Samsung launches the “Smartphone GamePad”, says you actually don’t need an XBOX or PS4

BY Stefan Constantinescu

Published 17 Dec 2013

For those of you old enough to remember the first PlayStation, chances are you’ve already played a game on your smartphone or tablet that looks as good or even better than Sony’s first games consoles. Where consoles are superior, however, is their precision controllers and ability to connect to a large screen television. Samsung is aiming to address that today with the launch of the “Smartphone GamePad”.

What exactly is it? It’s an NFC enabled Bluetooth accessory that features a mount for your smartphone. If you happen to have a Samsung smartphone, you can download the Samsung “Mobile Console” app store, which has Android games that are customized to work perfectly with the GamePad. And if you also have a Samsung TV, then you can mirror your phone’s display to that TV wirelessly, instantly giving you a portable videogame system.

Will anyone actually buy this? A few people, yes, just to try it out. Then they’ll stick it in a closet and never use it again. Look, games are amazing on phones because they’re designed to be touched and they’re designed for the two to three minutes you’re standing in line at the supermarket. This accessory assumes you actually want to do some serious gaming, and that frankly doesn’t exist on mobile.

What’s worse is that there’s no price in the press release. Knowing Samsung, expect this thing to cost at least $70, probably even $100. For that amount of cash, why not just get yourself a Vita or 3DS?

Even better: Why not spend that money on actual games?