How To Remote Control Your iPhone From Your Computer

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iphone remote controlThere are a number of apps in the Apple App Store that let you control your computer or a specific software using your iPhone. You can use your iPhone as a mouse, remote control iTunes with it and do a whole lot more. Such apps are fun to use simply by the virtue of the “awesomeness” factor.

Let’s just turn the tables a bit. How about an iPhone remote control app that lets you control your iPhone using your computer?  Especially if you bitten by the texting bug! Now you can type fast and do work on your laptop while having the iPhone open in a separate application on your computer. Interested? Let’s see how you can do it.


We are going to be using the iPhone as a VNC server. Apple, of course wouldn’t allow such a feat to be accomplished on their cherished device, so you won’t find any such application in the Apple App Store. However, you might be aware that another very popular platform exists where you can get free and paid apps that you won’t find on Apple’s App Store. I am talking about Cydia.

Before we proceed any further I must mention a disclaimer. Jailbreaking has recently been legalized in the United States but you might want to check your local laws if you are outside the United States. Also keep in mind that jailbreaking will void your Apple warranty.

We need a jailbroken device for Cydia and we need Cydia for Veency which is the app that lets you connect to your iPhone remotely via VNC and thus control it from your computer. Veency is of course not the only app that jailbroken device owners might be interested in. There are lots of them available via Cydia that let you tweak your iPhone in ways no other app on the App Store would let you do.

Jailbreaking is easier than ever before with the latest app called jailbreakme. The actual process is however beyond the scope of our discussion here.

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Installing Veency

  • Open Cydia on your iPhone. Let it download the packages and do its thing. Now go to search and look for Veency.

iphone remote control

  • Click or tap on Veency. You will be able to see details of the Veency Package. Browse through them to know more about it.
  • Once satisfied you can click the Install button towards the top right.
  • Cydia will ask for confirmation before proceeding and show you a summary of what will be changed

remote desktop iphone

  • Confirm and Veency will be downloaded and installed on your iPhone.

Using Veency

From a configuration point of view you only need to ensure that WiFi is switched on your iDevice before you can access it remotely. You will also need to know the IP address that gets assigned to your device. You already know this if you assigned it manually.

Else you can find the IP address assigned to your device by visiting Settings > General. Then click on the blue arrow next to WiFi network name and you should find your settings listed there.

remote desktop iphone

Accessing Remotely

Your iDevice now has a VNC server installed. So you should be able to connect easily using a VNC client. We have covered a number of them before. TightVNC stands out if you are on Windows. Download and install it from here. A portable version is also available if you are so inclined. Once that is out of the way, fire it up.

remote desktop iphone

Next up you need to enter the IP address we determined above. And confirm the VNC request:

Once you are connected you will be able to use your iPhone remotely via your computer.

iphone remote control

This is especially handy when typing long messages or accessing your iPhone in another room. There are certain downsides as well. Since you are using this with the mouse you won’t be able to replicate all the ground breaking gestures that make the iPhone so special.

I didn’t get the opportunity to test the setup with a magic mouse or magic trackpad. It would be interesting to know how things behave with these devices in the equation. Maybe some of you can let us know?

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Comments (18)
  • Kam D’Man

    thanks man,

    although,

    how do i press the home button from a vnc viewer on mac.

    im using assistive touch for home button atm…

    using “VNC Viewer”

  • Isaac

    Thanks a lot, man!

  • Kevin W. Mullet

    I was desperate to remotely use my phone in a hurry, because we use WhatsApp for on-call urgent texting, and iPhone users are the only ones who don’t have access to the WhatsApp web client, presumably because API restrictions in IOS.

    I got everything up in about five minutes. I’m on an iPhone 5C, Jailbroken, running IOS 8.1, and Veency 0.9.3500.

    To the person who finds that they can only view their phone, VNC clients typically have both a ‘view’ and a ‘use’ mode.

    I’m using my phone with My Macbook’s “Screen Sharing” app. To put it into ‘use’ mode, I had to go to View/Show Toolbar, then select the ‘control mode’ icon on the left (pointer with concentric waves) instead of the ‘observe mode’ (binoculars).

    I don’t know if this is a function of what client I’m using or of Veency, but…
    Left click is touch. Right click is home button. Mouse or Trackpad scroll does NOT translate to device scroll. You have to left-click touch and drag up or down to scroll on device.

    My idle lock engaged when I was typing this, and I was able to touch the screen in VNC and type my screen lock code to get back in, so that’s nice.

    I STRONGLY urge you, if you’re using Screen Sharing on OS X (or any other client that supports adaptive quality) to use adaptive quality to somewhat alleviate the sluggishness.

    I’m not sure if I’d use this to project my phone for a demo. If there was enough typing involved, I might, because auto-correct is just damn maddening. If I didn’t, though, I’d connect my iPhone or iPad to my mac via my sync cable, go into QuickTime, Create new video, and select my device from the drop down to the right of the right of the record button. That lets me display my phone in QuickTime and/or record it, and the response time is much better. It’s strictly observe only, though.

  • Rafaqat Ali Ranjha

    It does not type in the apps though it shows iphone on your computer. All the commands work but does not type into apps. Do i have any alternate to type into iphone through pc?

  • Raafat_ahmed

    I liked that and tested it yesterday .. My only concern is the delay on my pc. I click an icon, I find it opened on the iPhone and maybe after 1or 2 seconds it opened on my desktop .. Any solution for that delay ?

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This review may contain affiliate links, which pays us a small compensation if you do decide to make a purchase based on our recommendation. Our judgement is in no way biased, and our recommendations are always based on the merits of the items.

For more details, please read our disclosure.
Affiliate Disclamer

This review may contain affiliate links, which pays us a small compensation if you do decide to make a purchase based on our recommendation. Our judgement is in no way biased, and our recommendations are always based on the merits of the items.

For more details, please read our disclosure.