Unless we talk about first-person shooters and similar games where the mouse & keyboard combo is unparalleled, gamepads and joysticks are much more useful with different games. It is hard to find a good and affordable gamepad, so what about using your handheld device? How about your smartphone or an old tablet that collects dust? Yep, with the right software, you can use your Android phone as a controller for your PC. Check our 3 picks that should allow you just that.
How can I use my Android phone as a gamepad?
1. HandyGamePad PRO
HandyGamePad Pro is an interesting solution that transforms your Android into a reasonably good wireless gamepad. This app, like the majority, functions only with a server application on the PC, so you have to download and install the suggested version.
First, you install both the Android app from Play Store and a server program for your PC. Once installed, you have to make sure that the Android and PC are on the same wireless connection and share the same IP address. The server works out the connection, Android app everything else.
It has editable layouts, themes, and advanced button mapping. Your PC will recognize it as an Xbox controller so compatibility shouldn’t be a problem in the majority of the games. It seems that the utilization of gyroscope is on the way for all diehard fans of racing games.
2. PC Remote
In comparison to HandyGamePad PRO, PC Remote is a free app that brings some additional features to the table. Besides allowing for Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity, users can transfer the PC screen and camera to the smartphone and vice versa.
The app offers file transfer as well, with 256-bit session coding on the remote network. Gaming-wise, it might lack some customizability that the previous app offers, but it should be good enough to play any game on your PC with your phone acting as a gamepad or a joystick.
3. LEA Extended Input Gamepad
The third app we recommend is probably the most immersive one with the most customization options. However, that comes at a price, as configuring the app can be a bit tedious. Especially without prior experience. There are 6 customizable user interfaces and fully customizable controls, not only button mapping but the look and colors, as well.
In addition, it can combine a regular gamepad/joystick with your phone to adjust the axis scaling or even add certain HUDs (Heads-up displays) or maps from games, and make them visible on your phone’s/tablet’s screen.
Get LEA Extended Input Gamepad for Android on Play Store. And, just like the previous entries, you’ll need an on-PC server. You can get it for your Windows PC on their website.
This was our list of suggested apps that should make it possible to use your Android phone as a controller for a PC. We hope you’ll find it helpful and use some of them to play your favorite games. Thank you for reading and make sure to visit our Facebook and Twitter pages for more quality content.
Editor’s note: This article was originally published in January 2017. We made sure to revamp it for freshness and accuracy.