Apple’s latest device updates have made retro and retro-inspired games more authentic by adding support for classic Nintendo controllers.
Those with devices running iOS 16.1, tvOS 16.1, iPad iOS 16.1, and macOS Ventura can enjoy a host of new features on the best iPhones, best iPads, and best MacBooks and Macs. But an update we didn’t know would be coming will be welcomed by anyone who loves playing classic-style games through Apple Arcade and the App Store.
That’s because after the update, you’ll be able to wirelessly connect your NES, SNES, and N64 Bluetooth Classic controllers to your Apple device of choice (via MacStories (opens in new tab)).
These Nintendo Switch compatible controller versions of Nintendo’s past were created to give Nintendo Switch Online subscribers a stronger sense of nostalgia when playing retro games through Nintendo Online, and now you too can bring that experience to your games for iPhone and iPad.
Even better, these controllers aren’t just for gaming. If you’re tired of scrolling through menus with the boring old Apple TV remote, you can swap it out for the much quirkier N64 controller – and hopefully this gadget trident will also be harder to miss.
If you prefer a more modern feel to your gaming devices, don’t worry. You can choose to connect the Nintendo Switch Joy-Cons, the Xbox Adaptive Controller, the PS5 DualSense, and even the Xbox Series X controller, among many others, to your Apple device.
How to Connect a Nintendo Classic Controller to Your Apple Device
If you already have one of the Nintendo Classic wireless controllers at home or you are buying one especially to use with your Apple devices, you may want to know how to connect it to your Apple device.
The first thing you need to do is make sure your controller is charged, your Apple device is turned on, and Bluetooth is also on.
On an iPhone or iPad you need to access your settings, then the Bluetooth settings menu, While on a Mac you’ll want to go to your Apple menu, click System Preferences and then Bluetooth. Then you need to pick up your controller and press the sync button, after which it should appear in the list of devices your Apple gadget can connect to; select it and your retro device will be ready for you to play the best iPhone games in style.
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On an Apple TV the process is a little different. You must go to device settings, then remotes and devices, then select Bluetooth. Here you should see an option called How to Pair Game Controllers – select this and follow the onscreen instructions.
If you’d rather use a dedicated gaming machine than play games on your iPhone 14 or Apple TV 4K, why not check out our picks for the best gaming console you can buy today?