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Using the 8BitDo Micro in Keyboard Mode: Enhancing Workflow Efficiency

In search of ways to optimize my work-from-home setup, I explore various devices that can streamline my workflow. My latest discovery is the 8BitDo Micro, a compact controller that piqued my interest due to its multitasking capabilities. With dimensions of 2.8 x 1.6 x 0.55 inches and a weight of 24.8 grams, this tiny controller packs a punch.

Designed primarily for 2D games, the 8BitDo Micro features all the buttons found on the best Nintendo Switch controllers, making it suitable for platformers, puzzles, and old-school RPGs. While it supports the Nintendo Switch, Android devices, Raspberry Pi, and more, it does not have built-in XInput support for Windows gaming.

The 8BitDo Micro, which follows the successful 8BitDo Zero and Zero 2, offers more buttons and an enhanced user experience. With the addition of L2 and R2 bumpers and a dedicated home button, navigating the Nintendo Switch is made easier.

However, my interest lies in utilizing all 16 buttons of the 8BitDo Micro to enhance my productivity on a PC. This controller surpasses the functionality of my current trackball mouse, especially with the toggle switch that eliminates the need to press specific buttons every time I want to use it.

One of the notable features of the 8BitDo Micro is its mode selection switch, allowing for different usage scenarios. The S mode is for the Nintendo Switch, the D mode utilizes DirectInput for Android, and the K mode functions as a keyboard. Out of the box, the buttons correspond to specific keys on a keyboard, providing immediate productivity potential.

To fully customize the mapping of the 8BitDo Micro's buttons, I utilized the Ultimate Software provided by 8BitDo. Although the software is available for PC, I used the Android version on my tablet to optimize the controller for my workflow. One small challenge was the orientation of the D-pad due to the wrist strap attachment, but I resolved this by adjusting the button positions.

Assigning each of the 16 buttons to specific functions required careful consideration. I ultimately mapped the left and right buttons to switch between multiple desktops on Windows, a frequent action in my workflow. Additionally, I assigned the D-pad to scroll vertically and horizontally. By aligning the controller for one-handed operation, I significantly reduced reliance on traditional keyboard inputs, enhancing my overall efficiency.

The 8BitDo Micro, when utilized in keyboard mode, proves to be a versatile tool for power users seeking to optimize their workflow. Through customization and mapping of its buttons, this compact controller offers a unique solution to streamline tasks on a PC or gaming console.

Sources:
– 8BitDo Micro Controller Manual [Digital document] – 8BitDo Ultimate Software Guide [Digital document]