Do you want to know how to attach an Xbox One controller to a computer? Although a keyboard and mouse are preferable for certain genres, a controller is preferable for others.
Since Microsoft regulates both platforms, connecting an Xbox controller to a PC is easy. So, here’s how to play PC games with your Xbox controller. There are three ways to attach an Xbox One controller to your PC, as it turns out. We’ll go over each approach one at a time.
1. Use a USB cable to connect an Xbox Controller to a PC.
A micro-USB cable is the easiest way to connect your Xbox controller to your PC. Simply attach the slim end of the cable to your Xbox One controller and the other end to a USB port on your device. If it doesn’t turn on on its own, push the Xbox button to turn it on, and unplug it to disconnect it.
Your machine should recognize the controller right away if you’re using Windows 10. In previous versions of Windows, the operating system should immediately download drivers, and the controller should be ready in a matter of seconds.
The batteries in your Xbox One controller can drain even when plugged into a monitor. To add rechargeable batteries to your Xbox One, we suggest purchasing the Xbox One Play and Charge Kit. When your controller is connected to your PC, it will charge, resolving any questions about battery life.
2. Use Bluetooth to connect an Xbox One controller to your PC.
Bluetooth is a simple way to attach your Xbox One controller to your computer. However, you’ll need a newer model Xbox One controller to use, as seen in the image below.
Your controller is not Bluetooth-compatible if it has the plastic wrapping around the Xbox button, as seen in the top example. If you want to link your Xbox controller to your PC wirelessly, you’ll need to use the Xbox Wireless Adapter (described below). Bluetooth is enabled on the bottom model, which has no plastic around the Xbox button.
In Windows 10, go to Settings > Devices > Bluetooth & other devices to use Bluetooth. If Bluetooth isn’t already available, turn it on, then select Add Bluetooth or other units. Choose Bluetooth from the drop-down menu.
To turn it on, click the Xbox button on your controller. Then press and hold the Bind button (the small button next to LB) on top of the controller for a few seconds, and the Xbox button will begin flashing rapidly.
Your Xbox controller should appear in the menu on your PC from here. Pick it and obey the on-screen instructions to pair them.
3. Attach an Xbox One Controller to a PC with the Xbox Wireless Adapter
Xbox Wireless is a Microsoft protocol that is integrated into a few computers, although it’s unlikely that yours is one of them. But you’ll need to buy the Xbox Wireless Adapter to sync your Xbox One controller and PC wirelessly without Bluetooth. With this adapter, you can connect your Xbox controller to your PC using the same proprietary system that your console uses.
Allow Windows to install drivers by plugging them into a USB port on your computer. When it’s over, press and hold the adapter’s button until you see a light pulse.
To switch on your controller, press and hold the Xbox button, then press and hold the Bind button on top of it. The controller and adapter can see each other and attach after a few seconds.
Connecting your Xbox One Controller back to your console
You can switch off your Xbox One controller by holding the Xbox button for more than 10 seconds. When the light is on, it’s switched off.
Keep in mind that if your Xbox One controller is already connected to your console, the device will be switched on by pressing the Xbox button. You should still be able to pair it wirelessly using one of the above methods, but you might want to turn off your console after you do so (or unplug it before you start).
After you attach your Xbox controller to a PC using some form, the next time you want to use it, you will need to re-pair it with your Xbox. You can attach the controller to your Xbox using a USB cable and press the Xbox button to pair it.
Click the Connect button on the device to do this wirelessly. It’s on the left of the disc tray on the original Xbox One, and on the bottom right of the front panel on the Xbox One S and Xbox One X. After you hit this button, turn your controller on by pressing the Xbox button, and then keep the Bind button on the top to pair it.