Apple product owners have noticed that the latest iOS and tvOS update has added support for some of Nintendo’s best controllers.
If you own one of the Nintendo Switch’s retro controllers, namely the Super Nintendo Entertainment System and the N64 pads, you can now use them on compatible iOS devices and services. That includes the Apple Arcade gaming subscription service.
The discovery was first shared on Twitter, where developer Steve Troughton-Smith confirmed that the Super Nintendo wireless pad worked over a Bluetooth connection. It has now been confirmed that the N64 controller also works. It is likely that both the NES and Sega Genesis/Mega Drive controllers will also work from the iOS 16.1 update.
It’s also not the first time Apple has added support for Nintendo’s controllers to its devices. At WWDC 2022, Apple also confirmed support for the excellent Nintendo Switch Pro Controller and (albeit less excellent) Joy-Con controllers.
Nice, iOS/tvOS 16.1 supports the official BT/USB-C Super Nintendo controller for the Switch 😄 I don’t have the N64 or NES versions to test with, but I believe they are supported now too 🎮 pic.twitter .com/mfkTIHpXunOctober 24, 2022
From the looks of it, Nintendo doesn’t seem to mind that the range of Nintendo Switch controllers is usable on third-party platforms. Earlier this year, for example, Nintendo’s lineup of retro controllers got Steam support, giving PC players even more options to play the best Steam games.
Nintendo’s retro wireless pads are also suitable for the kinds of games you’ll find on Apple Arcade. Since it largely houses smaller, easy-to-digest games, the library is perfect for the simple button layouts (and solid build quality) of Nintendo’s historic controllers.
It’s updates like this that give Nintendo’s retro controllers more value now than they had at launch. Since it was created as a nice novelty for Nintendo Switch Online subscribers, I had no idea that they would be so well received that other companies would offer support for them.
Still, it’s always great to see, especially since other controllers like the DualSense are also used on Steam and iOS. Hopefully PC support will be fully implemented for Nintendo’s pads in the future, and I’d love to see adoption on Android devices as well.