The BTC Mouse and Trackpad is a paid jailbreak utility that allows you to pair your iOS device with your bluetooth mouse, trackpad and keyboard. That’s right, I did just say mouse and keyboard. With this product, your iOS device will have a cursor, just like on your computer (of course this is why it is a jailbreak tweak, Apple would never approve of this). The BTC Mouse and Trackpad tweak is available on the Cydia store for $4.99. Let’s see if it’s right for you.
There is not much to say about the form of this product. This product is an all software product. The settings tab in the Settings app of your iOS device for the BTC Mouse and Trackpad is easy to use and navigate. The cursor used in the tweak looks like a Mac cursor, rather than a Windows cursor. Of course, since iOS products are Apple products and Macs are Apple products, that makes sense. However, I do appreciate them deciding to use a Mac cursor. This comes in handy for something later on down the road. As for the form of the hardware, since it can run any bluetooth keyboard, mouse/trackpad, the hardware is only as good as what you own. Let’s take a look at the functionality of this tweak, which has a bit more to talk about then the form of he product.
The ability to add a cursor on an iPad screen has been an interesting thought of mine that I had before I knew that the product existed on the market. After having tried it, I am not sure if I see the functionality in using it. First off, if you want to seriously use a trackpad and keyboard with an iPad, those are additional things you will need to carry around. Some already carry around a keyboard, which I think is bulky enough to carry around, but a trackpad/mouse adds on to that. In addition, if you wanted to use it a lot like that, you would need to probably buy an additional trackpad/mouse and keyboard, because the ones you have for your computer currently are either USB driven or you want dedicated to the computer and it would be a pain disconnecting the devices from your computer, connecting them to your iOS device then disconnecting them from the iOS device and then connect them again to the computer, every time you want to switch from a computer and back. Therefore, if you wanted to avoid this big burden, you would need to spend extra money to buy a keyboard and mouse/trackpad. I have never been a fan of using a bluetooth keyboard on an iPad because of the lack of portability. Even keyboard cases are not good because of the thickness they require. Lack of portability is certainly a practicality issue. In addition, a cursor on iOS works similar to a cursor on Windows 8, it doesn’t work. They just don’t go together, iOS is made for fingers not a mouse, using this tweak is a verification of that. Another issue I have is that the cursor does seem to lag a bit. On top of that, the mouse only provides basic functions. It can not rotate objects, it can not move objects, it can not act like a cursor on the computer in most ways. It just doesn’t make it worth it for me.
However, the product isn’t all bad either. If you want to make a cheap man’s portable computer, this is definitely a way to do it. It is portable enough, nothing like a laptop and it requires more real estate in your backpack but it is doable. A theme that I have reviewed for the iPad, the OS X Pad theme, is a perfect companion for this device as the cursor the tweak provides is a Mac cursor. In addition, there are bluetooth cases that make the iPad look like a MacBook, which even further the Mac look. However, even then, it still isn’t the same as a computer. The iPad isn’t made to have a cursor, it’s OS just doesn’t work well with a cursor. The product itself isn’t necessarily flawed, the settings that comes with it is easy to work with and you have the option of using any bluetooth device you choose. The concept, however, is flawed and that’s because the cursor is not meant to be on the iPad.
-Easy to use settings
-Poor man’s laptop (with limited functionality), works well with some jailbreak themes
-Transport of too many things makes the concept lack portability
-Concept of a cursor just doesn’t work on an iPad
-Cursor lags and only provides minor functions
-Lack of functionality in the whole experience
Ways to Improve
Honestly, I believe this product should be scraped. The product just doesn’t work. It’s not that the product wasn’t executed well, it’s just the idea wasn’t. The idea of putting a cursor on an iPad is as appealing as putting a cursor on Windows 8, it isn’t. The only way to improve from here for the company is to go into other jailbreak utilities.
This product is not entirely a failure in my eyes. They did the best they could with it and I applaud their efforts. However, I think the company should consider moving on to a different idea. I give this product 2 and a half stars for a good try on a bad idea.
Thanks for reading,