I'm debating if i should get droid x. i'd like to use it for work, meaning latex and code in c++. I use vim.

i know this is possible with connectbot. but possible doesn't mean i can substitute a laptop in a coffee shop. are there people that use bluetooth keyboard with android device and are happy like this one (http://www.fourhourworkweek.com/blog/2010/08/20/travel-with-no-baggage/)? I don't mind the small screen.

just curious about your experience. and i think some keyboards have esc key, which is good for vim.


My current set-up:

note 3 running juiceSSH and vnc (i couldn't get nx to work), perixx 805L, ms wedge mouse, and quikpod tripod to hold the note 3 at the eye level.

  • 1
    Really good question. I'd like to know myself as I've recently created an Ubuntu machine that I can remote into. Droid 1's keyboard is much better than the virtual screen for shell, but still lacks a lot of necessary keys.
    – Bryan Denny
    Commented Oct 22, 2010 at 0:12
  • droid x has a bigger screen and i agree about inconvenience of virtual keyboard. i was gonna use this (amazon.com/Freedom-Pro-Bluetooth-Keyboard/dp/B0030IT6AO/…) with droid x Commented Oct 22, 2010 at 3:26

4 Answers 4


So, I have a Nexus One.

Firstly: do not try to use the soft keyboard for any form of coding. It's workable, to an extent, with connectbot's help, for system administration, but coding is flat out. If you insist on trying, look at Full Keyboard.

Secondly: the screen size is an issue, at least for me. I haven't found a font size that is both readable for long sessions and displays enough code on the screen.

Coding and longform text are still definitely a Computer thing.


Try mosh for a potential solution to latency issues. It does heuristic echoing of local keystrokes, so you get more immediate feedback and things feel less choppy.


I recommend ConnectBot for SSH. My biggest issue with Vim has always been getting the Escape key to work. By default, I believe the Escape key is the same as the Back key in Android.

One answer I found on stackoverflow (can't find the link) is to map a key sequence to escape:

:imap qq <Esc> " map qq to Escape while in insert mode

This should allow fairly normal Vim usage on Android. You can either enter it every time or add it to .vimrc. I got fed up with my Lapdock before I found this, but I will need to go back and try again.

Alternative: instead of Esc use Ctrl-[ - that works without additional mappings (http://vimdoc.sourceforge.net/htmldoc/insert.html#i_CTRL-[)


I ended up coding a lot on it. it works quite well. i use iGo Stowaway bluetooth keyboard (it fits in a pocket). i map esc to jk or jj. i also bring a charger just in case.

the small font size doesn't bother me as much. i just move my head closer to the screen.

also alt-tab works for switching application. it's useful because you need to use a stackoverflow for coding :-)

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