Xbox Series X is getting a useful free update

Save your energy for when you really need it with this money-saving upgrade

Xbox Series X
(Image credit: Future)

I love the Xbox Series X, but if like me you were lucky enough to get one of the earliest ones you might be wasting money: its instant-on setting meant that if you didn't go into your console's settings and enable the energy saver mode, you could be wasting energy equivalent to the price of a brand new triple-A game every year.

As a result of this, Microsoft is now making it even easier to reduce your Xbox Series X's energy consumption, which is something you really want to be doing as energy bills get ever more ridiculous.

The news comes via Tom Warren of The Verge (opens in new tab), who reports that new power options are coming to the console fairly soon. They're currently in the Xbox Insider preview, where new features get tested before making their way to the rest of us.

What are the new Xbox Series X power options?

The new features come in the form of a new General Power Options page in the Xbox's Sleep Mode and Startup menu. The first thing you'll notice is a coloured indicator at the right-hand side of the screen; this shows your Xbox's current energy consumption when it isn't being used. You can choose between Shut-Down (energy saving) and Sleep (formerly Standby) options, with the latter as the most convenient but most costly in terms of energy, and there's also an option for you to customise the power options to suit.

In the screenshot Warren shared, the Xbox claims to be using 0.5W in Shut-Down mode compared to 13 to 15W in Sleep mode. And Shut-Down mode will still download and install console updates overnight, so you don't need to worry about missing anything when your console is at its most energy efficient.

Microsoft hasn't said when the new power features are coming but they should be in a system update fairly soon.

Writer, musician and broadcaster Carrie Marshall has been covering technology since 1998 and is particularly interested in how tech can help us live our best lives. Her CV is a who’s who of magazines, newspapers, websites and radio programmes ranging from T3, Techradar and MacFormat to the BBC, Sunday Post and People’s Friend. Carrie has written thirteen books, ghost-wrote two more and co-wrote another seven books and a Radio 2 documentary series. When she’s not scribbling, she’s the singer in Glaswegian rock band HAVR (havrmusic.com (opens in new tab)).