A physical iOS/Android-controller keychain coming to Kickstarter soon (updated: It’s live)

Update: The Kickstarter for the Impulse Controller is live here.

The Impulse Controller for iPhone, iPad, and Android could finally make it convenient to carry around a physical joystick for your mobile device.

Smartphone gaming is great, but I’m pretty sure the on-screen controls common in so many titles will cause me some serious arthritis later in life. My hands cramp up after just minutes with touchscreen buttons and directional pads. I could carry around one of those Bluetooth controllers, but who needs the extra bulk in their pockets?

This is where the Impulse Controller comes in:

This tiny piece of hardware is kind of a technical marvel:

  • It’s 2.7-inches wide and only .6-inches thick.
  • The lithium-polymer battery is fully rechargeable.
  • The charge supports 10 hours of playtime and 30 days of standby time.
  • Gamers can use it in either orientation to suit right-handed and left-handed gamers.
  • If you lose your keys, an app on your phone turns the controller into a remote key finder.
  • Two controllers can work on a single device for multiplayer gaming.
  • The Impulse Controller can work as a remote camera trigger.
  • The buttons and direction stick can operate the video and audio controls on your media.
  • Designers built in a loop for attaching the device to a set of keys.

To me, the keychain size alone makes a device like this enticing. Pile the key-finding feature on top of that (mine are perpetually lost), and it becomes a no-brainer.

The device’s developers say the final price won’t be under $40, but the Kickstarter (which is scheduled to go live at 8 a.m. PDT)  has a special $25 price reserved for the first 100 contributors. After that, on-the-go gamers can get one of the controllers with a commitment to the $30 reward tier.

Other reward tiers have personalized versions of the hardware, T-shirts, and more.

The project has a $49,999 goal. We’ll update with a link to the Kickstarter when it is available.

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