Need to control Android from your PC? You could need to do this for a variety of reasons, such as troubleshooting a friend’s smartphone or tablet. Or, you might need to access an Android-based device to retrieve files that were left on it. Whatever you need to access an Android device from your PC for, it’s quite easy to do and won’t cost you any money. We’ll do this through something called remote access, which is a process that happens all the time in the IT world, so there are plenty of solutions available for it. Here’s how you can start controlling your Android device from your PC.
A program that has been around for a long time that offers a way to remotely access all sorts of devices is called TeamViewer. It’s a favorite in the IT world, is free to download, and will cost you nothing to access, really, any device!
First, you need to have TeamViewer downloaded on both the Android device and your PC. You can get it for your PC here, and for your Android device here. It should work with any Android device — tablet or smartphone — and will even work with Chromebooks that now support Android apps. Get the program downloaded on both devices.
Once you have TeamViewer downloaded, connecting to the Android device from your PC is as easy as can be. The person on the Android side will need to open TeamViewer and pass the PIN code they get to you. You take that PIN code, enter it in on TeamViewer for your PC, and it will start the process of connecting up to the Android device.
TeamViewer comes with tons of functions for troubleshooting an Android device — you can remotely uninstall apps, stop processes, chat with the person on the other end, and more.
The downside to TeamViewer is that they won’t let you use it commercially for free, which is totally understandable; however, inside TeamViewer is an algorithm that tries to detect if it is being used in that way. That said, the algorithm can get things wrong sometimes and terminate your connection, possibly not even allowing you to watch TeamViewer anymore.
With that in mind, you might want to try another way to remotely access an Android device. LogMeIn is another popular option for that, offering a program called Join.Me for mobile devices. Primarily, its an audio or video conferencing application, which means it’s a little more lightweight. It has a screen sharing function, though. This allows you to join a session with another user. The other user will allow you to see their screen, and then you can provide them with troubleshooting instructions. Or, if you’re not troubleshooting specifically, you can show them different instructions for whatever. You can download Join.Me for Android here.
Rescue + Mobile
One last way we’ll highlight is another solution by LogMeIn, called Rescue + Mobile. To use this support application on Android, the person on a PC will need to be using the LogMeIn Rescue program to access your device. It works under the same principle as TeamViewer — the person on Android gets a Support PIN, the Android user gives the PIN to the technician, and then the tech is able to connect up to your Android phone from the PC. Keep in mind that you don’t have to be a tech to use LogMeIn Rescue on the PC — it can be anyone with the software.
There’s an absolute ton that you can do with this application, such as being able to chat with the built-in chat function, transfer files, view system diagnostic information, push and pull WiFi configurations, and so much more. It’s worth noting that Rescue + Mobile will only work on a select handful of Android devices (usually devices powerful enough to handle the demands of remote access), i.e. many of the latest flagships from Samsung, LG, HTC, Motorola/Lenovo, Huawei, and many others. Android users can go to the Rescue + Mobile Google Play Store page to see if their device is eligible for download.
It’s worth noting that LogMeIn Rescue does cost money. You can sign-up for a free trial and do most of the functions that the paid subscription would offer, but you’ll either need to sign-up for another trial or pay for the subscription after your trial ends.
As you can see, there are a lot of great ways for accessing Android devices from your PC. The amount of software available for remote access out there is endless, and even goes beyond what we highlighted here. Do you have a favorite piece of remote access software that you use regularly? Let us know in the comments section below!