We knew that Backbone was gearing up to launch a version of its mobile gaming controller to work on Android devices, with preorders opening as early as July. And today, the company has officially announced that the Backbone One for Android is available now.
Released in 2020, the Backbone One is a bone-shaped mobile controller that attaches directly to your smartphone. Unlike some controllers that require a Bluetooth connection, the Backbone One connects to your phone by plugging it into the applicable connector (Lightning or USB-C) on the right side of the controller — a concept similar to that of attaching Joy-Cons to your Nintendo Switch.
Of course, this is not the first time Backbone One offered Android support. Last year, the company launched Backbone+, a subscription service that not only includes improved game recording features, but allows users the option to use the controller to play games on tablets like the iPad as well as Android devices, but only if you had the applicable USB cable to connect the two devices together.
Backbone One Review
The release of Backbone for Android comes months after Razer released a revision of their Kishi mobile gaming controller that looks similar to the Backbone One. In my review, I noted that the Razer Kishi V2 was “a good alternative for Android users that want a Backbone-like accessory for mobile and cloud gaming,” but some of my biggest criticisms were the lack of a headphone jack, the lack of native support for Call of Duty: Mobile, and the sluggish performance in the Kishi V2’s companion app, Nexus.
In comparison, the Backbone One for Android offers a headphone jack, like its iOS counterpart. IGN can also confirm that the Backbone for Android offers native controller support for Call of Duty: Mobile. Another distinction is that the Kisi V2 includes multiple adapters in the packaging that fit into the device to ensure the controller is future-proofed for newer phones. Although Backbone does not offer the same thing, the company did make an adapter last year to address the camera bump issue with the iPhone 13 Pro smartphones.
As noted on Backbone’s official website, the Android version of the controller is compatible with most Android phones. While the listing does not currently mention the recently-released Pixel 7 series, Backbone told IGN that the Backbone One for Android does support the latest generation of Pixel smartphones.
The Backbone One for Android, just like the iOS version, costs $99.99 and is currently available on Backbone’s official website and Best Buy. Sadly, Android users can only choose black as its color option, with the PlayStation-themed variant exclusive to iOS users at the moment. The listing notes that shipping is slated to begin in December, but if you preordered one before November 1, you will receive it before the end of the month.
Taylor is the Associate Tech Editor at IGN. You can follow her on Twitter @TayNixster.