Developer: RPA Tech, INC
Price: $0.99 Download on the App Store
I haven’t been as enthused about an app as I am with Air Mouse Pro, from R.P.A. Tech, in a long time. Air Mouse Pro transforms your iPhone or iPod touch into a wireless air mouse, trackpad and remote control for iTunes and other apps.
You can use your iPhone or iPod touch just as you would any mouse, with left and right button clicks and anything else you ought to be able to do.
Air Mouse Pro, as it name suggests, is also an air mouse. Thanks to your device’s accelerometer, you can move the cursor with a wave of the hand in the air like you just don’t care.
Air Mouse Pro also functions as a trackpad, again, enabling you to control the mouse with finger swipes. Not long ago, I reviewed Snatch, a wireless trackpad, which I thought was pretty cool. Air Mouse Pro costs the same ($5.99) and is far more capable.
Air Mouse Pro recognizes the apps running on your desktop. When you’re running iTunes, tap the music icon and you’ll be able to control volume, skip through tunes, scroll and so on. If you have a browser open, tap the globe icon and you can search, go home, open favorites and more. Air Mouse Pro also has a keyboard and function keys as well.
When you tap icons to move left right and left, or page up and down, access iTunes and other functions, a label pops up momentarily to let you know what’s happening. The sound effects for mouse clicks sound even better than the real thing.
Unfortunately, although Air Mouse Pro is long on features, it’s short on how to use the app. It has no help functionality to speak of. Admittedly, it’s not hard to figure out — the interface is streamlined and the icons are evident as to their functions.
However, unless they read the App Store description closely, some downloaders of Air Mouse Pro may not understand they also need to download a server for their desktop (free Mac and PC versions are available). I’ve seen many apps with desktop remote control features, so I knew that was the thing to do after downloading the app from the App Store.
Once I installed the server, I launched the app and it immediately synched and worked. No configuration or twiddling required. It just popped.
All in all, Air Mouse Pro is an impressive app. It works right out the box and features considerable functionality all within easy reach. It offers excellent bang for the buck too.
I encountered a couple of minor problems. While playing music, iTunes stopped and I wasn’t able to restart the music using my handheld. A mouse click (with my real mouse) got me back on track. Another time, I crashed Firefox, but that could have been caused by my shennigans. In any case, neither was a deal breaker.