Skip to Content

How To Make Xbox Games Download Faster (Does It Download Faster Off?)

*This post may contain affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases.


When you are downloading an app or a game on the Xbox console it seems like you have to wait for hours until the downloading is completed sometimes!

The game files that are very large generally download at an incredibly slow speed on the Xbox.

Of course, the downloading speed of any video games or apps depends on the type of connection (wired or wireless) that you have and the internet download speeds that are provided by your internet service provider.

It is important to test a variety of things that can help in increasing the download speed on your Xbox to try and get it as fast as possible. 

Having multiple devices connected to the same internet service as your Xbox is connected to can often be the main reason for the slow download speeds, however, various other factors need to be considered as possible reasons for slowing down the downloading speed of your Xbox. 

So if you are experiencing slow download speeds with your Xbox then you likely want to try and find a way to speed that up. Is there anything that you can do that will actually speed up the downloads? 

Having your Xbox “off” (in rest mode) will not increase the download speeds of your Xbox over just letting your XBox sit. However, if you are playing a game or doing other things with the console that will slow down the downloading process.

Games on Your Xbox 360, Xbox One, or Xbox Series X will download faster if you are not doing anything else with the console besides downloading but there is no difference in speed between your console being “off” and when you aren’t actively using it.

I will go into detail about other methods that you can use to speed up your Xbox downloads in the next section.

The downloading speed of your Xbox can slow down if you are using the device and keeping something downloading at the same time. The combination of you using the device while downloading will cause the download to slow to a snail’s pace.

Due to this reason, it is a good idea to keep an eye on the downloading status and keep your Xbox console on (but not in use) until the download is over. 

You can also download games when the console is “off” via the Instant On mode. Technically the console is not off but it is only being used for downloading files or games so the download will be faster than if you are using it but not necessarily faster than with the console on.

There is a large debate in the gaming community as to whether downloading in the Instant On mode (or“off”) is faster or if it is better to leave your Xbox on but not use it. There have been many varied reports with some people saying one way is faster and others claiming the opposite.

The easiest thing for you to do is simply test it out on your console and internet connection!

Try and download a file with both the console on and the console “off” (Instant-On) and leave each one for an hour. Then after that time cancel the download and start over with the other method. This will easily give you the answer of which is quicker for your Xbox as it seems to vary from model to model and even the same models don’t appear to have consistent download speeds! 

One thing that you can do to massively increase the download speeds of your Xbox console is to make sure it is hard-wired to the internet. Having your Xbox console connected to your modem or router via an ethernet cable will work wonders for your download speeds.

If you prefer to watch a video instead of reading then you can do that below.

Are you a huge Xbox fan? Then you have to check out this amazing Xbox gear and decor. Whether you want an Xbox-styled wallet, a sweatshirt, or a pair of Xbox socks there are plenty of choices to choose from. You can find them all by clicking here.

Vertical Cooling Stand Compatible with Xbox Series X, YUANHOT Charging Station Dock with 1400mAh Rechargeable Battery Pack and Dual Controller Charger Ports (NOT Compatible with Xbox One X/S), Black

If you have an Xbox you need to get this cooling/charging stand for your console/controllers.

There is nothing worse than being ready for a long night of gaming only to realize your controllers are dead. With this stand that never has to happen again!

How To Make Xbox Download Speeds Faster

You can make games download faster on your Xbox 360, Xbox One, or Xbox Series X in several ways. To speed up your Xbox download speed you should:

  • Only download one game at a time
  • Reboot your internet
  • Connect your Xbox directly to the internet via a wired connection (ethernet connections are far faster)
  • Close out of your other games/apps
  • Don’t play on/use the Xbox until it is done downloading
  • Increase your internet speeds

The simplest way to download your Xbox games faster is by simply closing out of the other games and apps and not doing anything on your console. When these games are open it will take away from the amount of power your device can use to download a game and the same is true for actively playing while trying to download something.

The Xbox One conveniently lets you play other games or use apps while a game is downloading, but this will result in the download taking more time than usual. This especially goes for other games that use the internet.

If you close out any other games and apps while your game is downloading, your Xbox One will run faster, and so will your download.

If you have an Ethernet cable, you don’t have to rely on Wi-Fi connections to improve your download speeds. Simply connect the Ethernet cable to your internet router and to your Xbox One. Once the Ethernet cable is connected, your wired ethernet connection will be stronger and your downloads should speed up considerably.

There’s one last solution for Xbox users who suffer from slow download speeds despite applying the fixes above. It involves canceling the software download or installation entirely, then restarting it. This is far less likely to work than the aforementioned fixes, but it’s worth trying if nothing else has worked.

Does Xbox 360, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X Continue Downloading When Off Or In Standby?

If you have a Microsoft Xbox console you will likely download things quite often. Whether it is for updating your current games or downloading brand new ones downloading is a part of life for gamers.

Many people will leave their Xbox console on while they download an update or new game but do you have to do this? Will an Xbox console still download while it is off or in standby mode?

