How to connect Backbone One to PC


Players using the Backbone One as a controller in front of a bowl of pretzels.

The Backbone One controller is primarily designed for mobile gaming, but it also extends its utility significantly when connected to a PC. This connection unlocks a new realm of possibilities for gamers.

By integrating the Backbone One with a PC, gamers can even play the latest triple-A titles all from the comfort of their mobile devices. Here's everything you need to know about how to connect your Backbone One to a PC and what that does.

If you're looking for controllers to use on your PC, you might want to check out how to connect your PS5 controller to PC and how to connect your PS4 controller to PC.

How to connect the Backbone One to PC

To connect your Backbone One to your PC, you'll have to make sure that the system is running on either Windows or Mac. There are two ways you can connect the Backbone One to PC, and both serve different functions. The first way is through the Play On Any Screen function, and the second is through Steam Link.

Play on any screen menu on the Backbone One.
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Using the Backbone One's Play On Any Screen feature

The Backbone One's Play On Any Screen feature allows users to connect their Backbone to devices like Android tablets, iPads, and even Macs or PCs. To connect your Backbone to a Mac or PC with this feature, follow these steps:

  1. Attach your iPhone or Android to the Backbone
  2. Navigate to the Backbone app settings and into the Controller drawer
  3. Select Play On Any Screen
  4. Select PC as the device you want to connect your Backbone
  5. Unplug your phone and connect your Backbone to the PC or Mac using a USB cable (for Macs, you will need a MiFi-certified USB cable)

To show that the connection is successful, your Backbone One's indicator button will begin to glow blue.

Steam Link router hardware required for the feature.
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Playing Steam games with Backbone One using Steam Link

Steam Link is a feature that Valve provides for gamers to stream games from their PC on other devices such as their phone. By integrating the Backbone One's comfortable controller with your phone, you can get the most out of Steam Link.

To use Steam Link, however, you will need to own the Steam Link hardware. It's also important to note that you will have to own the games in your Steam library to play through Steam Link and that a select few titles may not be available to stream at all. Luckily, Steam Link's library is regularly being expanded, so it's still a great investment if you want to play PC games through your phone with the Backbone One.

That's all you need to know about connecting your Backbone One to PC. You might also be interested in our tech guides covering how Steam works on Chromebooks and our review of how powerful the Steam Deck is.

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