HomeReviewsAccessory reviewsNACON MG-X Pro Made for iPhone Controller Review

NACON MG-X Pro Made for iPhone Controller Review


iPhone users have had a duff old time of it with the Xbox. Cloud gaming and remote play was previously the province of Android phones and tablets, and Apple had seemingly been left behind. 

But no longer! Praise the Spencers and Cooks, as we now have both cloud gaming and remote play accessible on iPhone, thanks to the Xbox app. But while we technically have the ability to play Hades and Grounded on our itsy little phones, the obvious issues rear their heads. These games were built, ground up, for controllers rather than touch-screen controls, and bluetooth-connecting a controller to a phone can be awkward and counter-intuitive. 

Those were the two main options until now. NACON have waved their magic wand again, bringing the popular NACON MG-X Pro to the iPhone. Suddenly, mobile Xbox gaming feels possible and comfortable. 

NACON MG-X Pro iPhone Review 1

First, let’s rattle through compatibility. As long as you have an iPhone anywhere from the 6s all the way up to the iPhone 13 Pro Max, including all variants, minis, SEs and Maxes, then you are golden. Your phone will fit snugly into the extending bracket of the MG-X without an issue. It should be noted that iPads are not compatible (and look ridiculous in the bracket anyway), while the iPod Touch (7th Generation) actually does work. Not that we have one. 

Unboxing the MG-X Pro, there’s relatively little in there, which is no bad thing. It’s all part of the no-fuss setup that makes it such a great option. You get several one-sheet instruction manuals (the full manual is online), a USB to USB-C connector for charging, and the MG-X unit itself. 

The unit is about the weight of a conventional official controller, just stretched to be the width of a Switch. With a phone inside, it slightly tips over the weight of a controller, but only slightly, so you should feel at home. We’d say it’s about the weight of a chunk of Cathedral City.

Build-wise, it’s fab. There’s a raised, matte-finish on the underside of the unit which catches the odd bit of Dorito dust, but otherwise keeps the controller well-gripped and communicates a sense of quality. It feels not too dissimilar to an Xbox controller in grip shape (with slightly more angular ‘wings’ that nudge it towards the shape of a PS5 controller).

NACON MG-X Pro iPhone Review 2

There are a few caveats with the buttons, but they’re largely subjective and won’t impact on things greatly. We’re not sure why the Home, Guide and Select buttons are presented in the orientation they are here. They have different icons, and the Home button is lower than the Select, which confused us. See what we mean about minor grumbles? Also, the X, Y, B and A buttons provide more resistance than your average pad, and are a little noisy on compress. The triggers, too, have a bit of resistance and spring back faster than we expected. But they all disappear into the subconscious after a few hours’ play, so we’d stop short of calling them issues. 

Slotting your phone in is dead easy. You pull the two halves apart, and the sliding tray expands to the size of your phone. Our lowly iPhone 11 fit perfectly, snuggling into a notched area within the tray. Once in, it felt stable, and didn’t wiggle even when we were jostling around playing shoot ’em ups. 

Straight out of the box, the unit has a charge, so don’t worry about gifting this over Christmas. The giftee will be able to play immediately. Setup, too, is an absolute cinch. You will need to connect the unit via Bluetooth, and we did it in seconds. Turning on the MG-X Pro, we were able to find it on our Bluetooth list immediately, and connection was swift. From there, your phone and MG-X Pro are as one. 

You’ll need to download the Xbox app from the Apple Store, and the issues with the app are well documented. Remote Play and Cloud gaming has a habit of dropping periodically, meaning that you might have to wait or restart to return to a game. That’s on the app of course, and nothing to do with the MG-X Pro. The app itself is also a bit of a ballache to navigate, and it desperately needs a quick-find for games that are available for the Cloud. But we’ll stow away our criticisms, and focus on the controller.

NACON MG-X Pro iPhone Review 3

We reviewed several games remotely on the MG-X Pro, including Panda Punch, Crime Secrets: Crimson Lily and Broken Universe – Tower Defense, and they all worked an absolute treat on the MG-X Pro. While the screen was undeniably small on our iPhone 11, making the hidden object scenes difficult, there was nothing at all wrong with the unit itself. We soon grew used to the unexpected resistances of some buttons, and gaming on the MG-X Pro became second-nature. Battery life too is great: we got a solid five hours out of it with each charge.

Let’s not sell it short: we fell in love with the NACON MG-X Pro Made for iPhone controller. Living in a house where the television gets hijacked by Bluey, Peppa Pig and occasional Just Dance sessions, the MG-X Pro became a godsend. We could curl up in a corner armchair and have console experiences on our humble iPhone, all with a controller that feels reminiscent of an Xbox controller. Slotting the phone in was simple, the connection swift, and it was all playable out of the box. We could go from 0 to Sonic Frontiers in under sixty-seconds. Nothing short of miraculous.

So, if you’re considering a gift for an Xbox and Apple fan who keeps getting hustled off the telly, or wants gaming on the go, look no further than the NACON MG-X Pro Made for iPhone controller.

Massive thanks go out to NACON for providing the MG-X Pro Made for iPhone controller for review. If you wish to purchase this controller you can grab it right now for around £120 from NACON direct.

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