Better game controller rumble could be added in Android 12
With the rise of mobile and cloud gaming, Google is finally looking to improve the situation of controller rumble on Android. Currently, if you connect a gamepad to your Android device via USB or via Bluetooth, it is likely that it will not vibrate like when playing on a console. That’s because Android only provides minimal support for connected vibrating input devices – it’s either on or off. After announcing in October that the company was considering adding appropriate rumble support, we’ve now spotted code commits that improve game controller rumble.
When we first highlighted this issue in October, we initially noted that Android didn’t have an API to generate vibrations on external devices like a connected game controller. Turns out that’s not quite true, as Switch hacker and dev emulator statutes pointed out to us that Android offers rudimentary support for externally connected vibrating devices. The problem with the current implementation is that developers cannot control the amplitude of vibrations or generate custom vibration effects on connected devices, resulting in less than normal haptic feedback. As it stands, it’s better not to have haptic feedback than to have bad haptic feedback.
Fortunately, Google finally decided to tackle this problem a few months ago, and its engineers have submitted commits to AOSP seeking to improve support for input device rumble. The code changes add support for amplitude control and pave the way for the generation of custom vibration effects. Not all game controllers will be supported because the gamepad driver must support force feedback under Linux, but the majority of game controllers should work. This will be useful to support the rumble in games that have been designed for it, which include many console games accessible to mobile gamers through cloud game services such as Google’s Stadia, NVIDIA’s GeForce NOW, nvidia’s xCloud. Microsoft, etc.
Since these commits have yet to be merged, we don’t know if the rumble of the improved game controller will make its way to Android 12. However, it is possible that this feature has already been merged internally and Google is not. download commits now. public AOSP pension. Alternatively, Google can merge these changes over the next few days or weeks, giving them plenty of time to propagate into Android 12.
Featured Image: ASUS ROG Phone 3 with ROG Kunai 3 Game Controller