During the pandemic in 2020, I ordered and got a Bluetooth controller (Gen Game). It’s a highly functional device to control most of your smart devices. For example, I use it to control my Android smartphone, tablet, and TV. Finally, with a USB cable (or if your PC has Bluetooth or you add a Bluetooth adapter), you can play games on your PC rather than use the mouse or keyboard.
So, I’ve seen the value of a mobile controller and think you should get one. I’ve done more research, and in this post, I’ll share with you the best bluetooth controllers for Android and iOS smart devices this year. I’ll also give you tips for choosing one and answer other questions you may be asking.
Review of the Best Bluetooth Controllers for Android and iOS
1. Overall Best for iOS Devices – Rotor Riot RR1850 Gamepad Controller
- L3 + R3 Buttons
- ZeroG mobile holder
- MFi certified
The Rotor Riot is an MFi-certified mobile game controller. If it’s your first time seeing that, the MFi certification here means it is made for iPhone/iPod/iPad, and Apple has approved it for these devices.
Rotor Riot is compatible with lightning-connected Apple devices with iOS 7 or later. One of the things I liked about this device is that it has a clip to hold your device. But you can remove it if you’re not using it.
Unlike most MFi controllers released, the Rotor Riot is not wireless. Instead, to connect it to an iOS device, you must plug in its built-in Lightning cable.
This has several advantages: zero latency and no risk of losing the connection (Bluetooth is sometimes finicky). And you don’t have to worry about charging the battery as with my wireless controller. Instead, the Rotor Riot gets its juice from the iOS device it’s plugged into.
Many people found that their iPhone battery didn’t drain much faster with the controller plugged in. So there is nothing to worry about on this point.
One main drawback, which will be prohibitive for some, is that the controller is not compatible with all Apple devices. For example, you can’t connect it to the iPad Pro 2018, which has a USB-C port… Same problem with the Apple TV, which does not have a Lightning port. The manufacturer, however, markets another version equipped with a USB-C cable which is also compatible with Android devices.
- It comes with a mount for iPhone
- Wired connection (no hassle for pairing and battery)
- Great for CoD players who can’t afford a console
- Doesn’t use a battery
- No lags and latency known for Bluetooth controllers
- Not compatible with Apple TV and iPad Pro 2018
- There is no select button
2. Best Nintendo Switch Clone – GameSir X2
- Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity
- 500 maH battery
- One-click screenshot button
Anyone with the Nintendo Switch design in mind cannot deny the visual relationship between the GameSir X2 controller and the handheld classic. The X2 and your smartphone combination are almost outrageously reminiscent of the Nintendo Switch.
The GameSir has a rotatable USB-C port (no Lightning connector), which makes it much easier to attach the phone.
However, only medium-sized smartphones fit in the holder. The adjustable mount of the gamepad fits phones with a maximum length of 173 millimeters (mm).
The connection is made with a USB-C connector. In addition to the usual buttons, there’s a screenshot button and a button to turn the microphone on/off.
You can use the X2 to play games like Call of Duty – Mobile, Fortnite, Genshin Impact (iOS), Asphalt 9, Roblox, Apple Arcade, and MFi games.
However, the controller does not support headphones, and not every smartphone can be charged while playing.
- Designed to look like the Nintendo Switch
- Relatively long battery life
- One-click screenshot button
- Compatible with Android, iOS, and Xbox devices
- You can’t charge it while playing games
3. Best Tactile Feedback – Razer Raiju Mobile
- Razer™ Mecha-Tactile action buttons
- Compatible with Android
- Hair Trigger Mode
- Adjustable phone mount
The Razer Raiju Mobile controller is perhaps one of the most expensive currently on the market. But at the same time, it is one of the best smartphone Bluetooth controllers.
It has come a long way from the Raiju wired version released in 2016. And this one is a fully wireless Bluetooth controller, the brand’s flagship.
This device is equipped with advanced features that maximize the mobile gaming experience. For example, the integrated application allows you to create profiles for your favorite games and make a custom key mapping for each title.
In addition to the Hair Trigger mode, which is an advantage in competition, the phone holder is adjustable to find the point of the viewing angle.
With the Razer Raiju mobile, the smartphone is safely held using the integrated holder and can be connected with cable or Bluetooth.
A special thing about it is an app that customizes key controls and combinations. This ensures even more gaming comfort.
However, I have to mention that the Razer Raiju mobile is relatively heavy and bulky. It also weighs quite a bit in terms of price. Only worth it for intensive gaming.
