Consoles Gaming

Why does my Xbox One get warm even when it’s switched off?

Xbox One

Relax. Someone’s not sneaked in a quick Rocket League session behind your back, and the console’s not about to do a Galaxy Note 7 either.

This is down to the Xbox One’s instant-on power mode, which (theoretically, at least) allows you to press the power button and resume a session from where you left off. This mode also lets the console download patches while the machine’s on standby. So the next time EA drops a few gigabytes down the pipe to patch FIFA 17, your Xbox will suck down the patch and install it in the background, often causing the Xbox One to reach peak toastiness in my experience.

If you’re concerned instant-on mode is causing your electricity meter to spin faster than Fat Boy Slim’s decks, you’ve got every right to be concerned: the console uses 15 watts of power when left on instant-on mode. By comparison, an Amazon Echo speaker sips only 3 watts on standby, and most modern televisions only need a watt or two when idling.

You can do your bit for the icebergs by slipping the console into energy-saving mode. When the console’s on, double-tap the illuminated Xbox button on your controller, select Settings > All Settings and do the necessary in the Power mode & startup menu.

Energy-saving mode consumes only 0.5 watts of energy – 30 times less than instant-on – but you will have to wait a minute or so for the console to boot before you can crack on with Call of Duty, and you won’t be able to rouse the console by yelling at a Kinect controller.


About the author

Barry Collins

Barry has scribbled about tech for almost 20 years for The Sunday Times, PC Pro, WebUser, Which? and many others. He was once Deputy Editor of Mail Online and remains in therapy to this day. Email Barry at

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