Rainway lets Xbox One owners stream existing PC games (update)

What you need to know

  • Rainway is an app that lets you stream your PC games to a number of devices.
  • Today, the beta app is available to everyone on Xbox One.
  • Beforehand, a closed beta test was taking place for select users who signed up.
  • You can download the Rainway beta app for Xbox One on the Microsoft Store (opens in new tab).

Updated Februry 1, 2020: The Rainway beta app has been pulled from the Microsoft Store due to a request from Microsoft. We'll update you as soon as we know more.

While Rainway isn't a traditional subscription-based streaming service like PlayStation Now, it still allows you to play all of your existing PC games on a number of devices as long as they're connected to the internet. You have to download a Rainway client on your PC and then can access your games even from a browser. The developer claims to offer minimal latency no matter if you're on a mobile device or an Xbox One.

A few days ago, Andrew Sampson, the founder and CEO of Rainway said, "I'm also happy to share that our first major game console release will be for the Xbox One in Q1 of 2019  —  enabling all Xbox One owners to play their PC games on the console."

Hopefully, Rainway will prevail where other services have failed. The main problem with game streaming is the input lag. If your internet connection isn't strong enough or there's an issue with the servers, games can become unplayable. Hopefully, the team of Rainway has taken that into account and worked out a feasible solution. However, only time will tell. We'll provide you with more information as soon as we can test out the Xbox One version.

Asher Madan

Asher Madan handles gaming news for Windows Central. Before joining Windows Central in 2017, Asher worked for a number of different gaming outlets. He has a background in medical science and is passionate about all forms of entertainment, cooking, and antiquing.

  • This would be great if it really works
  • Wait, so do you stream your games from your PC or from a server? Will my PC be running the game?
  • It was unclear to me too, but after looking it up, it seems it's hosted on your PC (they call it a client, but technically it's the server). So you're limited by your own hardware and both down- and uplink speeds.
  • Yeah I think they mean client in the form of it being a subscription based service, and their servers manage these subscriptions. Your computer needs their client that will act as a broadcaster for your other devices. That's how I understand it anyways
  • Basically like stream to Mixer privately and share your gamepad with yourself.
  • I think your PC will be running the game. I don't know why they're so ambiguous about this.
  • It's just streaming, the same as Steam Link technology, or streaming Xbox games to PC. Your PC will always be the one running the game.
  • I wouldn't trust these guys at all. They used the Switch to Garner a ton of attention and then when asked about it they just ignored it. The owner of Rainway is a known scumbag too. Steam already streams remote and Moonlight is a better alternative.
    They are just trying to bandwagon Xbox guys now.
  • If it works on the XO, sure.
  • Yup, definitely a scam. Otherwise it would be famous by it's own merits.
  • It begins...! I always thought this was the premise behind play anywhere.
  • Hello, legal department? We need you to come by ASAP. I mean, if they're going to allow these things by third parties, I don't see why MS doesn't make it so we can just play emulated Xbox games on PC.
  • You're overthinking this; this is just a streaming client on the XBox from your PC. You already can use the Xbox app on PC to play Xbox games from your Xbox.
  • sounds neat but if its going to come from my pc. to a server to my xbox. thats going to lag more. if its a local connection and the software works over my network Im sure it will be more optimized. I dont think I will sign up for this as I dont have amazing 1gbps internet im only on 25 down 5 up.
  • I just want to play Java Minecraft on my Xbox. If this lets me do that, I'm ready to hear more.
  • Lawsuit coming? This checks a lot of grey areas.
  • You're overthinking this; this is just a streaming client on the XBox from your PC as a server. Nothing illegal nor grey area about it. Even Microsoft lets you use Xbox app on your PC to stream Xbox games from your Xbox.
  • Nope, it really doesn't.