THIS WEEK'S SPONSOR:

Kolide

The Fleet Visibility Solution for Mac, Windows, and Linux to Help You Securely Scale Your Business


Apple Adds Nintendo Online Classic Controller Support to the iPhone, iPad, Mac, and Apple TV

It seems that Apple slipped a little extra controller support into yesterday’s updates to iOS, iPadOS, macOS, and tvOS: Nintendo Online classic controller support.

Nintendo sells wireless versions of its classic NES, SNES, and Nintendo 64 controllers, plus the Sega Genesis controller for use with its Nintendo Online Service for Switch. The controllers are a fun way to play the games from those old systems that are offered as part of Nintendo Online and its Expansion Pack add-on service. Yesterday, Steve Troughton-Smith tweeted that the classic SNES controller works with iOS and tvOS 16.1:

Sure enough, it does, along with iPadOS 16.1 and macOS Ventura. With each OS, the controller shows up as ‘SNES Controller’ in Bluetooth settings when in pairing mode. Federico has confirmed that the Nintendo 64 controller works, too, but neither of us has an NES or Sega Genesis controller to test.

The Nintendo 64 controller paired with the new iPad.

The Nintendo 64 controller paired with the new iPad.

This isn’t the first time Nintendo’s wireless versions of classic controllers have been adapted for use beyond the Switch. Steam added support for the controllers in July.

Pairing my SNES wireless controller to my iPhone 14 Pro Max.

Pairing my SNES wireless controller to my iPhone 14 Pro Max.

Apple has gradually added deeper and deeper support for third-party controllers over the past few years. The latest official additions, which were first announced at WWDC, are the Nintendo Joy-Con and Pro Controller. Some third-party controllers like the 8BitDO SN30 Pro+ that emulates other controllers can be paired with Apple devices, too, but they show up as generic controllers.

I love many of the retro games available on Apple’s platforms that are inspired by Nintendo’s early systems. What’s great about the support for the wireless controllers is that now they can be played with the controllers of the systems that inspired them. The Nintendo 64 controller is perpetually out of stock, but if you’re interested in picking up any of the others, they are available on Nintendo’s online store.

Unlock More with Club MacStories

Founded in 2015, Club MacStories has delivered exclusive content every week for over six years.

In that time, members have enjoyed nearly 400 weekly and monthly newsletters packed with more of your favorite MacStories writing as well as Club-only podcasts, eBooks, discounts on apps, icons, and services. Join today, and you’ll get everything new that we publish every week, plus access to our entire archive of back issues and downloadable perks.

The Club expanded in 2021 with Club MacStories+ and Club Premier. Club MacStories+ members enjoy even more exclusive stories, a vibrant Discord community, a rotating roster of app discounts, and more. And, with Club Premier, you get everything we offer at every Club level plus an extended, ad-free version of our podcast AppStories that is delivered early each week in high-bitrate audio.

Choose the Club plan that’s right for you:

  • Club MacStories: Weekly and monthly newsletters via email and the web that are brimming with app collections, tips, automation workflows, longform writing, a Club-only podcast, periodic giveaways, and more;
  • Club MacStories+: Everything that Club MacStories offers, plus exclusive content like Federico’s Automation Academy and John’s Macintosh Desktop Experience, a powerful web app for searching and exploring over 6 years of content and creating custom RSS feeds of Club content, an active Discord community, and a rotating collection of discounts, and more;
  • Club Premier: Everything in from our other plans and AppStories+, an extended version of our flagship podcast that’s delivered early, ad-free, and in high-bitrate audio.