Secret Xbox button can save you money every month – here’s how to find the hidden feature
- Gamers can turn off a feature that’s been set as default on many Xbox consoles
- Switching to energy-saving mode can save on bills during cost-of living crisis
A hidden setting on Xbox can help you save on electricity bills during the cost of living crisis.
‘Instant On’ is a feature that’s been switched on by default on many of Microsoft’s Xbox Series X or Series S consoles.
Instant On puts the console in standby mode, making it quicker to activate the machine when you play – but it can waste precious energy.
The alternate option, known as Energy Saver mode, by comparison, doesn’t use as much power when the Xbox isn’t in use, although it takes longer to boot it up.
Pressing the button on the console to open the on-screen guide is the first step to deactivating Instant On.
Both the Xbox Series X (left) and Series S (right) were originally released with Instant On set as default
Instant On puts the console in standby mode, making it quicker to activate the machine when you play – but it can waste precious energy
While Instant On standby mode lets players instantly resume games, it could households cost up to £5 per month, according to the Verge.
Instant On consumes between 11 and 13 watts, while Energy Saver mode only consumes around 0.5 watts.
Microsoft made the more eco-friendly Energy Saver mode the default setting on Xbox Series X and Series S consoles shipped since March 2022.
However, the consoles were released back in November 2020, meaning millions were shipped with Instant On as default – and may still have the energy-draining setting activated.
The two power modes are also available to choose from on the Xbox One S, Microsoft’s older model from 2016.
‘You can configure your Xbox One or Xbox Series X|S console to either shut down or go to sleep when you turn off your console, depending on your preference,’ Microsoft says on its support page.
‘In shutdown mode, your console is fully shut down to save energy.’
To select the lower-cost setting, press the Xbox button on your console to open the on-screen guide.
Once this is open, select ‘Profile & system’ followed by ‘Settings’, ‘General’ and then ‘Power options’.
Then select the Shutdown (energy saving) option.
To select the lower-cost setting, press the Xbox button on your console to open the on-screen guide
Gamers may find the Instant On feature particular useful as the high processing power of the consoles mean they drain a lot of battery.
Microsoft’s flagship Xbox Series X is priced at £449, while the compact version, the Xbox Series S, retails at £249.
Microsoft said the Series X is the most powerful console it has ever made – featuring processing power twice that of the Xbox One X before it.
The fourth generation Xbox consoles have backwards compatibility, which allows them to play games from older consoles.
It means gamers have access to thousands of titles across four generations of content – from the original Xbox, released in 2001, to 2005’s Xbox 360 and 2013’s Xbox One.
Microsoft has just announced a new version of the Xbox Series S – the £299 Carbon Black, which packs double the storage as the original Series S.
The Carbon Black Xbox Series S is set to launch worldwide on September 1, but gamers can already pre-order the system.
THE TRILLION DOLLAR RISE OF MICROSOFT
April 4, 1975 Microsoft founded by Bill Gates and Paul Allen
June 25, 1981 Microsoft incorporates
November, 1983 Microsoft Windows announced
Novenber, 1985 Microsoft Windows version 1.0 released
February 26, 1986 Microsoft moves to corporate campus in Redmond, Washington where it is today
March 13, 1986 Microsoft stock goes public
August 1, 1989 Microsoft introduces earliest version of Office suite of productivity applications
August 24, 1995 Microsoft launches Windows 95
1995 – Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft, becomes the richest man in the world aged 39 with a fortune of $12.9 billion at the time
October 25, 2001 Microsoft launches Windows XP
November 15, 2001 Microsoft launches Xbox
October 21, 2003 Microsoft launches Microsoft Office System
November 22, 2005 Microsoft launches Xbox 360
January 30, 2007 Microsoft launches Windows Vista and the 2007 Microsoft Office System to consumers worldwide
June 28, 2011 Microsoft launches Office 365
April 24, 2019 Microsoft becomes the third company in the world to peak at more than $1 trillion in market capitalisation value