Best phone controller 2023: Our top picks for mobile gaming

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Finding the best phone controller for mobile gaming can be a slightly confusing landscape to navigate at times, but we're here to point you in the right direction.

If you're playing games like Fortnite, PUBG Mobile, COD Mobile and more, then having a phone controller is a great way of getting the most out of the game... and maybe even a few more wins.

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Getting the best gaming phone is one thing, but many of us have opted for more mainstream smartphones for everyday usage, and with these controllers you can literally transform your 'everyday' phone into a portable gaming console.

At the moment, there are loads of options out there, ranging from actual gamepads to accessories you can attach to either side of your phone. 

We've selected several phone controllers that we think stand out from the crowd, based on specs, general reviews, and features they offer.

Before you go diving in, as always, make sure to check compatibility with operating systems to ensure your controller works the way it was meant to, and stick around, as we've also highlighted some upcoming phone controllers you may want to hold out for...

Let's dive in!

Best phone controller 

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Best phone controller for competitive gamers - Razer Raiju

Best Phone Controller for competitive gaming
Credit: Razer
Brand: Razer | Colour: Black | Connectivity: Wireless/ USB-C | Compatibility: Android, IOS, PS4 | Weight: 417 grams

The Razer Raiju is an impressive controller in its own right and boasts some impressive features when it comes to playing some of the best Android games.

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It connects via Bluetooth or USB-C cable and has a built-in dock, which you simply need to slide out and mount your device to.

Read more: Best Android racing games

Razer always seems to go above and beyond with extras, so unsurprisingly there's a companion app to go with the gamepad.

You'll be able to adjust sensitivity and more using this, making the Razer Raiju controller ideally suited to die-hard mobile gamers, and easily compatible with one of the best mid-range phones on the market.

Best phone controller add-on - Razer Kishi

Best Phone Controller Add-On
Credit: Razer
Brand: Razer | Colour: Black | Connectivity: USB-C / Lightning | Compatibility: Android / IOS | Weight: 134 grams

Razer makes the list again, but this time for their Razer Kishi, which snaps onto your Android or IOS phone to transform it into a 'Switch-Esq style of the device.

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Clickable analogue sticks, D-Pad, and shoulder buttons all feature, which cover all the bases for a healthy selection of gaming genres.

Read More: Best phone for COD mobile

This controller can be stretched to fit a wide variety of phones, but as we mentioned earlier, make sure to check that your phone will fit nicely into the groove before committing. 

Thanks to this function, you'll also be able to push the controller into a more compact form, making it ideal for taking on the go.

You can even connect the Razer Kishi to a charging cable and continue playing if you're running out of juice!

Best phone controller for iPhone gamers - SteelSeries Nimbus+

Best Phone Controller for Iphone gamers
Brand: SteelSeries | Colour: Black | Connectivity: Wireless | Compatibility: IOS / Mac / Apple TV | Weight: 243 grams

The SteelSeries Nimbus+ has some eye-catching specs to its name, especially when it comes to battery life, which is a staggering 50+ hours.

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When it comes to the controller itself, it's pretty down to business and includes all the buttons, sticks, and triggers you'd want when playing on mobile. Thanks to its position of the left analogue stick, it may even suit players who are more familiar with PlayStation controllers, in contrast to the Razer Raiju with its over-the-D-pad position. 

Read More: Best phone under 500

Easily attach the selected device using the Nimbus+ mount and even use it with an iPad and Apple TV! 

If you're looking for a great alternative from SteelSeries, you can always check out the recently released Stratus+ too.

Best phone controller Sony - PS5 DualSense

PS5 DualSense Controller
Brand: Sony | Colour: White, Midnight Black, Cosmic Red, Starlight Blue, Galactic Purple, Nova Pink Connectivity: Bluetooth, USB | Compatibility: PS5, PC, Mobile | Weight: 427 grams

The DualSense is one of the best controllers for PS5 and can be paired with phones and used to play games that support controller play.

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Read More: PS5 DualSense Vs PS4 DualShock 4: Which is best?

However, understandably, next-gen features such as adaptive triggers and haptic feedback are not yet available for mobile gaming.

A good trick to have up your sleeve!

Best all-round phone controller - Backbone One Mobile Gaming Controller

Backbone One Mobile Gaming Controller
Credit: Backbone
Brand: Backbone Labs Inc | Colour: Black | Connectivity: Lightning connector | Compatibility: IOS | Weight: 138 grams

Another standout phone controller is the Backbone One.

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This controller connects to your iPhone's lightning port and its adjustable size means that it should work with all the latest iPhones.

Read More: Best phone for PUBG

This controller boasts responsive triggers, tactile buttons, and clickable thumbsticks to help bring you the ultimate mobile gaming experience.

If you're an iPhone user, the Backbone One could be worth checking out.

Best phone controller HyperX - HyperX Clutch Controller

HyperX Clutch Controller
Credit: HyperX

The HyperX Clutch controller was announced at CES 2022 and is the first of its kind from the company.

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The HyperX Clutch boasts an ergonomic design, up to 19 hours of battery life and works with both PC and Android devices.

Read More: Best controller for Warzone

This controller also comes with a Bluetooth receiver, allowing you to play on PC or Android wirelessly with an ultra-fast 2.4GHz connection.

That's all from us right now, but make sure to check back in soon as we'll be updating this article to best reflect all the exciting new releases in the world of mobile gaming.

Best phone controller GameSir - GameSir X3 Type-C

GameSir X3 Type-C
Credit: GameSir

GameSir debuted the X3 Type-C Cooled Mobile Gaming Controller in 2022.

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As the name suggests, the controller features a built-in cooling system to allow you to game for longer without your phone overheating.

Read More: Best gaming phones

Frequently Asked Questions

While on the lookout for the best phone controller, you might encounter these questions...

What controllers can you connect to your phone?

Typically, phone controllers can be paired with your phone via Bluetooth or they are wired. Depending on what phone you have, you can choose between wired and wireless controllers.

Can I play mobile games with a controller?

Yes, you can play mobile games using a controller. Many games like COD Mobile support controller use - and these titles will give you a better gaming experience.