How To Play Captured Video From Microsoft Surface to Xbox 360

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After taking videos on the Surface RT, playing them on your HDTV via Xbox 360, can’t be done from the Camera app. Here’s how to find and stream your videos.

The other day I took some sample videos on my Surface RT. Needless to say, the quality of the video and audio isn’t excellent, but then I wanted to stream them to my HDTV by way of my Xbox 360. It’s not as straightforward as you’d think, though. Here’s how to do it.

Take a Video or Picture with Surface RT

To capture videos or pictures on your Surface RT, tap the Camera app from the Start screen.

Camera Tile

Then you can select either the front or rear camera to take your video by tapping the Change Camera button. Tap the Video Mode button.

Change Camera

Now tap anywhere on the screen to start recording, and a timer will start in the lower-left corner of the screen. To stop recording, tap anywhere on the screen again.

Camera Timer

Stream Captured Video to HDTV via Xbox 360

Now that you have your video recorded, you can play it back in the Camera app. You’d think you can then bring up the Charms Bar, click Devices, and select your Xbox 360. Just like using the Play To feature in other Windows 8 apps. But instead, you’re greeted with the following message telling you there are no devices to receive the content. Even though you have your Xbox turned on and ready to receive the video.

Devices Message

So instead, you need to open the Photos app and go to Pictures Library > Camera Roll, then find the video you want to stream. Then tap the video to play it on the Surface.

Camera Roll

Now you can bring up the Charms bar, Devices, and your Xbox 360 will be available to stream the video – just tap it.

Xbox Device

On the Surface device, you’ll get a message that the video is playing to Xbox 360.

playing to Xbox 360

Another way to do it is to go into Desktop Mode, open your Camera Roll in the Photos folder, right-click the video, and select Play To > Xbox 360.

Play To

It’s a bit confusing at first, but it’s easy once you do it a couple of times. But that doesn’t mean it makes sense. I would like to see photos you take with the Camera app be placed in your Camera Roll. Then if you take videos with the camera, have them placed in your Videos folder. Or better yet, enable the Camera app to stream videos to your Xbox 360.



  1. todd

    December 31, 2013 at 11:13 pm

    So does your Xbox need to be connected to the internet for this to work or does it work like a Bluetooth ?

    • Brian Burgess

      January 1, 2014 at 12:06 am

      When I wrote this article, it was with the first gen RT Surface.

      Using the Play To feature, it goes over your WiFi network. I haven’t tried it out with Bluetooth, but I will give that a shot, not sure if it works or not…

  2. todd

    December 31, 2013 at 11:15 pm

    And I have a surface 2 not a rt if that matters.

  3. Todd

    January 1, 2014 at 5:27 pm

    Yeah I tried it and I had to have Internet connection. Which isn’t bad but I have limit Internet use. So I can’t do it a lot but but somthing still cool.

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