Google Stadia controller with phone mounted

Whether you’re into hiking, gaming, photography, or drone piloting — getting started and making the right equipment decisions can be a serious investment. But sometimes it’s hard to know where to get started, especially if you’re new to the hobby. That’s were AA Essentials comes in. This new Android Authority series features different experts from our team who discuss their recommendations for the gear you need to optimize your experience.

Phones these days are more powerful than ever, and nowhere is that power felt more acutely than gaming. Whether you have aspirations of becoming a professional PUBG Mobile player or just want to take your mobile gaming hobby to the next level, there are all kinds of accessories that allow you to elevate the experience.

Read also: 15 best Android games available right now!

For those unfamiliar with the state of mobile gaming, great mobile games like COD Mobile, PUBG Mobile, and even Minecraft have support for controllers that make it way more fun and accurate to play on the go. Apart from controllers, there are mobile gaming accessories like headphones, power banks, phone clips, and more that will make you forget about the days of needing to sit down at a desk to game.

Without further ado, here are the mobile gaming accessories the Android Authority recommends.

Gaming phones

The first and most obviously essential item for any mobile gamer is a powerful smartphone. So what should you look for? Generally you want the latest and greatest processor paired with a healthy amount of RAM and enough storage space for games with large file sizes. Other nice-to-haves are big, high refresh rate screens and a large battery with quick charging capabilities.

While most current flagship phones offer more than enough power to blast through games, certain specialized gaming phones have features designed with gamers in mind. These include 90 or 120Hz screens, active cooling, faster memory, huge batteries, and hardware additions like shoulder buttons. Typically this comes with other compromises (usually weak camera performance), but there are gaming models for all price ranges.

Read also: The best phones for gaming

Of course, you don’t need a gaming phone to get top-notch performance and, if you’re willing to pay for it, you can get a phone without any compromises. Here are our top picks, in order of price: the Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Plus, Asus ROG Phone 2, LG G8X ThinQ, and Nubia Red Magic 3S.

Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Plus Whats in the Box
Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Plus
The all-around choice
The Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Plus truly has it all: great specs, a huge screen, and a great triple camera setup. Plus, the included S-Pen stylus is perfect for mobile games that require precision tapping or swiping.
The LG G8X SNES emulator.
LG G8X ThinQ
Two screens for the price of one
While it isn’t exactly a gaming phone, the LG G8X ThinQ has one feature that makes it perfect for mobile gaming: two screens. Like a Nintendo DS, it folds open to reveal two screens, and has a variety of features to support retro gaming and more.

Mobile gamepads

Once you’ve got a capable device, it’s time to look at mobile gamepads. There are a plethora of options, including standard bluetooth controllers like the Xbox One controller and mobile-specific designs like the Razer Junglecat.

Read also: Best bluetooth gaming controllers for Android, PC, and more!

It’s worth noting that some accessories are specific to certain phones. The best example of this is the Asus ROG Phone 2, which has a ton of accessories that enhance the mobile gaming experience. These include Nintendo Switch-style gamepads, a Nintendo DS-style second screen, active cooling, and more.

If you don’t have an Asus ROG Phone 2, there are still plenty of options. Here are a few of our favorite mobile gamepads: Razer Raiju, SteelSeries Stratus Duo, Razer Junglecat, and 8BITDO SN30.

Mobile gaming headphones

The next major mobile gaming accessory you should pick up is a decent set of headphones. With the headphone jack quickly going the way of the dodo, you may be better off investing in bluetooth headphones or USB-C headphones. We’ll stick to bluetooth and wireless options here (although most have 3.5mm connectors as well), as USB-C headphones still don’t deliver adequate performance.

We’ve also included both headsets (with a focus on the microphone) and standard headphones. If you’re playing multiplayer games like PUBG Mobile or Call of Duty Mobile, you’ll want a good headset to communicate with your teammates. If you’re more of a single-player gamer, picking up a great set of headphones will really help build immersion — even on a loud bus or train.

An image of the Sony WH-1000XM3 Wireless Noise-Canceling Headphones.
Sony WH-1000XM3
The ANC champ
For gaming in noisy places, investing in headphones with active noise cancelling is more than worth it. Sony's WH-1000XM3 headphones are the best on the market, and they're perfect for gaming, music, podcasts, or literally anything else you can throw at them.
$239.00 at Amazon
Save $110.99

Power banks

Gaming is one of the most taxing tasks you can do on your smartphone, and running out of juice can cut your gaming sessions short if you don’t have a plug nearby. Considering mobile gaming is, well, mobile, the odds of not having a charger plugged in while gaming is pretty high.

Read also: The best 10,000mAh power banks you can buy

This is why you should always carry around a power bank to gain a quick boost in battery life. These come in all shapes and sizes (including huge ones for laptops), but here are a few that won’t take up too much space in your bag (or take a big chunk out of your wallet).

Other mobile gaming accessories

There are all kinds of other accessories that can be useful when gaming on mobile devices. One obvious example is a battery pack case, which can extend the life of your battery similar to a power bank. Which model you need depends on your phone, but some brands are better than others.

Apart from that, here are a few extra products that can enhance your mobile gaming experience.

That’s it for our list of mobile gaming accessories that every serious gamer needs! Got any more recommendations? Let us know in the comments below!