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 IPHONE, IPAD HARDWARE REVIEW
MOGA Rebel controller for iPhone and iPad
Anarchy reigns
 
 Handset: MOGA REBEL 
 Manufacturer: PowerA 
 Price: £59 
by Mark Brown
MOGA made the very first MFi controller. But that debut device, the MOGA Ace Power, was a bit of a shambles. It broke down a lot, the buttons were unresponsive, the thumb sticks were weird, and it's already outdated as it can't hold the iPhone 6.

Now MOGA is back for a second try with the all new MOGA Rebel and it's a completely different story.

For starters, this one works over Bluetooth instead of plugging directly into your phone via the Lightning port, which means it works on iPad (and Mac) as well.

Set up is super easy. You just press the sync button and the pad will appear in the Bluetooth settings on your device. Tap the MOGA Rebel button and you're hooked up. Once that's done it will automatically pair back up in the future.

MOGA Rebel

The design has changed too. It's modelled closely on the design of the Xbox 360 pad, and that's no bad thing. It fits snugly into your hands, the buttons are where they should be, and your thumbs land on the thumb sticks with all the familiarity of slipping into your favourite shoes .

It's not up to the same production standards of Microsoft's controller, though. It feels a little cheap and plasticky, with an overall flimsy feel that bellies that £60 / $80 price tag.

Luckily, the buttons themselves are up to snuff and are far more responsive this time around. The face and shoulder buttons respond to your press every time and the thumbsticks feel great with delicate dead zones that aid in those all-important zombie head shots.

Even the d-pad, which apparently no one bar Nintendo can get right, is acceptable for playing retro games or platformers.

MOGA Rebel

The Rebel's got a springy clip that can hold your iPhone and it extends far enough to snap in the iPhone 6 Plus. Also, this thing has your iPhone gripped like a vice so you don't need to worry about your precious smartphone flying out.

You do need to worry about RSI, though. Sadly, the clip only snaps into one position and it's not far enough back. That results in an awkward viewing angle that will kill either your wrists or your neck in the majority of sitting positions.

I've also pinched my finger in the clip mechanism twice but I am a terrible moron so I won't let that affect the final score.

The battery life is great and there's a proper on / off switch so you can be safe in the knowledge that the controller isn't sapping power. It also turns off automatically if you forget to flip the switch.

It can't charge your phone like the ACE Power, of course, and it also has a MOGA logo on the back that lights up which is a pointless drain on your battery.

MOGA Rebel

Otherwise, the MOGA Rebel is a fantastic device. It feels great, the buttons are completely responsive, and it vastly improves the experience of playing games like Bioshock and Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas on your phone.

It does, however, have some stiff competition and the new SteelSeries controller which we'll be reviewing soon is very similar but has a much higher production quality for the same price. If I had to choose, I'd go with that one.

But if you demand an iPhone clip (which makes it dramatically easier to use, awkward angle aside), the MOGA Rebel might be a safer bet.
 

Reviewer photo
Mark Brown 24 November 2014
MOGA is back with a dramatic new pad that's improved in almost every way. But that cheap build quality lets it down
  MOGA REBEL CONTROLLER FOR IPHONE AND IPAD
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 [READERS' RATING] N/A 
Specs Size16 x 11 x 4cm
Battery680mAh rechargeable battery
Controls/buttonsFour face buttons, two analogue sticks, four shoulder buttons, d-pad, and pause, Bluetooth sync, and battery check buttons
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