Take a look at that photo above. It looks like your standard console video game controller – really nothing too exciting. On the other hand, looks can be deceiving. The photo above is the 60Beat GamePad ($49.95), a game controller that uses no batteries, connects to your iPad, iPhone or iPod Touch via the headphone jack and turns your iOS device into a console level video game system. Doesn’t seem that “standard” anymore, does it?
Amazing Things Happen When You Take Your Thumbs Off Your iPad
Yes, iOS devices are phones, music players and cameras…but let’s not forget one of the real appeals of iPhones and iPads – playing video games! The graphics and computing power of the latest generation iPhones, iPads and iPod Touches has turned them into impressive video game machines. Really the only limitation in terms of how far game programmers can go is the user interface. Sure, certain games work fine by swiping your thumbs on the screen, but for other games, the lack of a dedicated game controller severely limits game play.
The 60Beat GamePad, with its dual analog joysticks, control pad and programmable keys allows you to play iOS games like you have never played them before. Take a look at our hands-on video review of the 60Beat GamePad Controller -
Is a Game Controller For the iPad or iPhone Really Necessary?
While the above video shows that the 60Beat GamePad Controller did work beautifully, the question must be asked if a game controller for the iPhone/iPad is necessary. No, a controller is not necessary. Just ask the millions of people who play Angry Birds and you will find they are perfectly happy to launch birds with their thumbs.
On the other hand, talk to people who have tried to play sports games or first person shooters on their iOS device and you will find some people with frustrated thumbs. With the big beautiful screen on the iPad, sports and fist person shooters can look great…but play terribly. The 60Beat GamePad can make playing these type of games as fun as playing them on a video game console.
Finally, Cutting Edge Technology That Doesn’t Cut You!
From testing the 60Beat GamePad I know that it works. Now, ask me how it works and I have no idea. How do they get all that data from the GamePad into an iPad or iPhone via the headphone jack? Isn’t the headphone jack for sending data out? How does the GamePad work without any batteries? Is it getting power from the headphone jack? Does it have a cold fusion generator inside?
I have no idea how the GamePad works, but what’s great is that doesn’t matter! No drivers to install, no installation programs – just plug it in and play any 60Beat GamePad compatible game. As a Dad, I appreciate any cutting edge gadget that hides all the technology tricks from me and is truly plug and play.
What We Loved About the 60Beat GamePad:
- Incredibly Responsive, Absolutely No Lag
- Removing Controls From the Screen Frees Up Screen Space
- Kids Get their Grubby Hands on your GamePad, Not Your iPad!
- True Plug and Play
- Potential To Play Games That Just Don’t Work Well With Touch Controls (sports, 1st person shooter)
What Was Problematic About the 60Beat GamePad:
- Currently Only a Limited Number of Games that Work with the GamePad
- Speakers on Ipad/Iphone Are Disabled When the GamePad is Plugged in
Conclusion: The 60Beat GamePad is Loaded With Potential
Any review of the 60Beat GamePad needs to discuss its biggest drawback – the lack of games that currently support the controller. iOS games need to contain special code to work with the 60Beat GamePad and as of 1/23/12 there are only seven games that work with the controller. The GamePad was just released at the end of 2011, so it is not surprising that game support just a few weeks after launch is very light.
More game support is promised in the next few months, but until those games come out, the GamePad will have more potential than real world value. Still, the GamePad absolutely made every game we played better and more fun. As our criteria for a good product is one that makes your life a little easier, better or more fun in some way, the 60Beat GamePad is a clear winner. Given this, we have no problem being an early adopter with the GamePad and hoping that game developers jump on board quickly!
Visit 60Beat.Com to Learn More About the GamePad ($49.95)
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