Pair and control an iPad with a mouse or trackpad

From iPadOS 13.4 it is possible: operate your iPad with a mouse or a trackpad. In this tip, we explain step by step how to set this up.

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Control an iPad mouse or trackpad

Apple is making big strides with the iPad by adding full support for bluetooth mice and trackpads. From now on you can operate the tablet with a cursor that appears on the screen, a bit like you are used to from a laptop or computer. In this tip, we explain in four steps how it works, what you can do with it and what you should pay attention to.

1. Before you start: Install iPadOS 13.4 or later

Always check whether your iPad is running on the latest version of iPadOS. As long as your tablet has iPadOS 13.4 or newer installed, you can pair a mouse or trackpad.

In addition to the iPad itself, you also need a bluetooth mouse or trackpad, a Magic Mouse and Magic Trackpad from Apple, for example, but accessories from other brands also work. In addition, Apple and Logitech, among others, are releasing new iPad covers with a built-in keyboard and trackpad.

2. Pair a mouse or trackpad with your iPad

Do you have all the necessary devices at hand? Then it is now time to pair your iPad with a Bluetooth mouse or trackpad. Follow the steps below to set up your iPad mouse or trackpad.

  1. Make sure your mouse or trackpad is switched on and bluetooth is on on your iPad;
  2. Open the Settings app on your iPad;
  3. Tap on ‘Bluetooth’;
  4. Tap the mouse or trackpad that appears in this window.

If successful, a cursor will now appear on your iPad screen when you use the mouse or trackpad. Does the device not appear in the Bluetooth device list? Then check whether the mouse or trackpad is not already paired with another device. For example, we had to disconnect our Magic Mouse from the MacBook to get it working on the iPad.

iPad Mouse

3. Adjust the cursor settings

Now that your mouse or trackpad is paired, you can further adjust a number of settings. This works as follows.

  1. Open the Settings app on your iPad;
  2. Tap on ‘General’;
  3. Choose ‘Trackpad’ or Trackpad & Mouse ‘depending on the paired device;
  4. Use the slider to speed up or slow down the speed at which the cursor moves.

From this screen you can also adjust the scrolling direction and turn it on or off or perform a secondary action when you tap the trackpad with two fingers.

4. You can do all this with the iPad mouse and trackpad

Now that the iPad has full support for mice and trackpads, you can operate the tablet almost completely in this way. Good to keep in mind here is the way you normally controlled the iPad with your finger: almost all of this now also works with the cursor.

For example, move to the bottom of your screen to call up the dock and switch apps, or click the line at the bottom of the screen to go back to your home screen. You open the Control Panel by clicking on the battery and Wi-Fi icon at the top right of the screen.

Yet the cursor works slightly differently than you are used to from a computer. For example, the circle only appears when you actually move it and the cursor changes shape when you hover over a button. That makes it easier to select the correct button.

Also read: Magic Keyboard: 7 Things You Should Know About the Trackpad iPad Keyboard

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