Microsoft seems to be focusing on finding ways to reduce the energy game produce on Windows PC or the company's Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S consoles. Microsoft has already sent an update to the consoles to overhaul the power settings menu. Next, the company may also add a way to switch power modes on console and PC.
Microsoft conducted an Xbox Insider Program survey to gauge how users would feel about energy-saving measures. The questionnaire asks players questions regarding which games they play most, how often they play, their level of concern amid the current cost of living crisis, and more.
There are important questions about energy consumption:
“When preparing to play a game, do you want to modify the game and/or hardware settings for the following reasons:
- In general, how concerned are you with the cost of your energy bills/amount of energy you use while playing games?
- How would you feel about having in-game features that can optimize settings to save energy if you toggle them on?
- In general, how would you feel about individual games automatically lowering framerate or resolution when the game is left idle or inactive?”
Energy Saving Modes
There are more questions along the same lines that essentially assess whether users want to be able to reduce energy consumption when playing. If Microsoft is asking these questions, it is because the company is at least exploring the idea of adding settings for different power modes.
Of course, Windows already has such settings. However, Microsoft's new energy-saving modes would focus on gaming and also be available on the Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S. Some of the questions suggest – and it is just logical – that a lower energy consumption mode will compromise the quality of gameplay.
In other words, a reduction in framerate and resolution provides worse graphical quality. As Microsoft is framing this as a cost-of-living concern and not an environmental one, users will want to see clear savings if they are to accept a reduction in gameplay quality (no matter how small the reduction is).
Tip of the day: After years of hefting a laptop around, you inevitably build up a menagerie of Wi-Fi networks. For the most part, they'll sit on your PC, hardly used, but at times a change in configuration can make it difficult to connect to a network your computer already remembers. At this point, it can be beneficial to make Windows forget a Wi-Fi network and delete its network profile.