Xbox Carbon Footprint

Your Xbox Is Now the First Carbon Aware Console

Through Xbox, Microsoft wants to reduce its environmental impact by reducing and being carbon negative, water-positive, and zero-waste company by 2030.

Creating and offering the Shutdown (energy saving) power option, a feature made available last year was meant to be a way to reduce emissions and be sustainable in the long run. However, many still decided that Sleep (Instant On) was more convenient to use.

To address this, Microsoft is now working on a best-of-both-worlds solution – one that allows you to use Shutdown (energy saving) and also Sleep (Instant on). Previously, you could select one or the other with Shutdown (energy saving) fully powering the Xbox console off as it provided the lowest power consumption. Sleep allowed you to boot up faster and through voice commands, you could also download updates and games and even remote play.

Xbox Carbon Aware image

Now, a new update will be pushed to all consoles Microsoft revealed, one that will schedule when updates and firmware updates for you (or whatever hours you choose to do so) giving you a maintenance window for all the busy work your console requires.

Certain parts of the world are currently facing an energy crisis, specifically across Europe and the UK. Microsoft wants to alleviate some of the burden users face by pushing this update out to consoles around the world.

“This one-time update to your power settings will reduce your power consumption while your console is off, and will not affect performance, gameplay, or your console’s ability to receive overnight updates to system, games or apps,” says Blaine Hauglie, technical program manager at Xbox. “Remote features are supported while the console is powered-on; however, remote wake is not supported while the console is shut down.”

Older console models including the Xbox One will see new power mode options soon, too, including Shutdown (energy saving) as early as today. Xbox One consoles are currently testing messaging on how to deliver an optimal way to inform players. Players will be able to adjust the active hours on their console as well.

All of these changes are to make Xbox the first Carbon Aware Console, going so far as to turn it on at a time when it can use renewable energy from a local energy grid to save you some money.