The idea of connecting a keyboard and mouse to Xbox One may seem bizarre to some, but it actually makes a lot of sense. Inputting text would be a lot easier, as would navigating the UI and menus. Despite the fact that the Xbox One is essentially a Windows machine, keyboard and mouse support has been slow-going. That being said, it is available via a few different methods.
Connecting a Keyboard and Mouse
Both wireless and wired USB devices are compatible with the Xbox One. Xbox One owners can start using a USB keyboard and mouse by simply plugging them into a free USB port on the console. The Xbox One will automatically recognize the devices and can be used straightaway. Unfortunately, using third-party Bluetooth keyboards and mice is not possible with the Xbox One.
A USB keyboard (wired or wireless) can be used to enter text and navigate various menus. The table below outlines the keyboard inputs and their corresponding controller functions.
|Function||Controller input||Keyboard key|
|Move to next element||N/A||Tab|
|Move to previous element||N/A||Shift+Tab|
|Open the guide||Xbox button||Windows button|
|Open menu||Menu button||Win+M|
|Change view||View button||Win+V|
|Up||Left stick up , D-pad up||Up arrow|
|Down||Left stick down, D-pad down||Down arrow|
|Left||Left stick left, D-pad left||Left arrow|
|Right||Left stick right, D-pad right||Right arrow|
You can adjust the settings for the mouse by going to your profile and selecting “Settings -> Devices & connections -> Mouse.” If you don’t see this option, reboot the console. This allows the console to install and recognize the mouse.
Sometimes the console doesn’t recognize your mouse or keyboard. Rebooting often solves this problem. However, it could also be that your keyboard and mouse simply aren’t compatible.
In some games, your mouse may not work properly, if at all – even if the game is supposed to support it. In this case, open your Accessibility settings and switch the “Lock input method as mouse” to On. This is a common fix for Fortnite.
Limitations of Using a Keyboard and Mouse
While Microsoft seems more receptive to letting Xbox One owners use a keyboard and mouse, compatibility really depends on the developer. Text input can be achieved via the keyboard in most games and apps; however, the same cannot be said about the mouse.
Curiously, some apps that lend themselves to mouse navigation have the feature disabled, like the Edge web browser. This forces owners to use the Xbox One controller to control the on-screen pointer, which is awkward and cumbersome. With the new Chromium-based Edge web browser, this problem is fixed. As of March 2021, most users should have the new Edge browser, which solves this annoying issue. If you don’t have it yet, it should be coming soon.
On apps that do have mouse support, users can configure their mouse by navigating to “Settings -> Kinect and devices.” Here, users can change the mouse pointer speed and swap the primary and secondary buttons.
Razer, the company known primarily for PC gaming peripherals, partnered with Microsoft to create a wireless mouse and keyboard setup for the Xbox One, called the Turret. The keyboard and mouse combo features a dedicated Xbox key that allows users to access the Xbox One dashboard. In addition, the Razer Turret features Xbox dynamic lighting and a mousepad that slides out from underneath the keyboard.
The Razer Turret is an impressive device and the first truly wireless keyboard and mouse designed specifically for gaming on the Xbox One. Unfortunately, the Razer Turret will set you back quite a bit. At the time of writing, the unit is retailing for $250. You can use other wireless keyboards, especially wireless gaming keyboards, though they may not work as well as the Razer Turret.
Games that Support Keyboard and Mouse
While Sony’s Playstation 4 also supports a keyboard and mouse, the number of games that officially support them is bare bones. The Xbox One, on the other hand, has a much healthier list of games that officially support keyboard and mouse controls.
Some of the major games on the list include:
- Ark: Survival Evolved
- Bomber Crew
- Gears of War 5
- Halo: The Master Chief Collection
- Sea of Thieves
- The Sims 4
- Strange Brigade
- Surviving Mars
- War Thunder
- Warhammer: Vermintide 2
Microsoft is pledging that this list will continue to grow, so gamers can expect more titles in the future. In addition, expect to see keyboard and mouse support for more Triple A titles. You can check a regularly updated list to see what’s being added. At the time of writing, over 50 games are listed.
Play Any Game with a Keyboard and Mouse
As was mentioned before, keyboard and mouse support is only available if the developer allows it – at least officially. Fortunately, there are ways to get around this. Third-party products like the XIM Apex Controller Adapter allow you to use a keyboard and mouse with any game by essentially tricking the Xbox One into thinking it is a controller. However, the XIM Apex comes with a steep price tag at $125.
It’s a good idea to check whether your keyboard and mouse are supported. Plus, you’ll also need the latest XIM Apex firmware for best results.
There are some cheaper options available; however, the XIM Apex consistently gets the best consumer reviews. While not as popular, you can also try IOGEAR’s KeyMander keyboard and mouse adapter. It’s compatible with Xbox One, Xbox 360, PS3, and PS4. It’s a little cheaper at just $99.99.
CronusMax is another adapter option, but it’s more difficult to set up. You’ll need your PC close to your console for everything to work correctly. It’s priced similarly to the XIM Apex at $125.
Console Tuner Titan One works similarly to the CronusMax but offers more flexibility and is much easier to set up. It comes with over 50 mods to make things work the way you want. It’s the cheapest option available at $69.95.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Does this work with any keyboard/mouse?
No. Most wired keyboards and mice should work with your Xbox One. However, some wireless keyboards might not work correctly, as the Xbox One sometimes drops the sync between the keyboard/mouse and console.
2. Does this work on all Xbox One models?
Yes. You should be able to connect the same types of keyboards and mice to all Xbox One models as long as you have an available USB port.
3. Will all games support keyboard/mouse?
No. There is still limited support among Xbox One games, as they simply weren’t designed with keyboard/mouse control in mind. Even on games where they are supported, you may still encounter glitches or only one of the two accessories working correctly.
4. Can I use Bluetooth?
No. The Xbox One does not include Bluetooth support. In fact, even the Xbox 360 only supports Bluetooth for the controllers themselves.
Even when using these methods, it’s not guaranteed that every game will work flawlessly with a keyboard and mouse. You may still encounter glitches or no support at all. Also, ensure the keyboard and mouse you want to use are compatible with the third-party adapter.
Do you also happen to own a PS4? If so, then here’s how to connect a keyboard and mouse to that. Alternatively, for Android owners, here’s how to connect any Xbox One controller to an Android phone.