Gamevice for iPhone & iPad review: simulated Nintendo Switch

AppleInsider is supported by its audience and may earn commission as an Amazon Associate and affiliate partner on qualifying purchases. These affiliate partnerships do not influence our editorial content.

Gamevice makes controllers that clip onto an iPhone or iPad to transform them into portable gaming consoles, but their clunky design leaves space for improvement.

Gamevice was among the first companies to create dedicated controllers for mobile devices, and their approach was incredibly novel. The vice-like controllers grip each side of the iPhone or iPad and make them more akin to a Sony PSP or Nintendo Switch.

The recent 2022 redesign brought the controllers’ design language and features up to date, but they remain nearly identical to previous models. The iPhone controller will feel familiar to anyone who has used a Razer Kishi controller because it was built with Gamevice as a partner.

The iPad controller is unique since it is one of the only “vice” controllers built for that size class. Since it uses a Lightning port for the interface, it is only compatible with Apple’s 10.2-inch iPad and older devices like the 10.5-inch iPad Pro.

Gamevice controller design

The Gamevice controllers are very similar despite the significant size difference. The iPad controller is a blown-up version of the iPhone controller, but the analog sticks are in different positions.

Gamevice for iPhone design

The Gamevice for iPhone wraps around the outside edges of an iPhone to grip the device. One side has a Lightning connector to interface with the iPhone, and the other must be pulled onto the side with some elastic resistance.

Gamevice for iPhone securely attaches via the Lightning port

Gamevice for iPhone securely attaches via the Lightning port

The iPhone feels secure within the Gamevice controller, but devices smaller than the iPhone 13 Pro Max may need an adapter to ensure the device fits properly.

When the controller isn’t in use, it folds into a small square shape and is secured by a panel that clicks into place. Unlike the Backbone One controller, the separator that keeps the controller sides connected is a flimsy bit of elastic.

The Gamevice for iPhone folds up into a compact shape for storage

The Gamevice for iPhone folds up into a compact shape for storage