iCade 8-bitty mobile gaming controller now shipping

Posted by Shane McGlaun

ThinkGeek first began showcasing its iCade 8-bitty mobile gaming controller earlier this year.

The device - which looks a lot like an old-school original Nintendo controller - crossed the FCC back in September and is now shipping.

The iCade can best be described as a small rectangular device that supports Bluetooth connectivity and draws power from a pair of AAA batteries.

The controller boasts a total of 8 buttons, including four on the right, a start button, a select button, two shoulder buttons and a D-pad for directional control. The controller is also equipped with a sensor that automatically shuts off the device when it isn't being used to preserve battery life.

The controller is a miniaturized version of ThinkGeek's slick iCade arcade-style cabinet for the iPad. The 8-bitty is compatible with all iCade video games, including the Atari Greatest Hits iPad app, which is packaged with over 100 available classic Atari games. The app sells for $14.99 or individual game packs with three titles  can each be purchased for one dollar.

As expected, the controller is compatible with the iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, Android devices, as well as most other mobile devices that feature Bluetooth support.

Fortunately, the device was designed using an open platform - allowing devs to code apps that support the controller without paying licensing fees. The 8-bitty controller is currently shipping for $29.99.