We all love gadgets, right? Well, you must do because you’re here reading a review on a website dedicated to gadgets – the telephonic kind that have a bugdroid running around inside them. Our smartphones today have so many uses that it’s getting a little ridiculous when we think about it. Partly because, most of these uses don’t help us in a direct manner after all, there’s only so long you can lie about watching tutorials on YouTube before anyone finds out it’s just cat videos. WiFi mouse from Necta Company however will turn your smartphone into a trackpad, making that expensive phone do double-duty to earn its keep. Read more to see what all the fuss is about.
Description: The WiFi Mouse provides you with an app to turn your smartphone into a mouse. Oh sure, there’s loads of apps out there that do that but, how many of them support multitouch gestures? Not a lot of them and I’m sure few do it for both Android and Mac OS X like this offering from Necta does. The app provides simple trackpad tracking for pinch-to-zoom as well as some specific gestures for Mac OS X. This isn’t everything though because the app also allows you to input text through the Android keyboard – making this a perfect companion for a Media PC.
How It Works: For an app this advanced it’s fairly easy to set up, all you’ve got to do is install the app from the Play Store and then install the Server software which you’ll find here. I can’t speak for Mac Users but the installation on Windows was pain-free and more importantly – safe and unobtrusive.
After that all you have to do is open up the app on your phone and then either click auto-connect and wait for the magic to happen. I manually entered the IP address because I really don’t trust Windows and networking but in testing both worked fine.
Once in you’re greeted with the mouse screen, where you’ll see the left and right buttons at the bottom of the screen as well as a virtual scroll-wheel where you’d expect. All three buttons work well as do gestures which are only available in the pro version.
In the top right corner of the app you’ll see a keyboard button which will bring the keyboard, the great thing here is that it’ll bring up any keyboard app you’re using so, if you’re a Swiftkey user like me, you get Swiftkey – very nice indeed.
Opinion: I’m not a massive fan of trackpads in fact, I really hate trackpads. But, that’s because I’m a gaming mouse type of guy and whilst I might only play Minecraft and some city-building games I need a good mouse. Add that to the fact I don’t have a laptop and you can see where I’m coming from. What I love however are universal remotes and let me tell you, this is the best universal remote you will ever try on your media pc. I have an old office machine behind our TV and sometimes, digging out the keyboard and mouse to update something or organise files is a massive pain. With this I have a keyboard, multi-touch mouse and voice input all in one – yeah, it’s pretty awesome.
- Speed (4/5) – Setting up the app is quick and easy, the Android app is fast and snappy. There is a little lag on input but, I’m blaming WiFi for that.
- Features (5/5) – What can I say? This offers more than the everyday wireless mouse app and does it better – gestures are fast becoming the norm on computers so to see it here is brilliant!
- Theme (4/5) – With a simple set-up theme and simple, clean trackpad layout the app is smart, indeed.
- Overall (5/5) – A very nifty app that serves a real purpose for presentations and media PCs alike, a must have for those who are on the couch away from the keyboard.
- Fast set-up and support for Mac OS X are big boons – that re-purposed Mac Mini just became easier to access.
- Gestures are brilliant to see and make touch operation a real joy, especially for images.
- Two-fingered scrolling is, for some, easier than a scroll wheel.
- No Linux support is annoying for an Ubuntu user like myself but, I understand the difficulties in that.
Conclusion: If you haven’t tried one of these types of apps for a while or, at all before then you really need to give this app a go. In parts because it’s a great feat of development but mostly because it’s just plain awesome. To control a PC off in the distance or just use touch for a change through your smartphone is brilliant. Its execution is good as well, a solid application that serves it’s purpose almost flawlessly. These apps were all the rage some years ago and whilst you could say this app is trying to revive a trend I’d disagree because the app changes the rules and gives you an experience that touchpad manufacturers have struggled to deliver in laptops for years – through your smartphone. The fact of the matter is that this is a great app and one that you must install if you rely on a media PC. If you haven’t done so already go and check out the app in the Play Store.