The Xbox February Update Rolls Out Today! 


  • Xbox is now the first console to offer carbon aware game downloads and updates. You can choose the energy settings that work best for you.
  • Hide game art when selecting tiles on your Xbox Home background.
  • Use the Google Home app as a touch remote control for your Xbox console.

Team Xbox continues to bring new ways to make Xbox better, with you at the center, as we refine the experience and deliver brand-new features based on your feedback. This month’s update offers updates to Xbox power management, the ability to hide game art when selecting tiles on your Xbox Home background, access to new touch controls in the Google Home app to control your Xbox like you do other smart devices.

Xbox is now the first console to offer carbon aware game downloads and updates

Last month we shared sustainability updates for Xbox that rolled out to Xbox Insiders. Today the following update will start to be available to all Xbox consoles:

  • Xbox is now the first console to offer carbon aware game downloads and updates. When your console is plugged in, connected to the internet and regional carbon intensity data is available, Xbox will schedule game, app, and OS updates for your console at specific times during the nightly maintenance window that may result in lower carbon emissions because a higher proportion of electricity is coming from lower-carbon sources on the electric grid. This decreases fossil fuel dependency and CO2 emissions and could potentially save you money.  
  • You can choose what works best for you and adjust your settings at any time. Shutdown (energy saving) cuts power use by up to 20x when it’s off compared to the Sleep power option. 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. This is based on an average of Xbox Series X|S and Xbox One consoles on Shutdown (energy saving) for 20 hours per day for 1 year; actual energy savings and avoided emissions may vary by console and other factors using Greenhouse Gas Equivalencies Calculator | US EPA.

Hide game art when selecting tiles on Home

Some players find game art distracting or prefer a more simplified background while navigating their Home screen. 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. Instead, the Home background will always remain the solid color of your choice. To adjust your background, navigate to Settings > General >  Personalization > My background > Solid color and game art. On this page you can choose to show or hide game art with the toggle in the bottom right of the screen.

Screenshot of Solid color and game art options.

Use the Google Home app as a touch remote control for your Xbox console.

Since 2019, you’ve been able to control your Xbox console using voice commands with Google Assistant. Today, we’ve partnered with Google so that you can use the Google Home app as a touch remote control for your Xbox console. Now, when you add your Xbox console to your Google Home app, you’ll be able to easily turn your console on and off, navigate on-screen, control media playback, and more. You can use the Google Home app to command your Xbox like you do for other Smart Home devices.

 To get started, go to the Google Home app on your phone. Pull down to refresh your devices and tap on your Xbox console to bring up the touch controls. Remote control features include: power on/off, directional navigation, navigate home, navigate back, play/pause, skip/previous, volume up/down, mute/unmute, and record game clip.

Screenshot of Google Home app remote control.

Jump back into a party with your friends

We’re experimenting with some different experiences to make it easy to jump back into a party with your friends. As we roll this out, a random subset of users will be able to give it a try. To get started, go to the “Parties & Chats” tab in the guide on your Xbox console. Click on the “Party” or “Party History” button. You’ll see a list of your previous parties, which you can use to restart one of those parties or create a new one. You can also easily select which friends you want to invite.

Help shape the future of Xbox

Stay tuned to Xbox Wire for future updates and all the latest and greatest Xbox related news. For support related to Xbox updates, visit the official Xbox Support site.

We love hearing from the community, whether you have a suggestion for a new feature that you’d like to see added, or you want to give feedback on existing features that could use some improvement. From game capture and share improvements, to helping games load faster, new ways to connect with your gaming community, and so much more, we’re always listening and looking for ways to improve Xbox experiences for gamers around the world. If you’d like to help create the future of Xbox and get early access to new features, download the Xbox Insider Hub on your Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, or Windows PC today. Let us know what you think!

[This article originally appeared on Xbox Wire]

Xbox Wire

Posts by this account are syndicated from Xbox Wire.

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