If your Xbox console is turned off entirely (meaning it is shut down or unplugged) it won’t continue downloading. However, an Xbox will continue downloading in standby mode and will actually download just as fast as when the console is powered on.

When most people ask about Xbox games downloading while the console is “off” they often mean standby mode. Very rarely do gamers entirely shut off their consoles and most of the time we just put them into standby mode.

However, if you entirely shut down your console and unplug it will not continue to download. If you turn off your Xbox console the normal way (by pushing the button or turning it off with your controlled) you are actually putting it in standby mode and it will continue to download games, updates, etc. while it is “turned off” using those methods.

Why Is My Xbox Downloading So Slow When I Have Fast Internet?

Having your Xbox download games incredibly slow despite having fast internet can be extremely frustrating. This is especially true now as more and more games require larger and larger downloads.

Why does this happen? Why does an Xbox download so slow even when internet speeds are fast?

The main reasons why download speeds on your Xbox are slow despite you having fast internet is because too many people are on the internet or because you are using Wifi and not a hard-wired internet connection for your console.

Even if you are hard-wired to the internet having too many devices connected at once can draw a lot of bandwidth and cause your Xbox downloads to slow way down. You will also want to check the network settings on your router and make sure that there are no advanced settings that are throttling your Xbox console.

Some routers will have limits that will restrict how much bandwidth a single device can use so be sure and check that as it could be causing the download speeds on your console to be much slower than they should be.

Another thing that can slow down your Xbox download speeds is that you are still actively using the console. Even if you aren’t using the internet on the console if you are playing games you will redirect a lot of the energy from that download to your game which in turn will slow down your downloads.

How To Close Games And Software On The Xbox One?

If you have been playing games on your Xbox, you may be having issues with getting them to close. Do you need to do something special besides leaving the game? 

You probably do not want all of your games running in the background of your Xbox like most people will have running on their phones. So how do you close games on the Xbox One?

To close games and software on the Xbox, you will need to:

  1. Navigate to the console’s Home screen.
  2. Highlight the game or software that is running, then press the Menu button on the Xbox One controller.
  3. In the pop-up menu, select Quit to close the software.

Now that these games are closed, you will probably notice that your speeds will increase. This will not only help when you are downloading an item but also when you are playing a game and want it to load faster. 

Microsoft Xbox One S 1Tb Console - White [Discontinued]

Do Xbox Games Download Faster In Sleep Mode?

One of the best features of Xbox consoles is the vast array of games available to purchase via the digital storefront. While downloading games has its benefits, time spent waiting to download a game can sometimes be a little frustrating. Especially if you are impatient to start playing.

This may lead you to wonder if these games actually download faster in sleep mode. You obviously want to play these games sooner rather than later, but is this faster?

Games do download faster in sleep mode than if you are playing the Xbox. This is because the Xbox can use all of its power to download the game rather than sharing its power to run a game and download a new one. 

Many people will download their games in sleep mode simply because it is faster. Other people will do it because they want to save energy while they download certain games and do not want to leave the device on if they are not playing it. 

Downloading the game in sleep mode will not only make it download faster, but it will help keep the device cool while it is downloading the new game. You do not want your Xbox to overheat, and having it in sleep mode will help keep things cool while your new game is downloading. 

Why Do Some Xbox Downloads Take So Long?

If slow Xbox One download speeds are keeping you down, you’ve come to the right place. With so many household appliances running on WiFi, it’s sometimes hard to figure out why some devices don’t perform as quickly as they ought to.

Downloads normally take so long because the file size being downloaded is quite large. They can also take so long because you have software running in the background. 

As luck would have it, learning how to fix or avoid slow download speeds is a matter of simple console upkeep. There are a couple of things that Xbox One owners can do to speed up downloads.

These problems can usually be solved by closing the software or restarting the system. If your system is still slow, it may simply be your internet speed. 

Microsoft Xbox One X 1Tb Console With Wireless Controller: Xbox One X Enhanced, Hdr, Native 4K, Ultra Hd (Discontinued)

Other Ways To Download Xbox Games Faster

There are a variety of other things that you can do to speed up the downloads on your Xbox. The video above gave a specific method that works well for many people and is something that you should certainly check out and see if it helps you. 

Another way to speed up downloads is to hardwire your Xbox to your modem/router rather than connecting wirelessly.

You will ALWAYS get faster speeds when using an ethernet cord rather than wireless so if you are close enough to the modem/router then you should hardwire your console to it and enjoy the increased speeds.

Another option is to increase the internet speeds that you currently get by either changing providers or see if your current one offers faster speeds. I recently upgraded from 50MB to 500MB for only an extra $10 a month so changing providers and increasing your speed won’t necessarily be expensive and it can help out your download speeds tremendously. 

Xbox Live Gold: 12 Month Membership [Digital Code]

How To Restart Your Xbox One Console?

If none of the above things fix the speed on your console it might be time to try and restart your console entirely. While most people know how to restart their Xbox console, you may be having issues understanding exactly how to do it. Do you need to use the console, or can you do it from the controller? 

Restarting your Xbox One console is not that hard to do. You may restart it by following these steps. 

