How to Connect a Mouse to Your iPad (or iPhone)

* This post is part of iPhone Life's Tip of the Day newsletter. . *

When iPadOS 13 came out, I was delighted to discover that I could use a mouse with an iPad, as long as the mouse used Bluetooth. When Apple released iOS 13.4 and iPadOS 13.4, it added even more support for using a trackpad or wireless mouse for the iPad, iPad Pro, or even an iPhone, if it's the correct model. Here's how to connect your iPad mouse or trackpad to your tablet.

Related: How to Switch between Bluetooth Devices in the iPhone & iPad Control Center

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If you have one of the iPad models below and your operating system is updated to iPadOS 13.4 or later, you'll be able to connect a mouse to your iPad. Once you know how to connect a mouse to your iPad, check out our guide on how to use a Bluetooth mouse with an iPad

iPad Models 

  • iPad Pro (all models)
  • iPad Air 2 & later
  • iPad 5th generation & later
  • iPad mini 4 & later

How to Connect a Mouse to an iPad

  1. Turn on your Bluetooth mouse or Bluetooth trackpad and place it near your iPad or iPhone.
  2. Make sure your Bluetooth accessory is in discovery or pairing mode
  3. Open the Settings app.

    ipad settings
     
  4. Tap Bluetooth and make sure Bluetooth is toggled on.

    ipad bluetooth settings
     
  5. Look in the Other Devices section for the iPad mouse you want and click its name; it will pair.

    pair a bluetooth trackpad to ipad


​Some iPad Bluetooth accessories may require a few extra steps; instructions will appear on screen if this is the case. If you're pairing an Apple Magic Trackpad or Magic Mouse, you may need to enter a code at this point.

Wireless Mouse for iPad Won't Pair?

The iPad mouse Bluetooth pairing feature is still a little buggy. For example, I easily paired both a Bluetooth trackpad and wireless mouse for iPad one week, then tried the next week and was unable to! Hopefully, this issue will be fixed in the next version of iPadOS, but until then, there is a workaround. 

  1. Open the Settings app, then tap Accessibility
  2. Tap Switch Control, then Switches.
  3. Don't toggle Switch Control on, instead tap Bluetooth Devices
  4. Your Bluetooth iPad mouse or trackpad should appear in the list of Bluetooth Devices. As before, tap the lower case i to pair your accessory. 

Happy clicking!

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Cullen Thomas's picture

Cullen Thomas is a Writer and Producer at iPhone Life, creating tips and guides to help users unlock the full potential of their iOS and iPhone. In addition to writing countless tip-of-the-day articles and many detailed guides, Cullen has spent nine years as an instructor in media and communications at Maharishi University, lecturing on technical and artistic subjects ranging from camera and audio hardware to story-plotting to how to manage a film crew. Cullen answers questions daily about iPhones and iOS as part of the Ask an Editor insider service, and designs curriculum for iPhone Life’s online classes. As a frequent contributor to iPhone Life magazine and occasional guest on the iPhone Life podcast, Cullen likes to talk about security and privacy news, tech, gadgets, and apps, even if nobody asked.

Cullen holds a master’s degree in Cinematic Arts from the David Lynch School of Cinematic Arts. Cullen also holds two Bachelor’s degrees from Maharishi University, one in literature with an emphasis in writing and the other in Communications and Media. Cullen’s short fiction has been featured in anthologies from Amphibian Press and TANSTAAFL, and Cullen co-owns a game design company, Thoughtspike games, which builds thought-provoking puzzle games. Cullen is a sci-fi author, a coffee connoisseur, and an iPhone expert.