It’s easy for a product like this to get lost in my growing collection as I test out more and more Android controllers. Visually, it doesn’t stand out all that much, but PowerA’s Moga XP7-X Plus offers a few key features that set it apart from the rest. As far as testing goes, I always look for a comfortable hold with solid performance. The Moga XP7-X Plus mostly delivers on those fronts, but lacks in a few areas worth noting.
Anyone looking to play their favorite Xbox Game Pass games on Android will definitely want a controller like this. Just be aware about all of its pros and cons before purchasing.
Moga XP7-X Plus: Price and availability
PowerA’s Moga XP7-X Plus controller released in July 2022, and is available through its own online storefront and on Amazon for $100. Though retailers like Best Buy and Walmart tend to carry other PowerA peripherals, the XP7-X Plus is not available through either store at the moment.
Its $100 price tag puts it inline with — or even slightly more expensive than — other competing mobile controllers on the market. The model only comes in black and is officially licensed by Xbox, with an Xbox button on the controller.
Moga XP7-X Plus: What I like
It may seem like such an odd detail to call out, but it’s worth mentioning that the textured, concave rubber design and tactile clicks of its thumbsticks feel much better than other controllers I’ve tested. Considering that thumbsticks are some of the most used controls and integral in practically every game available, their design is important. On more than one occasion, I found myself wishing I could remove the thumbsticks and put them on other controllers I use frequently. They’re that good.
The wireless charging bank also means you won’t have to worry about your phone dying out any time soon. Those worried about it draining the controller battery don’t need to, either, because the power bank can be switched on and off at the press of a button. You only need to use it when you want to. There’s even an easy to read LED indicator on the front of the controller that displays its battery life.
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With what feels like a spring-loaded mechanism, the XP7-X Plus can stretch to fit devices up to 7.13 inches. The fit may not be perfect depending on the phone case you use because of its overhanging lip that secures the phone, but the fact that it accommodates for phone cases is a plus that many Bluetooth controllers benefit from.
Should you want to use a wired connection rather than Bluetooth, it supports micro-USB, too. The downside is that with the location of most USB ports on phones means you won’t be able to do this with the controller cradling the phone in the middle as it should. It would need to be in table top mode.
For those who don’t care for creating a mini Nintendo Switch of sorts with their phone in between the controls, its included tabletop stand adds an extra way to play. The stand slots right into where your phone would on the controller when not in use, making it perfectly transportable without worry. When you’re ready to use it, it’s as simple as sliding it out and putting your phone or tablet on it.
This is another thing I’ve said countless times, but I’ll say it again: Grips that mimic a traditional Xbox or PlayStation controller are just better than those that look like Joy-Cons. They’re more ergonomic, they’re easier to hold for longer periods of time, and they generally just look better. I have yet to find a person who says otherwise. Of course it’s always a matter of opinion, but this is something where the consensus of the community usually falls in favor of your standard console controllers.
The advanced gaming buttons on the back also serve as another way to benefit competitive players. These buttons can be remapped directly from the controller, and are excellent ways to increase your effectiveness depending on the game you’re playing.
Moga XP7-X Plus: What needs work
Before even playing any games, I always hold a new controller in my hands just to get a feel for it. Part of this process also means I’m pressing all of the buttons and triggers, and I was pretty disappointed by what I felt this time around. While I think the textured thumbsticks are some of the best I’ve ever used and the face buttons are tactile, the triggers feel soft and squishy; not at all what they should be for playing shooters like Apex Legends Mobile.
It takes more effort to press them repeatedly than it does on my other mobile controllers, often causing fatigue if I’m rapidly firing a weapon that isn’t automatic. I wouldn’t go so far as to call the triggers terrible — because they are definitely functional — but they leave a lot to be desired.
While the two advanced gaming buttons on the back of the grips could effectively be remapped to function like the triggers, it’s unrealistic to expect everyone to adapt to a new control style like that when the default options aren’t good enough. Those buttons should be there to complement the others, not replace them.
Aside from the triggers, I wasn’t thoroughly impressed by the stand it comes with to play on a table or desk either. Without my phone case, it felt too easy for my phone to slide out of place if I bumped into it, likely due to the material and size. My phone case has a larger rubber backing, creating more friction and weight to keep it still.
Moga XP7-X Plus: The competition
With the mobile gaming market booming, players tend to be spoiled for choice when it comes to controllers. Gamesir makes some excellent Android controllers like the Gamesir X3, featuring built-in cooling fan on the back for those worried about their phones overheating. I’ve spent quite a lot of time with the X3 and found it to be a big improvement over the X2 model, going so far as to include an adjustable USB-C connector to offer some wiggle room when inserting a phone. Its thumbsticks are still way too small for most people to use comfortable, but thankfully it comes with thumbstick covers that solve the issue.
If you don’t like the Nintendo Switch-inspired design and want something a bit more traditional, with controller grips like an Xbox controller, there’s the Nacon MG-X Pro; which is honestly one of the best I’ve come across in my testing. It has a build similar to the Moga XP7-X Plus, but its triggers feel more effectively and tactile. Though it lacks the remappable advanced gaming buttons on the back that more competitive players may use, the MG-X Pro excels where it counts most.
PowerA also offers another Moga model, the XP5-X Plus, which is effectively a standard Xbox controller with a phone grip attached to it. This will give players the closest experience to using a proper console controller — because in effect, it is. While you can basically get the same set up using an Xbox or DualSense controller with a good phone clip, this one also has the added bonus of housing an integrated power bank, and an extra set of advanced gaming buttons on the back.
Moga XP7-X Plus: Should you buy it?
You should buy this if:
- You prefer Bluetooth connections, as these controllers tend to support a wider variety of phones
- You want a separate stand that sits on your desk or table
- You’d use the built-in power bank
- You want a grip that mimics an Xbox or DualSense controller
You shouldn’t buy this if:
- You primarily play shooter games that use the triggers
- You want a smaller controller that takes up less space for travel
- You want a USB-C connection for reliability
- You’re not going to use the advanced gaming buttons on the back
It’s gotten to a point where I’ve tested out so many mobile controllers that small differentiating factors make a huge difference. Upon first glance, the Moga XP7-X Plus looks pretty similar to the Nacon MG-X Pro, but its textured thumbsticks, separate phone stand, integrated battery pack, and advanced gaming buttons set it apart.
Unfortunately, a big part of the mobile gaming experience lies within the triggers, and they just feel too soft and mushy on the XP7-X Plus for me to comfortably recommend it to people who play shooters.
Aside from that, and its lack of a dedicated screenshot button — which I’ve grown to love on the Gamesir X3 — it makes for a great mobile controller. The phone stand allows it to be versatile, even if it doesn’t always feel the most secure in that position. If you’re in the market for a mobile controller and aren’t too keen on the other options out there, I’d give this one a shot.
The Moga XP7-X Plus has a lot going for it with its integrated power bank, excellent thumbsticks, and a separate stand for phones, but the mushy triggers don’t do it any favors, and hurt an otherwise great product.