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Difference between Joystick and Trackball

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  • Last Updated : 23 May, 2022
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Joystick is an input device consisting of a stick that pivots on a base. It moves in different directions to control the device it is attached to. It is commonly used for playing video games. It has special push buttons which are pressed to provide input to the computer. It is also used as a control device in the cockpit of aeroplanes.

Trackball consists of a ball held by a socket containing sensors to detect the rotation of the balls which can be rotated in different directions. It is a pointing device used to move the pointer on the screen of the laptop. You can move the pointer by moving your finger on the touchpad of your device.


Below is a table of differentiation between Joystick and Trackball:




1. It is an input device which is used in controlling the pointer of the device it is attached with. It is also a pointing device which uses a ball to control the pointer.
2. The joystick was patented in 1926. The trackball was patented in 1947.
3. It is popular among gamers for playing games. It is mainly used for industrial purposes.
4. Only the stick moves in different directions but the base is fixed at a point. No movement of the device is required, only the ball needs to be rotated.
5. It provides high precision. The precision provided by trackball is good.
6. Ball bearings are used at the bottom and top of the joystick. It uses sockets with sensors to trackball movement.
7. It is more expensive compared to the trackball. It is less expensive compared to the joystick.
8. It is bigger in size and has a lower speed. It is small in size and has a faster speed.
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