How to play Xbox games on any TV without needing an Xbox

All you need is a Fire TV Stick 4K and Game Pass

Amazon Fire TV – Xbox Cloud Gaming
(Image credit: Amazon)
Quick Summary

Xbox Cloud Gaming is now available on Fire TV devices, with the Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K and 4K Max able to stream Xbox games.

You just need to plug one of the compatible devices into your TV, pair a Bluetooth controller, and subscribe to Xbox Game Pass Ultimate to access 100s of Xbox games.

Xbox Cloud Gaming can now be accessed through any TV with a HDMI port, thanks to a partnership with Amazon and its Fire TV Sticks,

Announced at the end of June, the service has now arrived on the Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K Max and Fire TV Stick 4K, so you can play 100s of Xbox games without needing a console.

And, as many of the games are run from Xbox Series X hardware, you'll get the full experience on most of the modern titles.

It means you can play the likes of Starfield, Forza Motorsport, and even EA Sports FC 24 on your TV right now – all you need is a compatible Fire TV Stick, Bluetooth controller (the Xbox Wireless Controller is a great match, naturally), and a subscription to Xbox Game Pass Ultimate.

The latter costs £12.99 / $16.99 per month, with a 14-day trial period available for just £1 / $1 available for you to try it out first.

For that monthly fee, you not only get access to Xbox Cloud Gaming and the 100s of games on the platform, but Xbox Game Pass for use on Xbox consoles, PC Game Pass with a huge library of Windows games to play on a desktop or laptop, EA Play which covers Electronic Arts' back catalogue, and discounts across the Xbox Store. You also have the ability to play all games online.

Of course, many of the additional benefits don't really matter if you don't own an Xbox or PC, but the £12.99 / $16.99 monthly fee is still very reasonable for cloud streaming only. After all, just play one game a month and you've already made your money back and then some.

How does Xbox Cloud Gaming work?

Like other cloud services, Xbox Cloud Gaming works by giving you access to a large library of games hosted on remote servers around the world. You choose what game you want to play through the Xbox app and it will load remotely, sending you the video of the game running.

Your control codes head over the internet in the opposite direction, with the action then showing up in the video stream you see on your TV (or mobile device).

For all intents and purposes, this works as if you're playing the game on an Xbox console, although as it has to send and receive data over an online connection, you can experience some latency (the amount of time it takes for you to see movement after you press a button).

That has been greatly improved in recent times though, and it doesn't really affect most games. Playing twitch shooters, such as Call of Duty, can be impacted by latency, especially if you're playing against someone who is running the game locally, but it won't matter to the vast amount of casual gamers.

And let's face it, being able to play new releases and a huge archive of top-notch games on a TV without needing a console is pretty impressive. All for just one monthly fee.

What's more, once you have your Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscription, you can also play the same games on any mobile device, Samsung Smart TV, or through a web browser, even picking up the same save games as you go.

It's a step in the right direction for Xbox, we feel, and we wouldn't be surprised if the service didn't also pop up on other streaming devices soon – including Android TV, Chromecast and Apple TV.

We'll let you know if and when we hear more.

Rik Henderson
News Editor

Rik is T3’s news editor, which means he looks after the news team and the up-to-the-minute coverage of all the hottest gadgets and products you’ll definitely want to read about. And, with more than 35 years of experience in tech and entertainment journalism, including editing and writing for numerous websites, magazines, and newspapers, he’s always got an eye on the next big thing.

Rik also has extensive knowledge of AV, TV streaming and smart home kit, plus just about everything to do with games since the late 80s. Prior to T3, he spent 13 years at Pocket-lint heading up its news team, and was a TV producer and presenter on such shows as Channel 4's GamesMaster, plus Sky's Games World, Game Over, and Virtual World of Sport.