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Samsung launches Android controller that connects to your TV
Samsung launches Android controller that connects to your TV
December 18, 2013 | By Mike Rose

December 18, 2013 | By Mike Rose
More: Console/PC, Smartphone/Tablet, Business/Marketing

This year saw Apple introduce gamepad support for iOS devices. Now Android is about to get its own take on the mobile game controller, as Samsung today revealed its own controller hardware.

The Samsung Smartphone GamePad comes with a d-pad, two analog sticks, four action buttons, two trigger buttons, select and start buttons, and a "PLAY" button for launching directly into games on an optimized mobile device.

But Samsung isn't looking to simply echo Apple's efforts with its Smartphone GamePad, as the device also allows users to connect the gamepad to a TV via HDMI or wirelessly, and play Android games on the big-screen.

Essentially, Samsung has made a play for the microconsole space with little build-up or fanfare to speak of -- albeit with the need for an expensive mobile device to go with it.

The GamePad connects to movile devices via Bluetooth, and is optimized for all recent Samsung Galaxy devices, including the Galaxy Note 3, the Note II, the S III and the S4.

A newly launched application called the Mobile Console app is an integrated game-launching app that opens in conjunction with the GamePad, allowing users to more easily browse games that are gamepad-supported.

The GamePad is now available in Europe, with additional regions coming soon, says the company.

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James Coote
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Considering this has been tried a number of times by other companies and failed to take off in any significant way, I'm sceptical that even Samsung, with its marketing power and existing base of Samsung Galaxy/Note/etc users will be able to be any more successful.

Fundamentally, this is the wrong approach to microconsoles. It's not about making a phone do things that a console can, but about making a console first and foremost, then using cheap, commodity parts to drive the costs super-low: Both hardware wise in the form of mobile chipsets, and software in the form of using Android, rather than having to create your own custom console OS from scratch.

Micah Betts
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Phones aren't really considered "Microconsoles", devices like Ouya and Shield are pretty much doing exactly what you say

Terry Matthes
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You can already pair a PS3 controller with the six-axis app. Your phone has to be rooted but there's an app for that too.

Can we get a real D-pad. I mean for the love of god, why is PlayStation the only console to have one.

Jarod Smiley
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Only company that's actualyl is invested in the gaming aspect and not just trying to get more profit from the new wave.

Although I'm sure Sony will ramp up support for mobile devices based off Japan. Xperia Z should come bundled with a dual shock at this point lol.

Zaphod Plumbo
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"But Samsung isn't looking to simply echo Apple's efforts ... as the device also allows users to connect the gamepad to a TV via HDMI or wirelessly, and play Android games on the big-screen."

Don't Apple iOS devices already do this though - either by cable or by AppleTV?

Kujel s
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No, I don't think ios does that actually.

Kujel s
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Just a controller, not enough, make an actual microconsole or go home. Few devs will support just a controller but had they made a console and and done a "samsung zone" things would be different.

Ian Fisch
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Ugh. Honestly who's in charge over there?

Let's use the most hated D-pad design of the past 30 years. Also, let's make sure to have only 2 shoulder buttons, when every other console uses 4.

Lincoln Thurber
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The thing about Samsung is they are extremely well positioned not only as a very good HDTV manufacture or AV manufacture, but as the major Android phone/tablet manufacture too. You can throw around other companies in the Android space, but Samsung smartphones and tablets is already the defacto Android device maker.

We can all look at that controller and whinge about the mistakes, but Samsung will keep cracking at this idea. And, teh fact that Samsung sells so many...everything...everywhere means whatever they do matters.

Thomas Happ
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At least it has Select and Start buttons.