The Windows 11 preview can dynamically change your refresh rate to save battery

You'll still get all the benefits of a 120Hz display while scrolling and inking.


If you recently bought a Windows laptop, there's a good chance it may include a high refresh rate display. As far as recent computer advances go, it's one of the more noticeable upgrades you can get since they help make every interaction, including scrolling, look and feel significantly smoother. But turning up the refresh rate on your laptop's display is also a major battery drain. You can get the best of both worlds by manually switching between different refresh rates, but that's time-consuming to do and so Microsoft is introducing a new feature called Dynamic refresh rate (DRR) with the first Windows 11 Insider preview

As the name suggests, DRR will lower your laptop's refresh rate to 60Hz when you're doing things like writing emails and documents and then increase it to 120Hz when inking and scrolling so that those interactions feel more instantaneous. As of today, support for the feature is mainly limited to a handful of apps from Microsoft and Adobe. For instance, your computer's refresh rate will increase to a faster refresh rate when you're inking and scrolling in Office. However, Microsoft says more apps will support the feature over time. One thing to note is DDR won't turn on while you're playing a game, so no need to worry about putting you at a disadvantage in a competitve multiplayer match.

To try out DRR, you'll need a laptop that features a display with support for a variable refresh rate of at least 120Hz. You'll also need a graphics driver that supports the feature. As such, even if you have a laptop that meets the above requirements, you may not be able to enable DRR after installing the first Windows 11 Insider build. That's something Microsoft says it's working with manufacturers to address. But if your laptop has the necessary driver support, you'll find the option to turn on DRR in the Systems menu.