If you’re not a fan of Xbox’s system-level game upgrades, you can opt for the more vanilla experience.
Microsoft has detailed what the March firmware update – available March 16 – is going to bring, particularly for owners of Xbox Series X and Series S consoles.
The biggest feature in the firmware update is a toggle for two of the best features on Microsoft’s next-gen consoles: FPS Boost and Auto HDR. FPS Boost allows Xbox Series X/S to run previous gen games at much higher framerates than what they shipped with, as we’ve recently seen with the first wave games Far Cry 4, Watch Dogs 2 and others.
Auto HDR, on the other hand, uses machine learning to automatically tone map the image, allowing non-HDR games – especially older games developed before HDR became prominent – to display in HDR for more vibrant colours.
Though both features offer meaningful upgrades, it’s understandable that some may want to play the games without altering the developer’s original intent, or when they simply make things worse. Once you install this update, you’ll be able to turn both off per game (under Manage), but not at the system level.
As part of the same release, the Xbox Accessories app is being updated to support the recently announced Xbox Wireless Headset. Once installed, the app will let you customise the audio experience, and adjust the brightness of the mute button and more. The Accessories app update will also be available on PC.
The March release also includes various other improvements, such as a more organised Manage screen for My Games & Apps that lets you clearly see which part of the bundle is designed for your console, as well as the ability to manage your various Xbox subscriptions right from the console.