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This article was published on September 4, 2015

Airconsole beat Apple to making great multiplayer mobile games

Airconsole beat Apple to making great multiplayer mobile games
Owen Williams
Story by

Owen Williams

Former TNW employee

Owen was a reporter for TNW based in Amsterdam, now a full-time freelance writer and consultant helping technology companies make their word Owen was a reporter for TNW based in Amsterdam, now a full-time freelance writer and consultant helping technology companies make their words friendlier. In his spare time he codes, writes newsletters and cycles around the city.

There are plenty of phone cases that turn your smartphone into a game controller, but how about an app that lets you play games in your computer’s Web browser?

Airconsole is a website that syncs your smartphone as a controller for the collection of Web games it offers. All you need to do to turn your phone into a controller for your browser is load the site, type in a code and your phone is paired.

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It just works!

It gets really cool when you start playing multiplayer games — all of the games on Airconsole’s site support multiple phones (up to 8 on some games) — so it’s a dead-easy way to get gaming with a bunch of friends with nothing more than a computer and your phones.

Each game has its own unique controller layout on the iPhone which can be confusing at first, but it’s magical to be able to get into a game with zero friction — it feels like something Apple should have done already.

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Trying a two player game on Airconsole

We tried it here at The Next Web HQ in Amsterdam and it worked on a variety of phones made by different manufacturers, with a bunch of people and within a few seconds of loading it up we were all playing together.

You can even play NES games by uploading ROMs you’ve got on your computer into your browser and Airconsole just makes them work. The company is also making it possible for developers to take advantage of its new service, offering an API to build your own games.

Airconsole is very compelling, addictive way for quickly throwing together a game when you’re at home or the office and just want to play something with friends — it doesn’t require extra hardware, app downloads or setup to play.

It’s rumored Apple will introduce a new Apple TV with gaming support at its September event next week, but Airconsole beat them to it, for free.

➤ Airconsole

GIF credit: Mic Wright/The Next Web

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