I was almost at the point to buy a playstation or xbox controller to use with my tablet, since they seem to be supported out-of-the-box. But actually I still have an old USB controller lying around, which would be more than good enough for playing some games. Interestingly my gamepad did in fact work partly, but only the left analog stick and one or two buttons, and the rest did not. My hacker spirit told me that this must be fixable somehow.
So I started hacking around and added support for my old USB gamepad for my android tablet. In this post, I’ll show you how I did it and how you can to add support for any gamepad to your phone or tablet as well!
I just wanted to finish a draft blog post using my tablet, since after all, it’s a full blown computer. It has more than enough horsepower to run virtually any writing application. But right after I began to type in letter by letter, I realized that touch screens make you lazy. So lazy, that the blog post would have become much shorter than I wanted it to be. Additionally it would have included strange auto-completion artifacts and misplaced punctuation not resembling my usual writing style. Let’s explore the brave new world of touch screen computing, why touch screens suck and how they make us to internet zombies.
The Archos 101 has a crappy touch screen, as all the owners of this device already know. Most of the other problems could be fixed using a custom rom like urukdroid. But the touchscreen has been bugging me for the past year now: the touchscreen sometimes just acts weird (wild and random clicks, or almost no reaction), until it is “recalibrated”. No wonder, since it is a cheap USB touch screen “UNITEC USB Touch (Win7)”, probably made for windows 7 netbooks. Since the recalibration is hidden deep in the android settings, but needs regular access, I wrote a simple app as a “shortcut” to it. You can find the app download link at the end of the article.
I recently build a little USB-SNES-Gamepad for my Android Tablet, because I didn’t like using the on screen controls of the emulators. It just wasn’t fun playing the games of my childhood without the original controller in my hands. Luckily my Tablet has a standard USB port with host capability and supports thumbdrives, keyboards and mice out-of-the-box. So I figuered I could easily put the controllerboard of a usb keyboard inside the spare original SNES gamepad i had liying around.