  1. Press and hold the Xbox button on your controller.
  2. When the menu pops up, select Restart Console.
  3. Select Restart one more time. The system will suspend any downloads, shut down, and then boot back up.

There are many reasons you would want to restart your Xbox One. One of the biggest reasons is that the console is having issues and a soft reset will normally fix any issues like this. This is true which is why most people know how to restart their Xbox One. 

If you want your games to be downloading all of the time then you will want to make sure that you have Instant On Mode enabled on your Xbox. I will go into more detail about that feature next.

Xbox Series S – Fortnite & Rocket League Bundle

What Is Instant On Mode On The Xbox?

The Xbox One is equipped with 2 power modes: Instant On mode and Energy-saving mode. While the energy-saving mode fully turns off the console with no capability to download any files or receive updates of any app or video game.

The Instant On mode enables the download or game updates when the console is considered to be in sleep mode. When you enable the Instant On mode, the power button of the Xbox console shuts down major parts of its functions; however, it puts the console in sleep or standby mode and allows it to perform some background tasks. 

It only takes 2 seconds to be operational with Instant On mode and allows downloading of games or apps from the internet or the disc drive while the console is “off” Downloading apps or games on Instant On mode increases the rate of download speeds compared to when you are using the console but whether it increases it vs having your console on but idle is debatable. 

You can easily put any app or video game on download before going to bed and have it fully downloaded in the morning (assuming it doesn’t get an error part way through and stop).

You don’t need to wait for long hours to get your download completed and you can keep your apps or games up to date as well. 

Microsoft - Xbox One S 500GB Console - White - ZQ9-00028 (Renewed)

How To Setup Instant On Mode On Your Xbox

If you want to set up the Instant On power mode on the Xbox, you need to perform the following steps:

  • Select the Menu button from the controller and press it.
  • Navigate left to select the Next option, choose the Settings option, and press on the Power and Startup box.
  • Go to Power mode in Power options and select the button marked with “A” on your controller to choose between the two power modes i.e. Instant On mode and energy-saving mode.

Following the above-mentioned steps will allow you to turn on the Instant On mode and then you can test it out vs leaving the Xbox on but idle. 

Features Of The Xbox Instant On mode

The Instant On mode of your Xbox provides several advantages to its users, which enhances their updating and downloading experience of various apps and games and does it smoothly.

Using this mode not only can speed up the downloading process of larger files but also allows important updates to be downloaded on your Xbox when it is in standby mode. 

Some of the other features of the Instant On mode are: 

  • Using Kinect, you can enable the feature of turning on the console with your voice by saying the keyword “Xbox on”.
  • If the Instant On mode is enabled, the Xbox console will automatically download the updates for your apps or games. If the console downloads a dashboard update for you, then it will be automatically installed for you as well.
  • You can easily resume or suspend most of the games on your Xbox, which will keep the game progress saved and allows you to pick up the game from where you left off without needing to load it up when you turn on the console again.
  • Any downloads will continue to progress until all the files are completely downloaded even after the console is turned “off”.
  • If you have set your console as the home Xbox and you have purchased a game via remotely, it will right away start downloading.
  • It is easy to wake up the console from its sleep mode remotely using the Xbox app function on your PC.
  • Turning on the console from sleep mode will take only a few seconds to get the dashboard on the screen much longer if it is entirely off.

BENGOO G9700 Gaming Headset Headphones for PS4 PS5 Xbox One PC Controller, Noise Canceling Over Ear Headphones with Mic, White LED Light, Bass Surround Sound for Gamecube Xbox 360 Game Boy

What Is Xbox Sleep Mode?

Technically, the Xbox offers more than one kind of standby mode. There is the Energy-saving power mode, which is designed, as you’d expect, to save energy. It takes longer for the console to boot up after you turn it back on – up to 45 seconds.

It also offers something known as sleep mode. If you have just purchased your Xbox, you are probably curious to try it out and figure out what exactly this sleep mode does. 

Sleep mode is similar to putting your Xbox on standby. Rather than switching it off completely, sleep mode will keep your console connected to the internet, but not actually turned on. 

Another option, the one used to download games while this Xbox is on standby, is the Instant-on mode. As the name suggests, this will switch your console on much faster, taking under 5 seconds.

The benefit here is that games and applications will continue installing and updating, even when the console is off. It does consume more power than the energy-saving mode, but it will save you time when you want to play.

Microsoft Xbox Series S Console - 512GB (Renewed)


Downloading the contents of large games or files on your Xbox can be a slow and tiresome process but once you figure out whether Instant On mode or leaving the Xbox idle works best for you and your situation you should be able to speed up your downloading process. 

Instant On mode will not only increase the downloading speed of your Xbox over having to do it manually but it also provides you with automatically updated applications.

Keeping your files on download before going to bed by using this feature will save you time and you can get to play your latest game the next morning in most cases. 

Downloading games and apps when your Xbox is “off” or idle is always faster than downloading your games while you are using the console but the only way to know if downloading in Instant On mode is faster than when your console is on but not being used is to test it out yourself.