If you own an Android TV box or a television with it built in, there's a pretty good chance you've also taken the time to install Google's remote control app to go with it. It's not that the app is necessary, but it's a great backup in case your main remote is lost or the batteries die. All things considered, it's a pretty basic utility app; but it might not be quite so simple in the near future. A teardown shows that this little remote control is about to turn your phone into a full-fledged gamepad. There are also signs that it may soon take care of shutting off your TV for you and we might also gain control over the volume of voice responses.
The Nexus Player pumps TV shows and games alike to your TV, but for the latter, you're probably not going to use the included remote. Instead, you can consider springing for the Nexus Player gamepad to go with your set-top box.
The Nexus Player's pre-order saga has been an interesting one to say the least. First the device went up for pre-order with its accompanying gamepad, then it was marked as 'out of inventory' because it hadn't passed the FCC certification just yet, and finally it became available for pre-order again a week ago. Its gamepad however, went out of stock about the same time the player's pre-orders were halted, but didn't return with it. Now, it's back again.
Available for $39.99 with an estimated shipping date of 3 to 4 weeks, the gamepad is a cool accessory for those who want to use the Nexus Player as a gaming console.
Anyone looking for a solid Android gaming controller need look no further than the MOGA series. The original controller launched a year ago, and while there were and remain some drawbacks to the bundled software, the hardware itself is top notch. The latest generation hopes to address a fundamental drawback to gaming on a smartphone, the inescapable battery draining forces at work whenever you fire up a graphically intensive game and attempt to play it using a Bluetooth controller. Both the MOGA Hero Power and the Pro Power controllers let you recharge your handset as you game, and they're now available for anyone raring to give them a go.
Android-powered gaming systems are definitely on the rise as of late, with NVIDIA's SHIELD, OUYA, and the upcoming Mad Catz M.O.J.O., there's no shortage of ways to play Android games on something other than your phone or tablet. To keep up with the rest of the world, Archos has announced the sequel to its dedicated Android gaming system, the GamePad. I'll give you three guesses as to what the new version is called (and the first two don't count).
The GamePad 2 looks to be a nice little update to last year's model, as it features a higher resolution display, faster processor, and more RAM.
When we first reported on the iMpulse controller, I was excited. A super-portable Bluetooth controller that strives to capture the near-perfect control scheme of the Super NES and only adds a few ounces to my pocket? Sign me up! And that's exactly what I did, almost a year ago.
Now, eleven months later and six months after the controller was supposed to ship, I've got it in my hands. And it is a bitter, bitter disappointment. Not because of any lack in hardware capability, but because the software is so wretchedly poor that getting anything except an emulator app to work with the iMpulse is an exercise in head-banging frustration.
ARCHOS has announced its mobile strategy for the remainder of the year, highlighting tablets and smartphones that - hmm, to put this delicately - should appeal to a wide range of users. ARCHOS has been making Android tablets since before most of the major players, so it's typically worth checking out what they have to offer.
At the top of the list, we have the ARCHOS 101 XS 2, the successor to last year's ARCHOS 101 XS. This tablet comes with a quad-core processor and IPS screen. Like its predecessor, it still features a magnetic keyboard dock that doubles as a cover.
Back in August, Archos announced its then-upcoming GamePad, a tablet which looks to "revolutionize" gaming on Android. Featuring built-in physical game controls and custom button mapping software, the GamePad removes the need for touch controls, giving mobile gaming a more console-like feel, while its 7" display still keeps it portable enough to toss in your bag and take on-the-go. And now, it's finally available.
The GamePad is on sale in Europe for 149.99€, with North American availability coming in early 2013. The GP features some fairly decent specs, which should make for a solid gaming experience:
7" 1024x600 display
1.6GHz dual-core processor, with Mali 400 MP GPU
8GB onboard storage with microSD card slot and support for up to 64GB of additional space
At this time, there's no official word on North American pricing, but we'll keep you posted as soon as more information becomes available.
Back at the end of August, Archos announced an innovative new tablet called the GamePad. As its namesake suggests, it's built with gaming in mind - complete with on-board controls. In the announcement, Archos claimed the 7" device had "automatic gaming recognition and mapping tools" - the big question was, however, how's that going to work?
We now have a better idea of what to expect from the GamePad, as ArmDevices.net has gotten some hands-on time with the device. The first couple of minutes in the video are the most enlightening, as that's where they show off the button mapping tools.
ARCHOS, in an announcement that ambitiously looks to "revolutionize" Android gaming, has just unveiled the GamePad – a 7-inch, dual-core gaming tablet with built in controls (including buttons, a d-pad, triggers, and analog sticks) that remind us a little bit of Sony's PSP.
The interesting bit about this tablet is that it includes "automatic game recognition and mapping tools" which ARCHOS promises will "ensure control compatibility with every advanced Android game."
Of course, one of the most important things about a mobile device meant to center around gaming is its spec sheet. We aren't privy to the entire list of specs just yet, but here's what we do know: the GamePad will pack a yet unspecified dual-core processor at 1.5GHz with a Mali 400 quad-core GPU.