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Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
54,676
16,850


Controlly, a new app available in the Mac App Store, is designed to turn a gaming controller into a full-featured remote control that can be used with a Mac.

controlly-app.jpg

With the app installed and a gaming controller connected, the different keys on the controller can be mapped to various functions such as displaying the desktop, adjusting screen brightness, tweaking volume, controlling media playback, accessing Launch Pad, launching Mission Control, and more.

There's even an option to use the controller in lieu of a mouse with controls for moving the mouse pointer, clicking, right clicking, and scrolling. You can essentially set any function on the Mac to be performed with a click of a controller button, which is handy if you want an alternate input method. There's also an option to create custom shortcuts that can be launched with a controller.

Note that to use the app, you must enable the Accessibility feature that allows apps to control your computer. This is available in System Preferences, and the app setup will walk you through it. Without the control option enabled, Controlly does not work.

controlly-key-mapping-options.jpg

Most wireless controllers should be able to work with Controlly after being paired via Bluetooth to a Mac. We tested with the PlayStation 4 DualShock controller and the app worked flawlessly, with the controller able to perform all of the appropriate mapped actions.


Controlly can be downloaded for free and used for seven days to test it out, but after that, there's a one-time $3.99 in-app purchase to unlock full functionality. [Direct Link]

Article Link: 'Controlly' App Turns a Game Controller Into a Remote Control for Macs
 

Wowfunhappy

macrumors 65816
Mar 12, 2019
1,189
1,408
Controlly can be downloaded for free and used for seven days to test it out, but after that, there's a one-time $3.99 in-app purchase to unlock full functionality.

Wait a second! This might be old news, but I just realized... I guess free trials are allowed on the Mac App Store now? I remember that being a big deal when the Mac App Store first launched.
 
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Sharewaredemon

Contributor
May 31, 2004
1,992
204
Cape Breton Island
Perhaps others see value in things you don’t...? Using a controller might be a decent ergonomic choice for people with large hands, or perhaps folks with disabilities or dexterity issues.

No harm in getting more out of something.
Yep, or simply being able to do a few things with your computer using the controller that's already in your hands after you finish playing a game, when you might not be physically close to your computer, or it's not somewhere ergonomic for the trackpad and keyboard.
 

JUiCEJamie

macrumors 6502a
Mar 22, 2011
795
166
Hmmm.... absolute credit to the developer for backwards engineering the possibility to do this.
But why? - and yes, I can change each button to whatever I like - but why is a user going to remember all of these controls?

Just because you can, doesn't mean you should. (imo)
 

icanhazmac

macrumors 6502a
Apr 11, 2018
978
2,991
Interesting.... can the game controller focus on 1 window while the keyboard / mouse has focus on another?

Example: game controller used to scroll a web page while the mouse and keyboard are used to type in a word doc. Akin to how a mouse wheel can scroll different web pages without clicking on that specific browser window.
 

decisions

macrumors regular
Sep 30, 2019
211
573
This is awesome. Will become more and more useful as gaming rises within the Mac ecosystem. And yes, that is coming as Apple Silicon chips become the norm.
 
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aleni

macrumors 68030
Jun 2, 2006
2,501
799
Great! Now for anyone who hates touchbar, now you can attach a dualshock controller on the laptop for tactile feedback to increase/decrease brightness/volume. 🤪
 
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Scoob Redux

macrumors regular
Sep 25, 2020
240
382
NO. We do not need apps to turn every device into every other device.
agreed.

Perhaps others see value in things you don’t...? Using a controller might be a decent ergonomic choice for people with large hands, or perhaps folks with disabilities or dexterity issues.

No harm in getting more out of something.

Yep, or simply being able to do a few things with your computer using the controller that's already in your hands after you finish playing a game, when you might not be physically close to your computer, or it's not somewhere ergonomic for the trackpad and keyboard.

I love these posts which sound like someone is holding a gun to your head and forcing you to use/purchase it :rolleyes:

When the OP said we don't need it, I'm sure he meant the majority of us don't need it. If someone has a use for this, great. Perhaps the developer could also implement a way to use the controller as a full keyboard. After all, there are way fewer keys on a keyboard than there are moves in Mortal Kombat. So, maybe <back><down><down><square> coud be the letter "m" (in addition to a Scorpion fatality).
 

nathan_reilly

macrumors regular
Apr 2, 2016
146
491
NO. We do not need apps to turn every device into every other device.
I think this is so misguided. You might not need it but someone else could really benefit from it. And does it hurt you that it exists now? Or are you like imagining this developer could have solved some important (to you) problem instead of this unimportant (to you) problem? My god.
 

cecil444

macrumors regular
Mar 9, 2008
142
189
NY


Controlly, a new app available in the Mac App Store, is designed to turn a gaming controller into a full-featured remote control that can be used with a Mac.

controlly-app.jpg

With the app installed and a gaming controller connected, the different keys on the controller can be mapped to various functions such as displaying the desktop, adjusting screen brightness, tweaking volume, controlling media playback, accessing Launch Pad, launching Mission Control, and more.

There's even an option to use the controller in lieu of a mouse with controls for moving the mouse pointer, clicking, right clicking, and scrolling. You can essentially set any function on the Mac to be performed with a click of a controller button, which is handy if you want an alternate input method. There's also an option to create custom shortcuts that can be launched with a controller.

Note that to use the app, you must enable the Accessibility feature that allows apps to control your computer. This is available in System Preferences, and the app setup will walk you through it. Without the control option enabled, Controlly does not work.

controlly-key-mapping-options.jpg

Most wireless controllers should be able to work with Controlly after being paired via Bluetooth to a Mac. We tested with the PlayStation 4 DualShock controller and the app worked flawlessly, with the controller able to perform all of the appropriate mapped actions.


Controlly can be downloaded for free and used for seven days to test it out, but after that, there's a one-time $3.99 in-app purchase to unlock full functionality. [Direct Link]

Article Link: 'Controlly' App Turns a Game Controller Into a Remote Control for Macs
Beyond the novelty of doing so...what exactly is the usefulness of this? Do they present any use cases for this functionality.
 
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mrgraff

macrumors 65816
Apr 18, 2010
1,024
725
Albuquerque
Yep, or simply being able to do a few things with your computer using the controller that's already in your hands after you finish playing a game, when you might not be physically close to your computer, or it's not somewhere ergonomic for the trackpad and keyboard.
Or if a Mac Mini is part of your home theater setup, and you happen to have a PS4 controller amongst your other remotes. I think this is great.
 

Bnazzaro

macrumors newbie
Nov 15, 2017
8
24
I envision a world where you map this controller for photoshop. Then, others start doing it. It's catching on. Then, there's a competing online community where there are battles for like cloning out light posts, masking out hair/trees, pen tool work, and the list goes on. Technology is here, it's now, IT'S WHAT STEVE WOULD HAVE WANTED.
 

cecil444

macrumors regular
Mar 9, 2008
142
189
NY
The most obvious one that comes to my mind is you have a Mac Mini in your living room and want to control it from your couch.
But for what purpose? I can’t for the life of me imagine a practical use for it. Okay so say you use it to launch an app or a file....then what? You have to ditch the controller for a mouse/keyboard. Just seems a pointless novelty to me. Am I missing something? Feel free to point out a reasonable use case. I’m just not seeing one.
 
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