Android 14’s new keyboard and touchpad options sound nice for productiveness

One in every of Google’s essential objectives with Android 14 is to construct upon the momentum of Android 12L and 13 by enhancing the expertise on big-screen gadgets like tablets and foldables. Whereas modifications like native app cloning for multi-account logins and a slick new again gesture will certainly be welcomed by everybody, individuals who use their bigger Android gadgets as workstations stand to profit from some modifications for exterior keyboards and touchpads within the newest OS model.


A hidden menu noticed by XDA’s Mishaal Rahman incorporates new settings for bodily keyboards related to Android gadgets both by USB, docking pins, or Bluetooth. The menu can solely be accessed by enabling a developer flag, then launching an alternate model of the Settings app referred to as Spa, so these options are undoubtedly of their early developmental levels and never assured to make the ultimate lower as soon as Android 14 will get a public launch.

Nonetheless, the “Bodily keyboard” menu below Settings -> Languages & enter now has an entry titled “Modifier keys.” Opening this menu reveals choices for customizing the Caps Lock, Ctrl, Meta, and Alt buttons in your keyboard. Every merchandise can solely be remapped to one of many different gadgets, however this must be useful for typing by muscle reminiscence in case your pill’s keyboard has a special modifier format than your laptop computer’s keyboard, for instance.

Rahman additionally noticed new keys in Android’s generic key format file, which tells the system what to do with specific buttons in your keyboard. Android 14 now helps a current apps button, toggle and adjustment buttons for keyboard backlights, mute keys, devoted buttons for zooming out and in, and focus keys. There’s additionally a brand new launcher flag that may be enabled to offer your keyboard the power to toggle full display screen home windows.

However Google didn’t cease there. Additionally hidden within the Spa settings app is a brand new menu discovered at Settings -> System -> Touchpad. Right here, you’ll be able to select whether or not you need your exterior touchpad to register button presses with a single faucet, invert the scroll conduct, or make the most of a digital right-click by tapping within the bottom-right nook.

There’s additionally a “Touchpad gestures” menu with a lot of new goodies. You’ll be able to swipe left or proper with three fingers to return, swipe up with three fingers to go residence, swipe up and maintain with three fingers to view current apps, swipe down with three fingers to view notifications, or swipe left or proper with 4 fingers to change between open apps.

Lastly, Android 14 can be including assist for non-QWERTY keyboard layouts — Apple Prolonged, AZERTY, Colemak, DVORAK, QWERTZ, Turkish-F, Turkish-Q, and Workman keyboards ought to all work natively now. And to assist set up all these new options, Google has break up up the “Languages & enter” menu within the developmental Spa settings into two entries: “Languages” and “Keyboards.”

With most of those options being hidden away behind a developer flag, there’s no assure that they’ll make it to the ultimate model. On the brilliant facet, the general public construct of Android 14 continues to be a methods off — we’re anticipating a launch timeline of six developer previews and betas earlier than the steady model — so there’s loads of time for Google to finalize their new keyboard and touchpad controls.

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