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How to Use a Laptop as a Monitor for Your Xbox Series X|S


Using your Windows laptop as a screen for your Xbox Series X|S is simple. And it’s an ideal solution if you don’t have a dedicated monitor, or your laptop’s screen is higher quality than your existing monitor.

If you connect via Remote Play, this also has the advantage of allowing you to play Xbox games anywhere you like. The only caveat being that your laptop must be able to connect to your console via the internet.

What Is Remote Play?

Remote Play lets you use your Xbox console with any eligible device. This includes PCs, Android, and iOS devices; see how to play Xbox games on your iPhone as an example. You’ll be able to use your console exactly as you would normally. However, rather than cloud gaming, you will be connecting directly to your Xbox.

It’s worth being aware of the differences between Xbox Remote Play and Xbox Cloud Gaming. When opening your Xbox or the Xbox app for PC, you will see an option titled Cloud Gaming. This requires an Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscription and allows you to play Xbox games on the cloud. Unlike Remote Play, this does not require you to own an Xbox console.

How to Enable Remote Play on Your Xbox Series X|S

While Remote Play can always be used as long as you have a wireless connection to your Xbox, you’ll get the best performance by ensuring you meet the following requirements:

  • A laptop updated to Windows 10 or Windows 11 (v.1903+).
  • 5Ghz Wi-Fi.
  • Less than 60ms Network latency.
  • Upload bandwidth of more than 9Mbps.
  • A wired network connection.
  • Xbox Sleep mode set to Standby.


If your laptop and Xbox are both on the same network, you won’t need to worry too much about the network settings. However, if you are playing on a different network, you may experience noticeable network lag if you drop too far below these settings.

How to Set Up Your Xbox for Remote Play

Follow these steps to get ready for Remote Play:

  1. Turn on your Xbox console.
  2. Open the Settings app.
  3. Select Devices & connections.
  4. Select Remote features.
  5. Select Enable remote features.
    • If you see a checkmark next to Enable remote features, it is already enabled.
    • After enabling this setting, your Xbox will take a few moments to test your setup, and suggest ways remote play can be improved.
  6. Select Xbox app preferences.
  7. Select Allow connections from any device or Only from profiles signed in on this Xbox console.
  8. Return to the Remote features screen.
  9. Change Sleep mode to Standby.

How to Start Playing Xbox Series X|S Games With Your Laptop

While you don’t technically need an Xbox controller for this, we recommend using an official controller to get the best experience. If you’re not using an Xbox Series X|S controller, you might not be able to use Bluetooth to connect your controller to your laptop. In that case, you’ll need to use a different method to sync your controller with your PC.

Connect Your Xbox Controller to Your Laptop

If you’re playing near your Xbox, you won’t need to do anything here. Your controller will connect directly to your Xbox Series X|S. Otherwise, follow these steps to connect your Xbox controller to your laptop:

  1. On your laptop, open the Settings app.
  2. Click Bluetooth & Devices.
  3. Click Add device.
  4. Select Bluetooth.
  5. Turn on your Xbox controller by pressing the Xbox button.
  6. Press and hold the Pair button on your Xbox controller for a few seconds.
  7. Click Xbox wireless controller when it appears on the Add a device screen.

How to Download the Xbox App and Connect to Your Xbox

You’ll first need to install the Xbox app for PC for on your laptop. Once you’ve installed it, sign in with the same Microsoft account you use for your Xbox. Then perform the following:

  1. Open the Xbox app on your laptop.
  2. Click the Consoles button in the top-right of your screen.
  3. Click your Xbox. Your Xbox will now connect to your laptop.

After a brief loading screen, you’ll be greeted with the Xbox startup screen. From here, you can interact with your Xbox in the exact same way you would normally. You won’t be able to use your mouse and keyboard to interact with your Xbox with this method.

However, by clicking the three-button menu in the top-left of your screen with your mouse, you can access useful options. These include Mute, Send feedback, Toggle fullscreen, and Disconnect.

As long as your Xbox is set to Standby Mode, you won’t even need to turn your Xbox on first. Just connect to your Xbox as described above, and your Xbox will turn on remotely. So even if you’re on a train, on vacation, or even on a break at work, you can play games from your console.

What Else Can the Xbox App Do?

If you’ve only used the Xbox app for PC for Remote Gaming, you should know this is only a tiny part of its functionality. The Xbox app primarily serves as the platform for Xbox PC gaming. You can shop for new Xbox games, interact with the Xbox community, and take advantage of the Xbox Game Pass. Even if your laptop isn’t powerful enough to run the newest AAA titles, you can play games via Cloud Gaming.

You’re Now Ready to Use Remote Play on Your Laptop

As we’ve previously discussed, Remote Play is available on more than just PC. You can install the Xbox app on iOS and Android devices, so you can play wherever your phone is. However, as you’ll need to hold a controller to play, you might want a stand to hold your phone.

If you don’t have a console, or want to play with a friend who doesn’t have one, you’ll want to give Xbox Cloud Gaming a shot. You don’t even need an official Xbox controller for this, just a Game Pass Ultimate subscription.

XBox cloud gaming shown on various devices

What Is Xbox Cloud Gaming and How Does It Work?

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