but certain that the function will finally get switched on whenever Android P makes its debut.
Technically, rooted devices have had this feature for quite a while. Simply root your phone, download the Bluetooth Plus app, and then take your pick from any of the Bluetooth mouse/keyboard apps available on the Google Play Store.
However, making the feature built into Android will enable users to do this without rooting their phone, which is a big deal for people who are not tech savvy enough to root their device or who simply don’t want to go through the hassle.
You may or may not see any real advantage to using your phone as an HID (human interface device), but for people who give lots of presentations, it would be quite useful. Not having to carry around a wireless mouse with you to navigate through a presentation would be nice indeed. And people who use desktops as their media center control might like to use their phone to navigate around rather than keeping a wireless mouse on their coffee table.
Ultimately, we won’t know 100% for sure if this feature will be present in Android P until Google announces as such, but the code seems to support that certainty.
Now, the real question is: will it be Android Pie, Android Pop, or Android Popsicle?