The Xbox Series X price has leaked, the Xbox Series S price has been confirmed: $499.99 and $299.99 respectively. Microsoft has confirmed the pricing strategy that many were expecting, but the company is failing to focus on the best option they’ve got for next-gen: Xbox All Access.
While having options for next-gen hardware pricing is fantastic – both hardcore graphics lovers and more “I don’t give a sh*t how many pixels it has I just want to play the damn game” gamers have their individual entry points – both consoles are still pricey for a lot of people.
Instead of slapping down Five Benjamins or whatever Americans call $500 on an Xbox Series X, there’s Xbox’s All Access. For Xbox Series X, Microsoft is asking for a monthly payment of $35, Xbox Series S is just $25. In the world of phone contracts, monthly payments on PCs and laptops, Spotify subscriptions and more, this is how Xbox makes a dent in next-gen.
Xbox All Access doesn’t just give subscribers a console. Microsoft could’ve gotten away with the bare minimum, but the deal has been sweetened. The subscription comes with a bonus: Xbox Game Pass Ultimate! That’s Xbox Game Pass (console and PC) and Xbox Live Gold access with your console. With Xbox All Access, that Christmas present for little twins Jimmy and Jenny is not only a cool as hell next-gen console, but it’s also filled with games to download.
In an interview back in June, Xbox boss Phil Spencer explained that Xbox All Access “is going to be critical to both our launch for Xbox Series X as well as just the overall generation.” While the pricing of Sony’s PlayStation 5 isn’t yet known, although it should be tomorrow, there is currently no way for lower income families to get their hands on the console without saving up for a long time.
With Xbox being well aware of the financial struggles of thousands of families as the ongoing pandemic continues to cause mass layoffs and redundancies, it’s a necessity for the Xbox brand to not only be priced competitively but also be sold with accessibility in mind.
Accessibility is more than software or hardware that helps to combat mobility, sight and hearing issues. Accessibility comes in many forms. For example, Microsoft’s Project xCloud is a way for those without the space or money for consoles to play full AAA releases on their phones.
Xbox All Access is the most accessible way to enter the next-gen console race, unless Sony comes in with a cheaper alternative. Microsoft should be marketing the Hell out of this, screaming it as loud as they can, because this is how Xbox thrives next-gen.