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Features

Published on August 25th, 2015 | by Chris Scott

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Tested: Xbox One Game Streaming

I’ve been very happy with my purchase of the Xbox One. The system has given me more hours of use than my WiiU and Playstation 4 combined. Much like Microsoft set out to do, the Xbox One has become the centerpiece of my entertainment center. It is the box I use to watch TV, Netflix, Amazon Prime, and even YouTube. I listen to music through the system, and on occasion will utilize the BluRay drive to play one of those throwback physical discs. Xbox One really is center of everything.

However, at its core, the Xbox One is still a game machine. It is the device I game on the most and over the last 18 months or so, gaming has been the overt focus of Microsoft. The company has made numerous improvements to my gaming experience on the system and seems to be focused on making even more.

One of the big perks of the Xbox One being made by Microsoft is its integration with their latest operating system, Windows 10. Microsoft promised to integrate the Xbox experience onto Windows 10 with little to no hassle and after having used the Xbox app on Windows 10, it seems that PC gaming and console gaming have merged in a unique way. The feature that Microsoft and many others seem to be hanging their hat on with the app is the ability to stream Xbox One games directly to any Windows 10 device.

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It should be note that the streaming isn’t necessarily limited to just Xbox One games; the application actually streams the entire console to your Windows 10 device. This means that you can stream games, apps, even live television directly to your secondary device. Anything you can do on an Xbox One can be done via streaming on Windows 10. It’s an interesting concept and one that has a lot of promise, but at this time I’m not sure of the practical use of it outside of some fringe cases.

Streaming from the Xbox One to Windows 10 is simple, providing you have a solid and stable internet network for the two devices to be on. I tested out the streaming to my wired desktop PC and my wireless laptop. In both instances the streaming worked flawlessly without any noticeable lag. This was quite surprising because earlier this year, I tested out the PC to Xbox One Miracasting and the lag was extremely noticeable, to the point of it being useless for gaming applications.

Home network streaming working great is nice but I’m at a loss for what I would actually use it for. After all, I only have one Xbox One and with it being the center of my family’s entertainment that means that it is being used constantly. This isn’t a case where I can play a game via streaming while my family watches Netflix. The box just isn’t capable of handling that, nor did I expect it too. I had hoped for something similar to the PS4 to Vita streaming though where I could power on my PS4 from a remote location and utilize it via streaming. Unfortunately this doesn’t seem possible as Xbox Support on Twitter confirmed to me that both Xbox One and the receiving Windows 10 device need to reside on the same network. And with this in mind it relegates the streaming to just a cool curiosity than something that could have practical purpose.

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That isn’t to say that some won’t find it useful. Those that are utilizing the Xbox One as only a games console, and not their entertainment hub, may find it to be of value. And other cases, like the one our Features Editor Tony Odett recently laid out on The Perfectly Sane Show (link to ep. 265) where he may be unable to utilize his Xbox due to house guests, will certainly find the application to be of use. But like most things in life, it won’t be for everyone.

No matter how you look at it though, it is a cool feature. Even if it is just to be able to stream Rare Replay and play Jetpac at your breakfast table.

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