Xbox rolls out energy saver update, becoming the first Carbon Aware console

Xbox is taking steps to reduce its environmental impact and become more sustainable – starting with being the first ever console to offer a “carbon aware” mode.

According to Xbox Wire Blog, Xbox Insiders running Xbox Series X/S consoles have received an update to the console’s shutdown options. This update works towards reducing power consumption while the console is off, without reducing performance or the console’s ability to update firmware or software while inactive – using up to 20x less power compared to the Sleep option. Xbox is the first gaming console to provide carbon-conscious game downloads and updates. While this carbon-aware update is currently only available to Xbox Insiders, the update will soon roll out to all Xbox console users, giving them the ability to make their system more carbon aware.

This update is part of Xbox’s continued efforts to help reach Microsoft’s goal of being carbon-negative, water-positive, and zero-waste by 2030. To achieve that, Xbox is reworking its design, building, and distribution practices while considering how to create more opportunities for gamers worldwide to make decisions that help reduce environmental impact while gaming.

Xbox Insiders who have their Xbox Series X/S consoles configured to support automatic updates and use shutdown (energy saving) as a power option will also receive an update that makes their console carbon aware.
This entails lowering the console’s carbon footprint by timing updates and downloads to take advantage of the most renewable energy in your local energy grid.

Xbox has run the calculations and concluded that for every two Xbox consoles that swap to energy-saving mode – the carbon equivalent comes out to one tree planted and grown for a decade. These calculations are based on an average of Xbox Series X|S and One consoles working off an energy-saving preset for 20 hours a day over the course of a year.

As far as sustainability practices go in the gaming scene, Xbox is taking the lead and continually working on finding more ways to improve its sustainability practices for players everywhere.

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Carl-Edwin Michel

Carl-Edwin is a tech and video game enthusiast. He is the founder and CEO of Northern Arena - one of Canada's biggest esports tournament organizers - and TV and interactive production company Northern Arena Productions. He is also the owner of Mirage Esports, and the creator and executive producer of the Canadian Game Awards.

Carl-Edwin Michel has been reporting on the technology and gaming industry since 2009 as a freelance journalist, lecturer, and radio and TV personality.
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