With the recent news that nine out of the top 10 all-time best selling App Store releases are games, you can feel pretty comfortable in saying that games are getting pretty big on Apple’s iDevices. Perfect timing then for Gadget Labs to release its iControlPad, which was first announced back in 2008.
The iControlPad is a Bluetooth dock for your cellphone that is designed to mimic a modern-day gamepad. There are four face buttons, two rear-facing buttons, Start/Select buttons, a directional pad and two nubs that offer analog joystick controls. There’s also a 1500maH internal battery that offers the option of charging your phone via USB while playing.
Gadget Labs originally announced the iControlPad as an iPhone/iPod Touch product, though the company has expanded the range of supported devices in the time since. All generations of the Apple devices are supported, as are the LG Optimus S, LG Ally, Blackberry Touch, HTC Dream, T-Mobile G1 and Era G1. Motorola’s Backflip and Samsung’s Intercept are also listed, though the former “needs padding” and the latter “may require adjustment.” Certain models of iPod Touch also require additional padding. The control pad itself comes with several different docks, each tailored to a specific phone or phones.
It should be noted that the developer page specifically calls out the iPhone as a special case: “iPhone users should have jailbreak but [the iControlPad] does work on unbroken iPhone in keyboard mode.” If jailbreaking is something that scares you — and it really shouldn’t — this might not be the purchase for you. It’s also on the expensive side, with a $74.99 option that includes the side mounts and a $59.99 option that is just the controller itself. You can order them now at the company’s product page, though orders won’t start shipping until the iControlPad’s February 16 release.