Xbox One Controller

How to use an Xbox One Controller on a Laptop and Mac

So you just got a new gaming laptop and want to start gaming right away because you are bored while staying at home. If you prefer a controller over a mouse and keyboard, you have the option to use an Xbox One controller. And, since Windows 10 natively supports the Xbox One wireless controller, setup should be easy, right?

It wasn’t that long ago that trying to connect a controller to your laptop in Windows was a major hassle, or you needed plenty of wires and cords. The good news is that new technology has made it easier to connect your Xbox One wireless controller to a Windows 10 laptop with just a simple press of a button and a couple of menu tweaks.

Syncing your Xbox controller to your laptop via Windows 10 isn’t too complicated. Just follow these steps and you’ll be gaming with your controller in no time. The great thing about the Xbox controller is that Steam and most other PC games work naturally with it. That means you don’t have to worry about downloading a controller remapper.

How to use an Xbox One wireless controller on a Windows 10 laptop

  • Step 1: Make sure you have the right Xbox One wireless controller. The right controller has the Xbox power button embedded into the matte black plastic unlike older controllers that do not. Or you can use an Elite Xbox One controller to eliminate any confusion.
  • Step 2: Turn on your Xbox Wireless Controller by pressing the Xbox button.
  • Step 3: Press and hold the Bind button on your controller for three seconds. You will see the Xbox button start to flash rapidly.
  • Step 4: On your PC, press the Bluetooth button in the taskbar area, then choose Add a Bluetooth Device.
  • Step 5: Turn on Bluetooth and select Add Bluetooth or other devices > Bluetooth. Your PC will begin searching for your controller.
  • Step 6: Select Xbox Wireless Controller > Done.

How to connect an Xbox One Controller to your Mac

Playing video games on a Mac isn’t always easy. Not all games have Mac support, Macs tend to have less graphical power, and figuring out how to connect your favorite controller can be a challenge.

Luckily, you can use almost all of your controllers on a Mac, including an Xbox controller. Unfortunately, it’s something of an involved process.

You can indeed use an Xbox controller with a Mac, but you’ll need a wired connection via micro-USB cable — you can’t play wirelessly.

You’ll also need to install the 360Controller driver. Once you do so, you can use your Xbox One controller, or an Xbox 360 controller.

How to Connect an Xbox one Controller to your Mac

  1. Go to GitHub and download the latest 360Controller driver for your Mac. On the download page, scroll down and expand Assets and then click the .dmg file.
  2. Install the 360Controller driver by opening the downloaded .dmg file, then follow the installation steps, which consist of clicking Continue and Agree when prompted. You’ll need to restart your computer afterwards.
  3. Once your computer restarts, click the Apple logo at the top-left of your screen and select System Preferences.
  4. Click on the Xbox 360 Controller icon.
  5. Now connect the Xbox controller to the Mac via a microUSB to USB cable, or via microUSB to USB-C, depending on how new your Mac is.
  6. A picture of an Xbox 360 controller will appear on the screen, along with a number of customization options. The dropdown menu at the top of the page should read, Xbox One Wired Controller (Wired).

You can now configure the gamepad’s buttons as you see fit, then start playing your favorite games on a Mac using your Xbox controller.

Troubleshooting

If the Xbox 360 Controller menu isn’t detecting your controller, make sure that it’s plugged in and turned on (you can turn on the controller by pressing and holding the Xbox button in the center).

If it still isn’t detected:

  1. Make sure that you’ve installed the latest version of 360controller.
  2. Open System Preferences again.
  3. Click Security & Privacy.
  4. At the bottom of the menu that opens, there will be a notice saying that your Mac blocked a program signed by “Drew Mills.” Click Allow next to this message.
  5. Try plugging in your controller and going to the Xbox 360 Controllers menu again.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I control my Xbox from my laptop?

To connect your PC to your Xbox One console: On your PC, open the Xbox Console Companion app and choose the Connection icon on the left side (looks like a little Xbox One). Choose your Xbox, and then choose Connect. From now on, the Xbox app will connect to your Xbox One automatically, as long as it’s on.

Can you play Xbox on laptop without controller?

The ‘Xbox’ app on Windows (which is different than the ‘Xbox Console Companion’ app) allows you to play any game from the Xbox Play Anywhere list. The benefit of this method is that you get to choose whether you’d like to play with your mouse and keyboard or use a controller connected to the PC.

Can you use a Xbox One controller on a gaming laptop?

You can indeed use an Xbox controller with a Mac, but you’ll need a wired connection via micro-USB cable — you can’t play wirelessly. You’ll also need to install the 360Controller driver. Once you do so, you can use your Xbox One controller, or an Xbox 360 controller.

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