Xbox All Access could settle the next-gen console war

With the announcement of the Xbox Series S and Xbox Series X, Microsoft's Xbox All Access program has stepped back into the spotlight. Introduced a couple of years ago as a monthly payment program for those looking to get an Xbox One, Xbox All Access allows people to split the cost of a console and a subscription to Xbox Game Pass Ultimate up over 24 months and pay it off over time. Now, Microsoft says that it will offer new payment plans for the Xbox Series S and Xbox Series X as well.

That could be good news for a lot of people out there, especially those who have their eye on the Xbox Series X. Earlier today, Microsoft announced that the Xbox Series X will run $499, and while that price point wasn't entirely unexpected, it's still a lot of money to be dropping all at once. By offering the Xbox Series X through Xbox All Access, Microsoft may find some sales where it otherwise wouldn't have – and it may tempt people who are on the fence between the Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5 over to the Xbox yard.

In any case, the Xbox All Access page on the Xbox website confirms that the monthly subscription price for the Xbox Series X will be $34.99, while the Xbox Series S will cost $24.99 per month. Both consoles come with 24 months of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, and neither of them have an upfront cost associated with them. You'll also pay 0% APR on these purchases, assuming that you're approved for a line of credit from Citizens One, the bank that Microsoft is working with for Xbox All Access.

It's a good deal, assuming that you make your payments on time and pay off the Xbox you get in that 24 month period. Though Xbox All Access essentially forces you into an Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscription for two years, that comes with a subscription to Xbox Live Gold, which is necessary for playing Xbox games online. Later this year, Project xCloud game streaming will be added to Game Pass Ultimate, and Microsoft confirmed today that EA Play will be joining the service as well.

So, if you can't pay for an Xbox Series X or Series S all at once but can commit to two years of monthly payments, Xbox All Access could be the way to go. Some existing Xbox All Access customers are even eligible to upgrade their subscriptions when these new consoles launch, assuming they've already made 18 or more payments. Xbox All Access could prove to be a difference maker for Microsoft in the next generation, and the existence of this program could prompt Sony to roll out something similar for the PlayStation 5. Stay tuned.