This tutorial will take you step by step through the process of setting up your PC and Android phone (or tablet) so that you can control your PC using your Android device – from anywhere.
We might as well get this out of the way right up front – the software used in this tutorial is not free. It (Splashtop Desktop HD) costs $8.99. I have installed and tested 7 different ‘remote control’ Android Apps, and this one is by far the best. It’s much faster, more intuitive, and less prone to crashing than all of its peers. It works wonderfully on my Droid X (Android phone) and my Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 (Android tablet).
If you still want to continue, head over to the Google Play Store and download Splashtop to your Android device (or search the Play Store for “Splashtop HD” directly from your device). Once the installation has completed, hold off on opening it.
- On your Windows PC, visit the Splashtop Streamer download page and download Splashtop Streamer. This is the software that will run on your PC, allowing your Android phone/tablet to connect to it. Run the installation file once the download has completed.
- If you don’t want to send anonymous reporting to Splashtop (it helps improve the product if you do) – remove the check mark from the box. Otherwise, click the Accept button.
- Click the Go button to continue.
- Now you’ll be prompted to enter a Security Code. This is specific to Splashtop, shouldn’t be easy to guess, and must be 8 characters long – containing at least one number and one letter. Once you’ve entered the password in both boxes, click Next.
- You’re almost done setting up Streamer. Click the Finish button.
- The program will now run, and display itself on your screen. Select the NETWORK tab from the top of the Streamer window.
In order for you to connect to your Windows PC from outside of your own home network, Splashtop uses Google to allow your PC and Android device to ‘locate’ each other. It’s not the only way to allow Android to connect to your PC outside of your home network, but it’s certainly the easiest. Enter your Gmail/Google credentials in the spaces provided, and click the Sign in button.
- Make sure that Streamer displays a message ensuring that you’re now signed in to Google. As indicated in the screenshot below, the message should be displayed directly to the ‘right’ of the Sign out button.
- Now for the fun part. Grab your Android device and open Splashtop HD.
- Tap Go.
- Enter the Security Code you created back in step #4, and tap Continue.
- Tap Finish.
- Review the End User License Agreement, and then tap Agree.
- Now you’ll be presented with the main Splashtop HD ‘connection’ screen.
- Tap the Options icon in the upper-right corner of the screen (as pictured in the screenshot below) and then select Settings from the menu.
- From the Settings window, tap Internet discovery.
- Enter the exact same Gmail/Google credentials that you did back in step #6 when you were setting up the Streamer program in Windows. Tap Sign in.
- If your Windows PC doesn’t show up on the connection screen immediately, tap the Refresh button in the upper-right corner of the screen.
- Now your PC will show up. Tap it…
- … and you’ll be prompted to enter your Security Code. Do so, then tap OK.
- Android will now connect to your PC.
- Carefully review the Hints screen – they explain how to navigate your way through Windows via Splashtop HD (Android). You may even want to leave the Show hints every time option selected, until you ‘master’ controlling Windows via Android. Tap Continue.
- There it is – your Windows desktop on your Android device! From here you can completely control your Windows computer.
- Your Android keyboard acts as the “Windows” keyboard. The learning curve regarding ‘mouse’ gestures (tapping the screen, tapping the screen and dragging etc) is low. You’ll get used to controlling your PC via Splashtop HD quickly.
- One final thing to note – each time an Android device connects to Streamer on your Windows computer, Streamer will display a message indicating as much.
- Worth mentioning: I have read on several forums and even the in the Splashtop Help documentation that some people may need to set up port forwarding on their routers when connecting to your PC from outside of your home network. The web site Port Forward has fantastic and easy to follow instructions for nearly every modern router, and the ports you would need to forward are: 6783, 6784, and 6785. I have yet to require enabling port forwarding.