You don’t have to have an Xbox to play the games you love. Game Pass members can stream games to their phones or laptops using Xbox Cloud Gaming. The Xbox Series X and Series S are expensive, so if you don’t want to spend several hundred dollars on a next-generation console, Microsoft’s Xbox Cloud Gaming can bring top games to your phone or computer, as long as you meet a few requirements first.
Sign up for a Game Pass Ultimate
At the moment, Xbox Cloud Gaming is not a service that can be used independently. You need Xbox Game Pass Ultimate if you want to stream Xbox games. The Ultimate plan costs $14.99 a month and offers access to the console and PC game library services, Xbox Live Gold, EA Play, free in-game substance for some games, and cloud gaming.
Which Games May I Play?
Even though Xbox Game Pass has a lot of games, not all of them can be played in the cloud. For example, Alan Wake’s American Nightmare and Crysis can only be installed on a console or PC and cannot be played online. Some EA Play games also need extra authentication that Android can’t do.
Still, Xbox fans will find that first-party exclusives like Halo, Gears of War, and Forza are well represented, with multiple titles ready to stream. There are also games like Doom Eternal, Fallout 76, Skyrim, The Outer Worlds, Sea of Thieves, Wasteland 3, etc., that Xbox Game Studios make.
This doesn’t even mention the many third-party games you can stream with Game Pass. Cloud gaming lets you play games like Batman: Arkham Knight, Hades, Nier: Automata, and Resident Evil 7: Biohazard.
Grab a Gamepad
If you don’t want to use touch controls on a few games, the only way to play is with a gamepad, so make sure you have one on hand. We have suggestions for Xbox Cloud Gaming controllers that clip right onto your phone, but any Bluetooth or USB controller will work.
You can connect a Nintendo Switch Pro Controller, PS5 DualSense Controller, or Xbox Controller to a PC if you already have one for another console. You can also use a DualShock 4 if you still have one lying around. The Bluetooth settings on your phone can also connect these controllers to your phone.
Look at your Internet connection
Microsoft’s game-streaming feature only needs a data connection of at least 10Mbps down over Wi-Fi or LTE. This isn’t a very high standard. But to get the most reliable performance, you probably want to go higher. We have guides on how to find out how fast your internet is and a few tips on making your Wi-Fi signal stronger. These are the best ISPs for gaming in 2022 if you want to upgrade your home internet.
How to Launch an Android Game
It would help if you had Android 6.0 or later and the Game Pass platform from the Google Play Store to play games on the internet on your Android device. Make sure you get the version with the green logo. The version with the white logo is the beta version. If you open the app and click on the Cloud tab on the home page, you can see a list of all the games that work with Xbox Cloud Gaming. You can choose a game and tap “Play” to start it.
Look for games that have a finger icon. This means that the controls are made for touch screens. If you don’t have a Bluetooth controller, you will need to connect it to the phone before Play can start. Games with touch controls show an Xbox controller on the screen so that you can use fake face buttons, triggers, and control sticks just like you would with a traditional game controller.
Every game has its out of controls. Icons sometimes show what you do in the game, like a fist in Banjo-Kazooie or a gas pedal in Dirt 5. If you prefer a simple button layout without custom icons, tap the symbol that looks like a controller, and choose More Options to turn on or off simplified controls. You may also find that the controls on the screen can sometimes hide what’s on it.
If you tap the icon that looks like a controller, you can change how big and where these buttons are. Touch-screen controls won’t always be the best way to do things, but they work well when there is no other choice. The app works well with your Xbox account, so any progress you make in a game will be saved on all of your devices.
That means you can pick up where you left off in the app if you start playing on your new console. You can also start a new game in the cloud and continue it on a console or PC. When you’re ready to pick up a game again, all the progress you’ve saved will be in the “Jump back in” section on the webpage. Just hit Play to start playing again right away.
How to Start an iPhone Game
Microsoft came up with a way to get around Apple’s App Store fees that requires a few steps. First, go to the Xbox Cloud Gaming website on your iOS device. Chrome, Edge, and Safari are all browsers that can be used. You won’t be able to play games right from the website with Safari. Tap the game you want to play and then tap “Get Ready to Play.” You will be told to add Xbox Cloud Gaming to your home screen. Tap the “Share” button and tap “Add to Home Screen.”
Let the web app download, open it, pick a title, and tap Play. If the game can only be played with a gamepad, you will need to connect one before it starts. If you turn your phone on its side, the screen will be too small for touch-screen games. You will need to either connect a controller or change how the screen is set up.
Have you locked the phone’s orientation? Open the Control Center and tap the lock icon to make the screen touch-friendly. Then, if you turn the phone horizontally, the game should change to match. A controller that is being emulated will also show up on its own. The iOS version of Chrome doesn’t need all of this to play games, but it doesn’t seem to support touch controls, so keep your controller handy.
How to Launch a PC Game
People with a PC running Windows 10 or Windows 11 can play games through Xbox Cloud Gaming by downloading the Xbox app (not the Xbox Console Companion app) from the Windows Store. Make sure that Game Pass is chosen at the top of the screen when the Xbox app is open. Click the tab labeled “Cloud Gaming” to see a list of all the games you can stream through the app.
Click Controller to access Bluetooth settings and communicate a controller to the computer before choosing a game. Until you do this, games won’t work. You can also click Network to check the status of your network connection and make sure you are on the right one. You can change choices for audio, ease of access, and more by clicking Settings.
Click on a game you want to play and click the Play button next to it. The “Jump back in” header keeps your save data when you start streaming a game. Your Xbox account is linked to these saves, so your game progress is saved across devices. Click the game’s title and hit Play when you’re ready to play again. Your game will start right away.