Game Streaming from an Xbox One to a MacBook Air (11 inch, mid-2013) using Windows 10 (Boot Camp)

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The Short Version: I was able to successfully use Xbox One Game Streaming using Windows 10 via Boot Camp (OS X El Capitan) on my MacBook Air (11 inch, mid-2013) with 8 GBs of RAM and the Medium quality setting with only minor audio lag and no noticeable video lag.

This post is intended for a very small audience. It doesn’t serve as a how-to guide (there are plenty of those available) but simply as a statement that this Xbox One feature works well with this configuration.

Last fall I purchased an Xbox One. A week later I found out that we were having a baby at which point I realized it was a good thing that I purchased the console before we knew. Let’s face it, even at reduced prices the current generation consoles are still expensive and not an essential purchase once you realize that you’re about to have to take care of another person. Another person.

With recent updates Microsoft added an interesting feature to the Xbox One. Specifically, what is referred to as Xbox One Game Streaming. This feature provides the ability to stream game video and audio from an Xbox One to a computer running Windows 10 via a Windows 10 Xbox One app.

Now, I realize that some may think this feature is useless. Why can’t you just sit in front of the Xbox One and play on that TV, you might ask? It’s not always that easy. Sometimes you have family that would prefer to use that TV. Other times you want to keep an eye on your infant without having to leave the living room every time you hear him making noise over the baby monitor.

For those of you that have an Apple MacBook Air (mid-2013) the answer is yes, you can use this feature and it appears to work very well. Note that you must have Windows 10 installed to get the Xbox One app and use this feature. I have only tried this via Boot Camp and I doubt that it would work as well in a virtual machine though I haven’t tried this nor do I intend to.

I was impressed that it worked as well as it did considering that I’m currently only running a 2.4 GHz 802.11n wireless network. When I first fired up the app it was set to use High quality but that failed after a moment so I set it to Medium and so far it hasn’t dropped me yet. I was disappointed that when it failed out that it didn’t attempt to automatically re-establish the stream but that didn’t happen using Medium anyway so it hasn’t been a major concern.

I did have noticeable audio lag though it wasn’t terrible and after a while I didn’t even notice it except when there was dialog in cutscenes between levels of Halo 5. The Xbox One controller connected via micro-USB cable and I was able to use whatever headphones that I use with the MacBook Air.

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