iControlPad Brings Physical Gaming Controls to The iPhone

by


When Apple called the iPod Touch the "Funnest iPod Ever", it was clear Apple was talking about gaming. But using the touch sensitive screen on the iPod -- and iPad and iPhone for that matter -- isn't necessarily the best way to input commands. Especially for action games like NBA JAM or Madden.

Some companies make "joysticks" that try to bridge the gap, but it's still a far cry from having physical buttons like a Nintendo DS. One solution is the iCade, which started as an April Fool's Joke, but was so popular that ThinkGeek turned it into a real product. It's great, but not exactly portable.

Now, we have the iControlPad. It's a Bluetooth control pad that's been in the works for more than three years -- and it's finally shipping.

Now, the iControlPad is great in theory, but it's not exactly an answer to gamer prayers -- through no fault of its own. No, the problem is that there aren't many games on the App Store that support it because of the restrictions Apple places on how bluetooth devices interact with apps. TouchArcade explains:

While, due to the aforementioned restrictions, the iControlPad can only interface with un-jailbroken iOS devices by way of keyboard emulation, it can interface with other platforms, including Android and WebOS, via the more robust protocols and, thus, deliver its full range of capabilities. Keyboard emulation does allow all other controls on the device to work under iOS — but no analog sticks, which need to send a constant stream of positional data to the host device.

Jailbroken iOS devices, on the other hand, can take full advantage of the analog sticks:


While the iControlPad may be the controller that iOS gamers have been waiting for, the App support isn't quite there yet for non-jailbroken devices. The developers promise iCade emulation support in the future which so far appears to be generating the most App Store support for a 3rd party controller.

Top Rated Comments

(View all)
Avatar
121 months ago

wow that looks like crap, did someone re-appropriate a 1st gen GameBoy?


Last time I checked the original GameBoy didn't have four action buttons, dual analog sticks and Bluetooth. ;) I don't think the design is that bad for a 3rd party accessory. It sure beats a bluetooth chip shoved into an NES controller!
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
121 months ago
Why does it rely on Bluetooth, though?

Why not through the dock connector?
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
121 months ago
Am I the only one bothered by the word, "funnest?"
The incorrect use of the word, "fun."
I'm just curious.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
121 months ago
Forget the control pad... I just want Wipeout as an app on my iPhone! :cool:
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
121 months ago
********** mega!
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
121 months ago
that's so dam hideous
Score: 0 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

First iPhone 12 Mini Hands-On Video Surfaces [Update: Video Pulled]

Wednesday October 28, 2020 1:21 pm PDT by
Apple's iPhone 12 mini and the iPhone 12 Pro Max aren't set to be available until November 13, but a Romanian YouTuber got his hands on the iPhone 12 mini and showed it off today, offering a size comparison between the iPhone 12 and the 12 mini along with going over some of the device's features. The iPhone 12 mini is identical to the iPhone 12 in design and functionality, but it has a...

Apple References Unreleased 2020 16-Inch MacBook Pro in Boot Camp Update

Monday October 26, 2020 8:42 am PDT by
Last week, Apple released an update for Boot Camp, its utility for running Windows on a Mac. While this update would typically be unremarkable, several of our readers noticed that the release notes reference an unreleased 2020 model of the 16-inch MacBook Pro. While this could easily be a mistake, the 16-inch MacBook Pro is nearly a year old, so it is certainly a worthy candidate for a...

After Mocking Apple, Samsung May Remove Power Adapter From Galaxy S21 Box

Tuesday October 27, 2020 4:29 pm PDT by
Samsung's Galaxy S21, coming in 2021, may not include a power adapter or headphones in the box, according to reports from Korean media sites highlighted by SamMobile. Rumors earlier this year also said that Samsung was considering removing these accessories from future smartphone models, but that didn't stop Samsung from mocking Apple for selling the iPhone 12 models without a power adapter...

Report: Apple Silicon iMac Featuring Desktop Class 'A14T' Chip Coming First Half of 2021

Tuesday October 27, 2020 4:14 am PDT by
The first iMac powered by Apple Silicon is set to arrive in the first half of next year and will feature a desktop class "A14T" chip, according to Chinese-language newspaper The China Times. Codenamed "Mt. Jade," Apple's first custom-made desktop processor will be twinned with its first self-developed GPU, codenamed "Lifuka," both of which are being produced using TSMC's 5-nanometer process, ...

iPhone 12 Ceramic Shield Still 'Scratches at Level 6 With Deeper Grooves at Level 7' in Mohs Hardness Test

Wednesday October 28, 2020 7:10 am PDT by
iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro models feature a new Ceramic Shield front cover that is "tougher than any smartphone glass," according to Apple, but the displays on the devices still have similar scratch resistance as previous iPhones based on a new test. Zack Nelson today shared his much-anticipated iPhone 12 Pro durability test on his YouTube channel JerryRigEverything, and based on the Mohs...

2020 iPad Air vs. iPad Pro: Hands-On Comparison

Tuesday October 27, 2020 3:03 pm PDT by
Apple announced the new 2020 fourth-generation iPad Air in September, but the new tablets just started shipping out to customers last Friday. We picked one up and thought we'd do a hands-on comparison with the iPad Pro, which was last updated in March, because both tablets are about as powerful and share many similarities. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. Design and ...

MagSafe Charger Only Charges at Full 15W Speeds With Apple's 20W Power Adapter [Updated]

Monday October 26, 2020 3:38 pm PDT by
Alongside the iPhone 12 and 12 Pro models, Apple introduced a new MagSafe charger that attaches to the magnetic ring in the back of the devices, providing up to 15W of charging power, which is double the speed of the 7.5W Qi-based wireless charging maximum. Apple does not provide a power adapter with the $39 MagSafe charger, requiring users to supply their own USB-C compatible option. Apple...

Apple Files Mystery 'Personal Computer' With Placeholder 'B2002' Name in Bluetooth Product Database

Tuesday October 27, 2020 12:36 pm PDT by
Last week, a listing appeared in the Bluetooth product database for an Apple product with a placeholder name "B2002" and a model number of "TBD." MacRumors was alerted to the listing by health and fitness tech website MyHealthyApple. The product is filed under the "personal computer" category, which Apple has used for previous Mac and iPad listings in the database, so it is hard to pinpoint...

Apple Releases First macOS Big Sur 11.0.1 Beta to Developers [Update: Public Beta Available]

Wednesday October 28, 2020 10:15 am PDT by
Apple today seeded a new macOS Big Sur 11.0.1 beta to developers for testing purposes, with the new beta replacing the existing macOS Big Sur 11 beta 10 update that was released two weeks ago. The macOS Big Sur beta can be downloaded through the Apple Developer Center and once the appropriate profile is installed, subsequent betas will be available through the Software Update mechanism in...

iPhone 12 Models Might Support Reverse Charging of Future Apple Accessories According to FCC Filing

Tuesday October 27, 2020 6:25 pm PDT by
iPhone 12 models could have an inactive wireless charging feature for accessories, according to an FCC filing discovered by VentureBeat's Jeremy Horwitz. In the filing, Apple said that 2020 iPhones support a wireless charging function that will seemingly be enabled for at least one future Apple accessory:In addition to being able to be charged by a desktop WPT charger (puck), 2020 iPhones...