Otterbox, one of the biggest names in phone and tablet cases, has teamed up with Microsoft to create a new line of clips, cases, and grips aimed at making the most of mobile gaming services like Xbox Game Streaming and Apple Arcade.
Otterbox has been making rugged cases for mobile devices since there have been mobile phones and tablets in need of protection. Now it’s extending that protection to Xbox One and X/S controllers. While the focus is mainly on mobile gaming, one does not need to be into streaming Xbox games to their phone to appreciate the $US40 ($52) Easy Grip Controller Shell. It’s a hard plastic frame that snaps over your Xbox One or Xbox Series X/S controller, leaving room to access the ports and battery bay. The grooves on the grip are meant to allow air to flow through, which is supposed to act as a sort of air conditioning, reducing sweat generation. The case comes with two sets of grips, one with three grooves on each side and another with eight.
I’ve been playing with the pictured “Dreamscape” colorway for a couple of days, and while I cannot say whether or not my hands feel cooler, my controller certainly feels more protected. I only wish I had gotten it in the black “Dark Web” or purple “Galactic Dream” colorways.
On the mobile gaming side of things, there’s the new $US30 ($39) Mobile Gaming Clip, which is a device that clips onto your controller to hold your phone. These things have been around for years now. Otterbox’s version affixes to the controller easily without interfering with any important buttons or ports. On the back of the clip there’s a single quick lever that locks and unlocks the hinges, making changing phone angle quick and easy. It’s certainly one of the better clips I’ve tried.
When not in use, your Xbox controller and clip can fit neatly inside the $US45 ($58) Gaming Carry Case. It’s a fancy black clamshell zipper case with enough room for a controller, the gaming clip, extra batteries, cables, or whatever else the mobile gaming person might need to game mobile-y. It’s pretty damn fancy. It’s even got a pass-through for charging cables, and there’s a little fold-out stand on the top that’ll hold a phone in place.
The company is also offering a $US55 ($71) Easy Grip Gaming Case, which has grooves on the inside to help keep an iPhone and eventually Android devices from overheating during gaming sessions, which is a thing that happens. Most impressive of the lot is the $US50 ($65) Gaming Glass Privacy Guard, a horizontally-oriented privacy screen that keeps prying eyes from being able to view your phone display.
All of this gaming gear will be available for preorder at the Otterbox gaming website on January 25, with shipping starting mid-February.