Most Android games are designed to be used with touchscreen controls. But I suspect the surge in Android-based gaming devices with physical controls could lead to a new market for games that make use of gamepad buttons.
NVIDIA, Ouya, and Archos have all announced Android-based systems with buttons or controllers. And that could be good news for fans of cheap handheld gaming consoles from Chinese device maker JXD, which has been releasing portable Android devices for gamers for a little while.
The company’s latest is a 7 inch tablet with gaming buttons on the sides called the JXD S7300, and it’s up for pre-order from Willgoo for $150.
The tablet is expected to ship in late January or early February, and customers who pre-order will get an 8GB memory card and a pouch along with the tablet.
JXD’s new tablet features a 1.5 GHz Amlogic dual core processor, ARM Mali 400 graphics, 1GB of RAM, 8GB of built-in storage, and Android 4.1 Jelly Bean software.
It has a 1024 x 600 pixel display with a 5-point capacitive touchscreen which you can use for touch-based games or other Android apps. But it also has joysticks, directional pads, shoulder buttons, and other buttons on the sides of the device.
The tablet has a microSD card slot, HDMI output, and a front-facing VGA camera. According to the Willgoo listing, the tablet also comes pre-rooted, with SuperUser access… which is kind of an unusual selling point. On the one hand, it’s nice to have root access to your device — but on the other, if it comes pre-rooted, you kind of have to wonder if it’s running any spyware or other malicious software from the factory.
It’s also much easier to royally mess up your device if it’s rooted and you don’t know your way around the root file system and settings.