SteelSeries Stratus XL - A console quality MFI controller (iOS & Mac)

When the Made for iPhone (MFI) Program was released I had high expectations for gaming controllers coming to the market. After numerous rushed controllers were designed as a case for iPhone 5 only I felt there was no controller that cut it for me. An exciting new wireless controller by SteelSeries took my eye, a premium wireless controller for iPhone, iPad, iPod & Mac! I couldn't wait to try it out.

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SteelSeries Stratus XL Controller Box
The SteelSeries Stratus XL is a gamepad that wirelessly connects to your iDevice (OS 7.0 or later) or Mac OSX by Bluetooth 2.1. A gamepad has never been required to play games on the App Store but playing MFI games with one is a worthy investment. With more and more console quality games being remastered for iDevices such as GTA, Bioshock, Bastion as well as top quality iOS games including RealRacing 3 and Dead Trigger 2 an iOS controller has never been more important.
SteelSeries Stratus XL Controller
The controller design itself closely resembles the Xbox:One controller, the size and weight of the controller is of console quality which is a big plus. On the front the Stratus XL has a D-pad, 2x analogue thumb sticks, 4x buttons (XYAB) & Start button. Turning it over it has 2x trigger buttons, 2x bumper buttons, power toggle & Bluetooth pairing button. The 2x AA batteries are included which is a nice touch, the battery life is supposed to be 40+ hours battery, I have played with the controller for 3 hours now and the battery meter is still at 5 bars which is impressive.

Pairing to the iPad was particularly easy, once I had turned on Bluetooth on my iPad I pressed the pair button on the controller and I was ready to play 5 seconds later. I have noticed that my iPad remembers the paired Stratus XL, each time I powered up my controller mid game I can immediately start playing with it which is really great. There was no observable latency between the input on the controller and action in the game, you can see this in my recorded video below.
SteelSeries Stratus XL playing GTA on iPad
I was surprised by the lack of setup, in each MFI game I tried I did not have to go to the Settings and select the gamepad as default nor assign buttons. In my opinion the controller is perfect for taking on holiday and is much more comfortable for longer game sessions than tapping & smudging the iPad screen.

The multiple device compatibility is a real strength of the Stratus XL, I have also paired the controller to my Mac and it worked perfected without driver downloads or additional setup.
SteelSeries Stratus XL playing GTA on Mac
The SteelSeries Stratus XL is a top quality wireless controller that is compatible with both iDevices and Mac OSX. With an ever increasing number of MFI compatible games, treat your iDevice or Mac as though it is a portable console and play wherever you go.


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