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GameSir Galileo G8 review: My iPhone 15 Pro is now the best Nintendo Switch

Published Feb 22nd, 2024 9:28AM EST
GameSir Galileo G8 review
José Adorno for BGR

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Galileo G8

Rating: 4.5 Stars

GameSir Galileo G8 is the perfect gaming controller to take advantage of the powerful A18 Pro chip available on the iPhone 15 Pro.


  • Beautiful design inspired on SNES
  • Extra USB-C port for pass-through charging
  • Detachable faceplates for customization


  • Not the thinnest controller to carry around
  • It might give you cramps with extended gameplay
  • Lacks software customization for iPhone users (blame Apple)
Buy FromList PriceSale Price
$79.99$71.99See It
GameSir$79.99$71.99See It

I always fancied a gaming controller for my iPhone. Even though I’m not much of a gamer, I knew the powerful processor of my smartphone could be the best videogame I’d ever need. Then, last November, GameSir released its Galileo G8 gaming controller, which is compatible with many Android phones and Apple’s latest iPhone 15 lineup. With a USB-C port, this gaming controller marks a new era for Apple’s iPhones in the gaming world.

In this review, I’ll share the perks of GameSir Galileo G8, its limitations, and what I discover as a mobile gamer.

GameSir Galileo G8 specs

Item model number‎G8 Galileo
Hardware Platform‎iOS, Android
Operating System‎iOS, Android
Item Weight‎1.19 pounds
Product Dimensions‎8.54 x 4.21 x 2.13 inches
Item Dimensions LxWxH‎8.54 x 4.21 x 2.13 inches
Power Source‎Corded Electric
Date First Available‎November 15, 2023

Galileo G8’s design is an ode to SNES

GameSir Galileo G8 reminds me of SNES
GameSir Galileo G8 reminds me of SNES Image source: José Adorno for BGR

I know there are a ton of gaming controllers on the market. Still, as a Nintendo fan, I love it when companies reference the Big N. This GameSir gaming controller is very simple and yet beautiful. With a gray finish, it has purple buttons that remind me of SNES. The joystick and gamepad are darker, and the part I put on the iPhone has a rubber finish to avoid scratches.

The USB-C port goes up and down so you can attach your iPhone or Android device more easily. Still, I always need to pay attention and add my iPhone. Even though I’m using the iPhone 15 Pro, the GameSir Galiley G8 can be expanded to fit it. I also tried the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 with it, and it worked perfectly. I also don’t think there’s a phone that can be used here.

Galileo G8 offers a pass-through USB-C charging port + 3.5 mm audio jack. Image source: José Adorno for BGR

It also features a pass-through charging USB-C port and a 3.5 mm audio jack, allowing unlimited gameplay while immersing yourself in it.

I also like that it features magnetic detachable faceplates, so you can try different joysticks to understand which is more comfortable for extended usage periods. The gaming controller also offers customizable buttons to trigger in-game actions, although I haven’t used them.

How does it feel to play and carry this controller around?

GameSir Galileo G8 review with iPhone 15 ProImage source: José Adorno for BGR

One of the main factors when choosing a gaming controller is its portability and how it feels after long usage periods. The GameSir Galileo G8 is a bulkier gaming controller, but I think this is a bonus. Although it might not be the thinnest device to put on your bag and carry around, it gives the perfect grip to play with it.

Since I have big hands, I think it works just fine for around an hour of gameplay; after that, it starts giving me cramps. I don’t think it’s the controller’s fault, as I also have the same experience while playing Nintendo Switch out of the dock.

Image source: José Adorno for BGR

Over the years, I discovered that the best options for extended gameplay are Nintendo’s Pro Controller or Sony’s Dual Shock controller.

The buttons are solid, the joysticks are responsible, and I played many, many hours of Genshin Impact with Galileo G8.

Charging while playing is a bonus

I think it’s important to highlight how great it is to have this pass-through USB-C port at my service. Since the iPhone 15 Pro doesn’t have the best battery life available, and I always want to make sure to play the games with the highest specs, I know the battery will drain FAST.

With the USB-C port, I can keep my iPhone 15 charged, and even though it also gets hot, I think the device’s design helps it not retain heat. Although it doesn’t help dissipate since it lacks a fan, it also doesn’t worsen everything.

GameSir Galileo G8Image source: José Adorno for BGR

I once had trouble charging my iPhone while playing when it was close to 1% of battery life. Apple’s 20W charger wasn’t enough. To ensure the pass-through charger actually works, I’d instead use my MacBook’s power brick.

The 3.5 mm headphone jack is a plus, but I’d instead use my AirPods Pro or AirPods Max for better surround experience during my gameplay.

Finding the right games might be tough

When I got GameSir Galileo G8 for review, my main thought was: Man, I’m going to play so much Pokémon Unite with it. But guess what? It doesn’t support gaming controllers. At first, I was furious because if it works on Nintendo Switch, why is it so hard to make it available for third-party gaming controllers on the iPhone? As it seems, a lot.

On my Galaxy Z Flip 5, I tried to hack the system to emulate buttons with the gaming controller. But it was a pain and didn’t work properly. Then, I gave it a try with Resident Evil games, which I briefly tested for BGR, but I fell in love with the easiness of playing Genshin Impact with it.

Image source: José Adorno for BGR

I love playing this gotcha game on my PlayStation 5, but being able to go to another room and continue my gameplay almost makes me feel like I’m using a powerful Nintendo Switch around. It’s just so handy.

Still, it would be best to see what games you have available and which support a third-party gaming controller. For example, Alto’s Adventure games support it, but, honestly, those games weren’t made for anything except touching controls. Apple Arcade also has some nice options if you are a subscriber.

That said, I almost envy European users who will be able to enjoy Fortnite again on their phones, as it must be nice to play this battle royale with a proper gaming controller.

Android perks that everyone should have

Although I have a Samsung phone, I don’t like gaming on Z Flip 5. I think it’s a shame that there isn’t an iOS counterpoint GameSir app due to Apple’s limitations.

Still, Android users can benefit from an exclusive app and buttons that get more functionality, such as PS mode for controller-supported games and PS Remote Play, Android mode for controller-supported games, and G-Touch mode for touchscreen-only games.

It’s the little tricks that make this gaming controller even more enticing for mobile gamers. In addition, you should know it supports Xbox Game Pass, Steam Link, Moonlight, and PS Remote Play. So nice.

Price and conclusion

Image source: José Adorno for BGR

GameSir Galileo G8 costs $79.99, but if you find it available online, you might get it for a better price. Its value is similar to what a videogame controller would cost, except that you’re bringing a more immersive experience to your mobile phone.

While you could use your PS5 controller, having this as a Nintendo Switch-like device makes the experience much better. I think Galileo G8 will make me enjoy my iPhone 15 Pro more while helping me test upcoming mobile titles.

As an Apple user, I know iPhones have such potential thanks to their software optimization and powerful hardware. I love that I can finally take advantage of its true potential thanks to Galileo G8.

There are tons of game controllers around, but if you like its design, USB-C extra port, and bulkiness, this is the mobile controller you should get.

José Adorno Tech News Reporter

José is a Tech News Reporter at BGR. He has previously covered Apple and iPhone news for 9to5Mac, and was a producer and web editor for Latin America broadcaster TV Globo. He is based out of Brazil.