The Natural Resources Defense Council has claimed that the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One could cost US consumer $1 billion in energy bills annually, $400 million of which is being consumed in standby modes alone. If true this means that the consoles will be expending the equivalent annual output of a large, 750-megawatt power plant. Some of the key findings in their study were as follows:
- The Xbox One and PS4 consume two to three times more annual energy than the latest models of their predecessors, the Xbox 360 and PS3.
- The Xbox One draws less power than the PS4 in on mode. However, the Xbox One consumes a lot more energy when not in use (connected standby mode).
- The PS4 uses 8.5 watts in standby mode in order to be able to charge the controllers, and the Xbox One uses 15.7 watts waiting for the “Xbox On” voice command.
Pierre Delforge, NRDC director of high-tech energy efficiency, whose team performed the testing said:
Gamers shouldn’t be locked into higher electric bills for the lifetime of their consoles just because manufacturers haven’t optimized the performance of their products…But if Microsoft and Sony follow NRDC’s recommendations, they could cut the new consoles’ electricity use by one-fourth beyond current projections through software and hardware optimizations, saving U.S. consumers $250 million on their annual utility bills.
Nintendo’s Wii U, being the least powerful system, was also the most energy efficient, using only 0.4 watts in standby mode, and a maximum of 34 watts during gameplay. In comparison, the PS4 uses 137 watts during gameplay, with Xbox One at 112 watts.