- Can be connected wired or wirelessly
- Feels comfortable in the hand
- It can be configured with a mobile app
- A bit pricier than other game controllers
- It doesn’t work with iOS devices; only Android
4. Best Premium Controller – Backbone One BB-01-B-E Gaming Controller
- Pass-through charging
- 3.5mm headset jack
- Backbone+ all-in-one launcher
- iPhone compatibility
Among the most expensive but popular controllers on the market is, no doubt, the Backbone One. However, if you’re not ready to drop a C-note on this one, skip this and check the other products. But wait… It’s really a premium-quality controller!
If you’re fed up with the latency issues from Bluetooth controllers, the Backbone One gives you that break! It can be installed on all the latest Apple iOS devices with Lightning input.
The system requirements provided by the manufacturer highlight a need to own an iPhone with at least iOS 15.
The gamepad supports platforms such as Discord Nitro, Game Pass Ultimate, Apple Arcade, PS Remote Play, Steam Link, and Xbox Cloud Gaming. And, of course, it supports games from official stores such as the App Store and Play Store.
Generally speaking, any game can be played with Backbone One, especially in Cloud Gaming, which could extend even further in the future.
The connectivity is completely Plug and Play. There is no Bluetooth compatibility and any need to pair the controller.
The structure extends horizontally, and the smartphone is placed inside it. If the smartphone is inserted in the right direction, the controller will automatically detect the smartphone.
As we’re not connecting via Bluetooth, the gameplay and controls run smoothly without interference or latency. The package comes with a Lightning port (or USB-C) and a 3.5 mm headphone input.
- Low latency thanks to the Lightning connectivity
- Allows use while it charges for long gaming sessions
- Compatible with the latest iOS devices, from iOS 15 and up
- The controller perfectly fits into most iPhones
- Looks a bit overpriced when you compare it with other models here
Read also: Best PS5 & PS4 Controllers with Paddles
5. Best for Long Playing Time – PowerA MOGA XP7-X Plus
- PC (Win 7+) and Android compatibility
- Wireless (Bluetooth) and USB cable connectivity
- Built-in rechargeable lithium battery
Made with high-quality materials, the MOGA XP7-X Plus is another top-quality controller. It comes in the price range of the Backbone One.
But this is a little bit heavier, with a weight of around 349 grams without a smartphone set in the central compartment. On the one hand, this gives solidity to the product. And on the other, it doesn’t make it easy to carry with you on the move.
However, the weight of the MOGA XP7-X Plus is due to the built-in 2000 mAh power bank. This allows you to recharge your mobile phone while playing.
Unlike the Backbone One, you can connect the controller to the smartphone via Bluetooth or a Lightning or USB cable. It uses a micro USB socket which also serves as a charging port. The package also comes with a USB cable and micro USB-C adapter.
I must also mention that you can use it on Android or PC devices. But it doesn’t work on Xbox consoles.
As it’s made under an Xbox license, the MOGA XP7-X Plus shares immediately recognizable details with the Microsoft Xbox controllers. These include the shape, power button (the green X on white background), and coloring of the front buttons.
The similarities stop here, however, since the smartphone occupies the central portion of the device. This makes it much longer than a normal controller, especially if the clamp mechanism is extended to the maximum size of 7 inches.
- Sturdy and well built
- Built-in power bank
- You can choose between a wired and wireless connectivity
- Heavier in weight and price
- A little too hard analog trigger
6. Best Universal Controller – Razer Kishi Mobile Game Controller
- Cloud-ready controller
- Compatible with most Android and iOS devices
- Low latency connection
- Pass-through charging
The Razer Kishi is a universal game controller that works with most smartphones, that is, both Android and iOS devices.
The device feels very good in the hands, offers a wide range of functions, and is, therefore, particularly suitable for fast-reacting games. In addition, the Razer Kishi charges the smartphone during use.
With a versatile design supported by almost all Android devices through a central USB-C port, the Razer Kishi controller uses the phone’s battery and does not need to be recharged. This feature makes it less vulnerable to lags than other BlueTooth controllers.
Compact and portable to carry with you, it is perfect to use for long gaming sessions thanks to its ergonomic design and secure grip.
The controller is equipped with a Lightning connector for iOS devices and a USB-C connector for Android smartphones. A direct connection should enable low latencies. Finally, note that the controller supports cloud gaming services like Geforce Now and Xbox Cloud Gaming.
