It’s game on for Apple users as a new update brings support for the Nintendo classic controllers for the SNES and N64 to the Mac, iPhone, and iPad.


As part of the latest update for macOS Ventura and iPadOS 16, Apple has now added support for Nintendo’s line of classic controllers on Mac, iPhone, and iPad devices. As Apple continues to grow its library of available games on Apple Arcade, this expanded controller support will let players enjoy some of the best titles in mobile gaming using their favorite controllers from Nintendo’s past.


Available for purchase exclusively by members of the Nintendo Switch Online service, Nintendo’s line of Classic Controllers includes full-size replicas of the NES, SNES, N64, and Sega Genesis controllers designed to work over Bluetooth or USB-C with modern gaming platforms. Ranging in price from $29.99 for a single SNES controller to $59.99 for a pair of original NES controllers, the exclusive devices were a hit with some Nintendo fans looking for the best way to play classic Nintendo titles or just bring a bit of nostalgia to their gaming in general. In addition to now working with macOS and iPadOS devices the Nintendo classic controllers also work with Valve’s Steam Deck, making them a great choice for emulated gaming on the go.

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In a Tweet posted by game and app developer Steve Troughton-Smith, a short GIF shows the wireless SNES controller being used to control an Apple TV device. Support for the Nintendo controllers on Apple devices comes following a recent update to macOS and iPadOS that added support for numerous Bluetooth and USB controllers, giving gamers on Apple devices a bit more choice when it comes to how to play. Although some users had been able to add support for the classic Nintendo controllers using hardware add-ons in the past, gamers will now be able to connect their controllers directly to their Apple devices without needing to purchase additional hardware.

Fans of both Nintendo and Apple responding to the tweet were excited by the newly-added support for the classic controllers, with one Apple employee chiming in to confirm the new feature and state that they have gamers covered. While many respondents were excited about the new functionality, others decried the inability to download emulators through the AppStore in order to play classic Nintendo games with their classic controllers. A thriving emulation scene has developed on Android devices in recent years while users of Apple devices like the new iPad remain limited to only installing apps approved by Apple.

Despite being historically reluctant to support gaming on their devices, Apple has made inroads with gamers in recent years through moves like bringing Apple Music to Xbox. Whether streaming music on consoles and improved controller support is enough to draw gamers to Apple’s ecosystem remains to be seen, but it’s clear that the Cupertino company isn’t ready to write off gamers just yet.

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