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How to use remote play on the Xbox Series X and S

With Xbox Game Pass moving to the cloud and an ever-evolving ecosystem of services outside of the consoles, it’s clear that Microsoft is betting on remote play with the Xbox Series X and Series S. Like the Xbox One, you can stream your Xbox Series X or S to an Android or iOS device and play your games wherever you are.

It doesn’t matter if you want to grind extra levels in Yakuza: Like a Dragon on the train or see if you can survive Horde in Gears 5 while lying in bed, our guide on how to use remote play on Xbox Series X will get you set up.

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How to use remote play on the Xbox Series X and S

xbox series x

The Xbox Series X and S support remote play, but that’s just one of many remote features the consoles support. You can remote play no matter what network you’re on, but you’ll need to have a compatible Android or iOS device (Android 6 or later; iOS 10 or later) that’s connected to the same network as your Xbox Series X to get started.

Once they’re connected to the same network, follow these steps:

  1. Follow Settings > Devices & Connections > Remote Features. 
  2. Check Enable Remote Features box.
  3. Set Power Mode to Instant-On
  4. Download the Xbox app on a compatible Android or iOS device.
  5. Sign in to the app using the same account on your Xbox Series X.
  6. Tap the Streaming icon in the top right corner.
  7. Select Set Up a Console.
  8. Select Add an Existing Console.
  9. Follow the prompts to complete setup.

Step 1: Getting your console ready for remote play

Microsoft claims that you only need 5GHz Wi-Fi or mobile data exceeding 10Mbps download to remote play, but that doesn’t tell the full story. On your destination device — your Android or iOS device — that’s the internet connection you need. Your console, on the other hand, should be connected to your local network using an Ethernet cable. It doesn’t matter how fast your internet is. Simply put, Wi-Fi is too inconsistent for the host — your console — to stream to your destination device.

Once your console is hard-wired, press the Xbox button to open the guide, then navigate to the Profile tab and select Settings. Then, follow Devices & Connections > Remote features and make sure Enable Remote Features is checked. Also set your Power Mode to Instant-On and choose who can connect to your Xbox using the Xbox App Preferences setting. With that done, select Test Remote Play to make sure your setup is sufficient.

Step 2: Connect your Xbox Series X

With remote play enabled, download the Xbox app from Google Play or the App Store, then sign in to your account using the same profile on your Xbox Series X or S. In the top right corner, you’ll find the Streaming button next to the Notifications button (it looks like an Xbox One with some lines around it). Tap it, then follow Set Up a Console Add an Existing Console. As long as your device and Xbox are connected to the same network and you’re signed into the same account, the app will automatically find and connect your Xbox.

Step 3: Clip and connect your controller

You need a controller that supports Bluetooth to remote play on your Xbox Series X — unless you have something like the Razer Kishi, which is also supported. Your Xbox Series X or Series S controller will work, but also certain Xbox One controllers. Check the plastic around the Xbox button on your Xbox One controller. If it’s a separate piece, the controller doesn’t support Bluetooth. If the plastic on the controller face is a single piece that surrounds the logo, it supports Bluetooth (see the image above for an Xbox One controller that supports Bluetooth).

To connect your controller, turn on Bluetooth on your device and make sure it’s searching for new devices. Then, turn on your controller by pressing the Xbox button and hold down the Pair button — on the back, next to the controller’s USB port — until the Xbox logo starts flashing rapidly on your controller. Shortly after, you’ll see your controller show up on your Android or iOS device. Select it, and pairing should finish.

Finally, clip your controller to your device using a phone clip. There are a lot of these floating around different retailers, but the best is the PowerA MOGA Gaming Clip. It’s the only licensed Xbox phone clip, and unlike similar options, features two separate points of rotation, allowing you to position your phone exactly how you want. Plus, it’s the same price as many of the unlicensed options.

You’re now ready to remote play on your Xbox Series X, but just playing your games remotely isn’t all the Xbox app can do. Additionally, you can purchase new games, browse Game Pass, and even install games, all remotely.

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Jacob Roach
Senior Staff Writer, Computing
Jacob Roach is a writer covering computing and gaming at Digital Trends. After realizing Crysis wouldn't run on a laptop, he…
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