- Collapsible for ease of storage
- Flexible design so it can fit most smartphones snugly
- Light in hand and ergonomic
- Won’t fit your phone with the case on
Controlling your games with finger touches on the screen is handy for some games. But it gets tricky when you’re playing games like Fortnite, PUBG Mobile, Need For Speed, PES, etc. These require a lot of button actions and, above all, great movement.
A game controller makes it feel like you’re playing on a console. But to get value for your money and not be disappointed, in this section, I’ll tell you everything you need to consider before choosing.
Mobile controllers are different from Xbox gamepads that don’t need a mobile phone mounted. So, the designs for mobile controllers vary. They are specifically in two styles:
- Switch style controllers: Are you addicted to Nintendo Switch and want a controller that allows that treat, but using your phone? Then you’d appreciate game controllers like the Backbone One or GameSir X2. What I like about these controllers is that they can be compacted to pocket size when not in use. In addition, they’re flexible and adjustable horizontally to fit your phone, whatever the size.
- The classic controllers with mount: Those who want Xbox-style controllers can use traditional mobile controllers like the PowerA MOGA XP7-X Plus. They have special support that allows your mobile phone to be securely placed. What’s great here is these mounts are usually removable. So when using it for your PC or TV, you can remove and keep the mount.
Which elements are important, and which are optional?
With a few exceptions, controllers currently offered on the market adhere to standards in terms of shape and equipment with action buttons (i.e., D-pads, analog sticks, and trigger buttons). On the other hand, luxury class gamepads often have optional extras that can make gameplay and other uses more ergonomic:
The basic elements
A game controller must contain all the buttons and accessories needed for smooth gameplay. These include:
At the right side of the gamepad are usually found four action buttons with the letters “Y,” “X,” “A,” and “B.” There are also usually three additional buttons that are often assigned the functions “Back,” “Menu,” or “Mode.” Sometimes, these can be “Select” and “Start” buttons. They are important on a gamepad. But not all pads come with these buttons. So watch out for them!
Precision analog sticks
Some games are not best played with the directional and action buttons. However, a complete gamepad has two small joysticks for the analog control of game characters or steering pixel cars.
They ensure precision controls to move characters or objects on a 360° scope. They are operated with thumbs; ideally, their top surface is rubberized. Unfortunately, not all controllers come with these analog sticks. So if these are what you’re used to, watch out for them!
The directional pad is a four-way control with a button switch at each point. The D-Pad is also operated with the thumb regardless of the controller layout.
Based on personal experience, this was the pad I started with, like most beginners. You can start using the analog sticks for racing games or when the D-pads aren’t functioning great.
The two back trigger buttons at the top of the control are reminiscent of the trigger of a firearm. Again, not all controllers come with these. But you can find them on a controller like the PowerA MOGA XP7-X Plus pictured above. They are often labeled L2 and R2.
They are operated with the index fingers and have a specific trigger path that makes it possible, for example, in racing games, to accelerate and brake in a controlled manner. In action games and first-person shooting, on the other hand, the triggers are often used to fire the weapon or zoom the scope.
The buttons above the trigger, also known as bumpers, are operated with the index fingers and supplement the digital action buttons on the top, which ideally also have micro switches. They are often labeled L1 and R1 buttons.
- Extra buttons or pedal buttons: These additional accessories are only available on top-end controllers. They’re intended to transfer the function of the two shoulder buttons or the four action buttons to the assignable extra buttons on the underside and between the triggers.
- Attachments for the analog sticks and replaceable D-Pad: These accessories primarily improve the feel of the controller. It gives the gamer the option of customizing the length of the analog sticks, and the shape of the thumb rest to the anatomy of the thumb. This also applies to the various attachments on the control pad, which offer the thumb a different size of the contact surface.
- Trigger lock: The shorter the distance between the two triggers, the earlier they will also be triggered. A long trigger pull is a disadvantage, especially in games such as first-person shooters. Here, it is important to shoot the weapon particularly quickly. The mechanical shortening of the trigger path helps here.
- Transport bag: A bag not only protects the controller from dust. It is also where the accessories can be stored. Some brands even like to go a step further with a nylon case that integrates the charging station for the internal battery there.
- Headset Jack: A 3.5mm stereo jack for a gaming headset is typically found on wireless controllers, and with good reason. If you connect the gaming headset to the controller, you can move freely with the gamepad and gaming headset. In addition, you are no longer restricted by the connection cable being plugged into the computer’s audio output.
Last update on 2023-02-05 We are an Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk, and Amazon.in affiliate and earn from qualifying purchases through our links at no extra cost to you.