Microsoft’s push for game streaming through Project xCloud is getting all the headlines, but another side to their push for console gaming wherever you are is Xbox Console Streaming direct from your Xbox One at home. As announced back at E3, Console Streaming is now in preview in the UK and US to Android users.
To get access to Console Streaming, you must be a part of the Xbox Insider programme (in the Alpha or Alpha-Skip-Ahead testing rings) and meet some basic connection requirements – at least 4.75Mbps upload and with less than 125ms latency. You need a phone or tablet running Android 6.0 with Bluetooth 4.0 and a Bluetooth-enabled Xbox One controller.
The eventual intention is that Console Streaming exists alongside Project xCloud, letting you choose whether to stream from your home console or Microsoft’s upcoming streaming platform. Once Console Streaming is fully released, you’ll be able to play anything on your console, whether Xbox One, a backward compatible title, something you own outright, or have access to through Xbox Game Pass. During this preview phase, however, you will only be able to stream native Xbox One games.
Here’s a bullet point run down of the requirements from Microsoft:
- You need to be an Xbox Insider in the US and UK with a console enrolled in the Alpha or Alpha-Skip-Ahead rings to participate in the preview.
- We will expand the preview to more rings and regions in the future. If you’re interested in joining the Xbox Insider program, you can find more information here.
- To participate in the Xbox Console Streaming preview, Insiders need:
- A phone or tablet running Android 6.0 or higher, with Bluetooth 4.0.
- A Bluetooth-enabled Xbox One Wireless Controller.
- While not required, we recommend a controller mount for those gamers testing on a phone.
- Download the Xbox Game Streaming (Preview) app from the Google Play Store.
- The app will guide you through setting up Xbox Console Streaming on your enrolled Xbox One, including performing a test to ensure your home network, console and controller are ready for Xbox Console Streaming:
- The network test ensures your console’s network connection and setup meet the minimum requirements:
- NAT type: Open or Moderate
- Upstream bandwidth: At least 4.75 Mbps required, 9 Mbps preferred
- Network latency: 125 ms or less required, 60 ms or less preferred
- Console settings: Power setting must be Instant-on
Also currently in testing is Project xCloud itself, with the preview available in the US, UK and South Korea ahead of a planned expansion across the world. To take part in that, head to xbox.com/gamestreaming and pop your name in the preview hat. Again, you will need to have an Android smartphone or tablet, and a healthy 5Ghz Wi-Fi or 10Mbps mobile connection, with partnerships with T-Mobile in the US and Vodafone in the UK to ensure the lowest latency possible.
The public Project xCloud preview will start with a small selection of first party games feature Halo 5: Guardians, Gears 5, Sea of Thieves, and finally Killer Instinct to show off the service’s low latency credentials. If you already have and play these games, your progress and profile will all carry on over, flowing back and forth between whatever device you want to play on.