60beat GamePad brings console-like controls to iDevices
While the success of Apple's iDevices has prompted a swathe of games perfectly suited to a touchscreen interface, many types of games suffer when making the transition from a controller-based interface. As a result we've seen a number of peripherals designed to add a physical controller to iOS devices, such as the GameBone Pro, iControlPad and low-tech JOYSTICK-IT. Those looking for a slightly more traditional input device for their mobile gaming needs now have yet another product to consider in the form of the 60beat GamePad.
Coming in an Xbox 360 controller-like form factor, the GamePad packs dual analog joysticks, a D-pad and 10 action buttons and connects to an iPhone 4 or 4S, iPad 1 or 2 and iPod touch 4G via their 3.5 mm headphone jacks. As it draws power from the connected iDevice, it requires no batteries, which also contributes to its weight of just 5.5 oz (156 g). Thankfully the GamePad comes with an audio splitter to let you plug in headphones and the GamePad at the same time. It's also worth noting that when the GamePad is plugged in, the game's onscreen controls will disappear to provide a more immersive experience.
On the downside, the list of GamePad compatible games is currently limited to two launch partner titles so you'll need to be a big fan of Bugdom 2 or Aftermath to justify the US$49.99 price tag. However, 60beat says a wider selection of compatible games will be listed in February 2012.
Here's a video from 60beat showing the GamePad in action.