You probably haven’t been able to miss the news that the Xbox Series S was officially revealed this week. It began with rumours, and then Microsoft came out and told everyone that the console existed. They also revealed that it will cost $299, and launch on November 10. For the release date to be so close and us only now be hearing about it is unprecedented, which is exactly what Microsoft wanted. Another unprecedented move is the way in which you can buy an Xbox Series S or Series X, via a payment plan.
We’ve discussed the Xbox All Access payment plan before. Initially it looked like a way for the company to produce new consoles each year, and keep a continuous revenue stream coming from the entire install base. However, with the announcement and reveal of this next-generation of consoles, it’s looking a lot more like a way to get as many consoles out there as possible.
Paying for a new console is one of the biggest barriers consumers have. It’s not every year that you can justify spending $400-$500 on a new entertainment system. This year will almost certainly be harder for a lot of people, because the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has hit so many so hard. But this payment plan could make it possible to still get a new console without breaking the bank.
The data we have right now tells us that you can pick up an Xbox Series S for $25 per month, and a Series X for $35 per month. As well as the console, you’ll get a Game Pass Ultimate subscription, which provides all the games you could possibly need. Sony has no equivalent, at least at the time of writing, meaning that you’ll need to pay the full price for the PlayStation 5 when it launches. As far as we know.
I believe that Microsoft could take the next console generation with this payment plan. So many consumers will opt for it over buying the console outright. It’s a manageable monthly cost, something we’re all used to with the increased expense of smartphones. As long as the issue of ownership doesn’t leave you without a console at the end of the contract, Microsoft could sell more consoles than they have in stock as soon as they’re available for pre-order.
Sony really needs to step up and make a move now, or it could all be over before it’s even started for them.