In a review of the new iPad on the hardware website Anandtech, the site’s founder, Anand Lal Shimpi, discussed the tablet’s relevance to gaming and noting that he knows of an “internal Apple project to bring a physical controller to market but whether or not it will ever see the light of day remains to be seen.”
The idea of an actual controller for a tablet is nothing new. For example, the latest Android devices include support for third-party controllers but so far adoption rates remain low, and as a result so does software support for the peripheral. If Apple is indeed working on a physical controller for the iPad, and they make its adoption standard by including it with the purchase of the tablet, it has the potential to disrupt the entire video game industry.
Tablets are hugely popular with consumers, but have limited appeal as a video game device due to being restricted to the touchscreen as the only input option. An included first-party physical controller with the iPad would make ports of traditional console games a possibility, thus raising the device’s appeal to core gamers.
So far Apple has yet to show much enthusiasm in courting core gamers, so it remains to be seen if they are even interested in taking this first (and incredibly easy) step. Until we see more on this, we’ll have to stick with touchscreen games that don’t require controllers.
Source: GamesIndustry International