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This crucial Xbox update could save you money

The Xbox February update is now rolling out, bringing potential energy bill savings for gamers.

The update brings the new carbon aware downloads feature announced by Microsoft last month. When enabled, it’ll mean game downloads and operating system updates will take place at night when the grid may be powered by lower carbon emissions.

The feature relies on regional carbon intensity data and Microsoft says it could decrease fossil fuel dependency, CO2 emissions and could result in energy bill savings.

Microsoft is the first console to offer this feature, but it is quite similar to Apple’s Clean Energy Charging feature, which will optimise iPhone charging when the grid uses cleaner energy sources.

It’s part of the revamped energy savings options Microsoft is offering gamers. The company says the Shutdown mode (aka Energy Saving) cuts power use by 20x compared to the quick-waking Sleep option. That will definitely save you money.

“For every two consoles that switch to Shutdown (energy saving) for one year, we will save the equivalent amount of carbon removed by one tree planted and grown for a decade,” Microsoft says today in a blog post.

Elsewhere in the update, Microsoft is enabling gamers to hide potentially distracting game art in favour of a solid colour block. “With this new feature gamers can hide game art so it will no longer replace the Home background each time you move to select a game tile,” the company said.

Xbox Hide Game Art

Xbox owners can now use the Google Home app as a touch remote for the console, adding to the existting Google Assistant voice capabilities. It means you’ll be able to turn the console on and off, control media and more via the app.

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