The latest Backbone One smartphone gamepad is $20 off for Father’s Day

The BackBone One with a clamped-in phone sitting against a wall.
The newer second-gen Backbone One looks much like the original (pictured here). | Photo by Cameron Faulkner / The Verge

Apple talked about big-budget games coming to the iPhone at its recent WWDC 2024 keynote, but if you choose to play upcoming titles like Resident Evil 7 on your phone, you might want something better than touch controls — something much better. Thankfully, the second-gen Backbone One controller is currently discounted to $79.99 during Backbone’s Father’s Day sale, saving you $20 on your model of choice through June 16th. You can pick from the standard ABXY button layout with a USB-C port (Amazon / Best Buy / Backbone), the same style with the older iPhone Lightning connector (Amazon / Backbone), a white PlayStation layout with USB-C (Amazon / Best Buy / Backbone), or the PlayStation Edition with Lightning (Amazon / Backbone).

The second-gen Backbone One makes some iterative improvements on the original model we liked so much. It can now accommodate more phone sizes, even with some cases left on, and the D-pad and face buttons have stepped up build quality. But many of the excellent features that made the original so good are still here, like passthrough charging, a 3.5mm headphone jack, and not having to fuss with any wireless Bluetooth connections.

In addition to playing games directly on your phone, the Backbone also works great for cloud streaming or in-home remote play off of a PlayStation 5 or Xbox Series X / S console — allowing you to relinquish the TV to the rest of the family while still squeezing in a game session.

A few more game and non-game deals for you today

  • Some of the Nintendo Switch’s best-of games are on sale at Best Buy for their usual best-of prices. This includes Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, and Super Mario Odyssey, each at $39.99 ($20 off), and Kirby and the Forgotten Land for $44.99 ($15 off). It’s wild to think some of these games are over seven years old, but each is still worth getting around to if you’ve been ignoring them all this time. I’m crossing my fingers so hard that next year’s Switch successor will be backward compatible with all of them.
  • The Ultimate Ears Megaboom 3 in blue, black, and purple are all selling for around $147 (about $53 off) at Amazon. The roughly nine-inch-tall Bluetooth speaker has a 20-hour battery life and some boomy bass (if you like that sort of thing). It’s great for pool parties and summer beach trips since it’s waterproof and even floats. Just don’t forget to pack a Micro USB charger on longer trips because this speaker originally came out in 2018 and still has the annoying old port.
  • One of our favorite reading lights, the Glocusent book light, is selling for $17.99 ($15 off) at Amazon. The flexible light hangs around your neck and has three color temperature settings for adapting to the ambient lighting even at night and six brightness levels. Plus, it recharges via USB-C when its claimed 80 hours of battery life have depleted.

Source: The Verge The latest Backbone One smartphone gamepad is off for Father’s Day