Gear VR doesn't come with a controller, and that's an issue. Sure, there are some great games and apps that work with just swipes and taps on the headset's built-in D-pad, but the best experiences, like Minecraft and John Carmack's "favorite Gear VR game," Omega Agent, require a controller. Yeah, there are plenty of Bluetooth controllers available, but there’s no ubiquitous, "sane default" option right now. Maybe Microsoft can help.
Microsoft has a new Xbox Wireless Controller, which ships with the Xbox One S and has built-in Bluetooth for PC compatibility. Surprise: it can connect to Android phones, too! To enable this remarkable synergy, Microsoft has just released a software update for the controller, which can be administered from your Xbox One or Windows 10 PC. You'll also need the latest version of the Gear VR edition of Minecraft, because that's the only game that supports the controller so far. Microsoft promises to be working on support for "all controller-supported Gear VR games" and asks us to keep an eye out for news in the coming months. We've waited this long for a reasonable default!
Oh, and if you’re not sure if you have one of the new Bluetooth controllers, Microsoft has provided a helpful can-you-spot-the-difference diagram:
Microsoft and Facebook-owned Oculus have been very buddy-buddy over the past couple years: the Oculus Rift comes bundled with an Xbox One Controller (sadly, not the new Bluetooth one), and an Oculus partnership feels likely for Microsoft's upcoming Xbox Scorpio, although there's no confirmation of that just yet.