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iControlPad goes into production


I'm not so convinced any more that the iPhone really needs buttons or a d-pad (Rolando makes do with just touchscreen controls, and even a game like Tatomic uses "buttons" well on the touchscreen), but especially for retro gaming, they'll really help. So it's probably good news that the iControlPad, which we posted as a concept a while ago, is now real. The picture above is the final prototype before production (though the final product will apparently be black rather than white).

Of course time (including a little playtime) will tell whether it works or not -- Engadget thinks they need some official Apple support, but all they'll really need is developer support in the App Store (they say they already have strong support from the jailbreak folks). And of course that depends on lots of things: how it sells out of the gate, how easy it is to implement the buttons, and whether there's a need for extra controls on the iPhone as well. We'll keep an eye on this one -- it'll end up just another silly iPod accessory, or a must-have add-on for iPhone gamers.

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