Xbox One S

It's perhaps a peculiar thought, using a keyboard and mouse with your console. After all, it's designed to be used with a controller, right? In the case of the Xbox One, the growing convergence with Windows 10 makes it a more appealing concept. Games like Halo Wars 2 are just better with a keyboard and a mouse.

We know that official keyboard and mouse support is coming to the Xbox One at some point in the future, but if you can't wait, there is a way to get in on the action right now.

You can use a USB keyboard for limited functions that are already official, and you have been able to for some time. It's particularly useful for sending messages and participating in Twitch or Beam chat. But if you're remotely interested in keyboard and mouse support, it's probably for gaming reasons. For that, for now, you need some help.

Say hello to XIM 4

YouTuber Austin Evans demonstrating the XIM 4.

One method uses a product called the XIM 4, and it's a pretty ordinary-looking thing that acts as a go-between for the keyboard and mouse and translates the input signal to something the Xbox One can understand. It looks like a USB hub, and the set-up process is not exactly elegant, but it does work.


As you can see in the video above — where YouTuber Austin Evans demonstrates it — for all intents and purposes the XIM 4 makes it just like you're gaming on a PC. Latency is very low and judging by the legion of happy fans online, it's reliable, too.

But it's also not particularly cheap at around $150. If you just have to have keyboard and mouse support right now, the XIM 4 is the way to go. Otherwise, just wait it out with the rest of us and let Microsoft do the work. It's also now discontinued, so you might have trouble finding one. eBay currently seems to be the best bet.

XIM has a new product, the Apex, due to release in Q1 2018 which will replace the XIM 4. You can find out more on that at the XIM website.

See at eBay

Another option ...


An alternative to the XIM 4 that costs a little less is the CronusMax. The idea is the same, in that it's a USB device that acts as a go-between for a keyboard and mouse, translating it into a controller input for the console to understand.

The CronusMax also lets you use any controller on any console, or so its boasts. If for some mad reason you'd prefer to use a PlayStation 4 DualShock controller on your Xbox One, by hooking up through the CronusMax, you can.

At $80, it's a lot cheaper than the XIM 4 as well.

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Updated February 14, 2018: Added details on the XIM Apex, due for release in Q1 2018 and fresh links to buy the XIM 4.