Top positive review
Better than iPega but not as comfortable
Reviewed in the United States on July 18, 2013
Controllers for the iPhone basically only work when they are emulating the iCade, or the dodgy blutrol touchscreen emulator. The iCade has one digital joystick and 8 buttons. I got the iPega, which inexplicably only emulates 6 buttons in spite of the iPega having a d-pad, two joysticks and 8 buttons.
The Gametel supports all 8 buttons, making it a step above the iPega in that regard. However, the iPega is more comfortable to hold. On the iPega, you can use either the d-pad or the left joystick, and they are both fairly comfortable. The Gametel's d-pad is very flat and resistant to motion. The shoulder buttons are also tricky to press when the phone is mounted. It's still infinitely better than a touchscreen.
I tried both the Gametel and the iPega with a Gameboy Advance emulator. Either the emulator or the controllers have a problem with protecting against rapid button presses. When pressing a button on the iCade, the emulator would detect it as though I had rapidly pressed the button two or three times in the millisecond that I pushed it even though the button was not a turbo button. This problem was not nearly as bad on the Gametel, though it did exist.
Speaking of phone mounts, the Gametel and iPega have the exact same phone mount mechanism. The Gametel uses a smoother, squishier material, unlike the iPega which uses plastic. The phone mount is great. You lift up the top part and then push the phone up against it. The bottom clamp then opens automatically, letting you slide the phone in without any fumbling. Then the top part closes back down once you let it go and the phone stays in place firmly. To take the phone out you just push up on the phone and slide it out from the bottom once it's away from the clamp, so getting it in and out is a quick and easy process.
The controller and mount are also shaped to support the phone from the back for both the Gametel and iPega so it is not uncomfortable to hold the phone up. The iControlPad has the issue of requiring you to hold the bottom part of the phone because the iCP doesn't support the phone from the back at all and the shoulder buttons are on the lower back, making it really unpleasant to hold up when the phone is attached.
Suffice to say both the iPega and Gametel are good options for different reasons. The iPega is the better option if you have an Android phone because it has two joysticks and is more comfortable. I have an iPhone, which means the controllers only work in iCade mode. The Gametel does that better due to using all 8 buttons instead of 6.