It's Xbox Series X and S preorder day - 3 things to know

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It's Xbox Series X and Series S pre-order day, and if you've got a few hundred dollars burning a hole in your pocket along with a hankering for a next-generation console, now's the time. Microsoft is opening up the order books for its two new consoles at 8AM PT / 11 AM ET today, September 22, for preorders in the US and Canada. Read on for three things you need to know.

Here's what Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S cost

Your big choice is deciding between Microsoft's two new Xbox versions. The Xbox Series X is the flagship, packing the most performance and the best graphical grunt. It's the model you want if you insist on 4K support, and it'll have the most memory and the most storage out of the box.

You'll also want the Xbox Series X if you still have a hankering for physical media. It's the one with a 4K UHD Blu-ray drive, so that you'll be able to load both physical discs as well as access digital titles too. It's priced at $499.

The Xbox Series S, meanwhile, is smaller, cheaper, and a little less full-featured. While it's also based on the same sort of CPU and GPU as the Series X, they're lower-power; it tops out at 1440p video, has half the storage, and is designed for digital games only. The upside of course is the price, with the Xbox Series S coming in at $299.

Here's where you can buy the new consoles

In the US, there are eight primary places to buy the Xbox Series X and Series S. The official Microsoft Store will have them, unsurprisingly, as will Amazon, Best Buy, and GameStop. Walmart, Target, Sam's Club, and Newegg are on the list as well.

Microsoft says that other retailers will have supplies of the consoles too, though of course nobody is confirming just how many will be allocated to each retailer. If the PlayStation 5 presale is anything to go by, demand is going to well outstrip supply, and that could mean not getting your console of choice on November 10 when the first deliveries start.

In Canada, meanwhile, there'll be six primary places to buy the next-generation consoles. That includes the Microsoft Store, Amazon, and Walmart, along with Best Buy, EB Games, and The Source. Other retailers may be accepting preorders too.

Here's why you should consider Xbox All Access

Typically, you'd pay upfront for a new console, but Microsoft has another option worth considering. Xbox All Access is its program for all-inclusive Xbox hardware and software, and considering the online focus that the Series S and Series X have, it makes a lot of sense – particularly if you don't have several hundred dollars spare to buy outright.

An Xbox All Access subscription gets you either an Xbox Series X or an Xbox Series S, spread out over 24 payments, plus 24 months of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate. That includes 100+ games and, later in the year, EA Play membership bundled in too. Considering Microsoft just added some huge names to its in-house studios, that Game Pass Ultimate subscription is looking even more appealing.

If you want an Xbox Series S, Xbox All Access will cost you $24.99 per month for 24 months. For an Xbox Series X, it's $34.99 per month for 24 months. Initially Xbox All Access will only be available in the US, from the Microsoft Store, Best Buy, GameStop, and Walmart; Microsoft says that it should launch in Canada as a purchase option before November 10 and the consoles' holiday launch.