What is Xbox All Access and how does it work?

By Aaron Potter | | 7380 |

One of the biggest barriers to purchasing a video game console is obviously cost. Especially at the start of a new console generation when you’re asked to fork out full price, getting to play the latest games usually means having to pay a hefty fee for the privilege of continuing in your favourite video game franchise. Luckily, Microsoft is changing how purchasing a new Xbox console is done thanks to its new service: Xbox All Access.

What is Xbox All Access? It’s essentially a way to avoid paying for an Xbox Series S or Xbox Series X in one lump sum, instead giving players the ability to spread the cost via a low monthly fee. However, the major way Xbox All Access differs from most credit options is that in addition to Microsoft’s next-gen console it also grants you 24-month access to Xbox Game Pass Ultimate. This guarantees that applicants to Xbox All Access will always have games to play over the two-year period they’re paying it off.

Xbox All Access is a special upgrade offer available here in the UK from two different retailers, GAME and Smyths Toy Store. So, if you like the sound of not paying a hefty upfront cost for the successor console to Xbox One – be it the 8K-capable Xbox Series X or digital-only Xbox Series S – read on to learn more about the plan’s specifics.

The ultimate upgrade option for Xbox Series S | X

Ideal for prospective or existing Xbox players that are craving a more flexible way to pay, Xbox All Access wipes away the traditional upfront cost of buying a console and instead spreads the cost. Here in the UK, there’s an Xbox All Access plan relating to both the Xbox Series S or Xbox Series X, each including one Xbox One Wireless controller, a 24-month subscription to Xbox Game Pass Ultimate and, of course, the ability to pay for their next-gen console over a two-year period rather than all at once as tradition.

Xbox All Access was originally introduced towards the end of 2019 as a way for anyone wanting an Xbox One to secure themselves an Xbox Series console. However, now that Microsoft has officially lifted the lid on both the Series S and Series X, Xbox All Access no longer sees you receive an Xbox One beforehand and is instead about starting off with the new box.

So, to sum up, here’s what an Xbox All Access subscription gets you:

  • An Xbox Console
    • Your choice of either an Xbox Series S OR Xbox Series X
    • One Xbox Wireless controller.
  • 24-month membership to Xbox Game Pass Ultimate
    • A subscription that combines the benefits of Xbox Live Gold and Xbox Game Pass, giving players access to a rotating library of 100 games, online multiplayer access and free monthly games you can keep.

Xbox All Access has two payment plan options

Now of course, offering players two different Xbox Series consoles dictates that there must be two different payment plan options. You’ll receive all the above with any of them, it’s just that they’re 8priced slightly differently. The Xbox Series X plan will cost £24.99 per month for 24 months and the Xbox Series S plan will cost £20.99 per month for 24 months. The latter console is priced £200 cheaper than the X’s £449, hence the slight difference in price.

Anyone intending to purchase an Xbox Series S | X through Xbox All Access will be subject to a credit check, which when approved will begin the monthly subscription plan. As mentioned earlier, Microsoft has chosen to exclusively partner up with GAME and Smyths Toy Store here in this United Kingdom so the offer is only available through them.

Here’s an infographic breaking down how Xbox All Access works relevant to each:

 

Where to sign up to Xbox All Access

In terms of where you can opt into the service, GAME should be your one-stop shop as one of only two UK retailers sanctioned by Microsoft to offer Xbox All Access subscriptions. Simply head on over to its official website when Series S | X pre-orders go LIVE! on September 22nd, select the console you want to purchase, and you’ll have the console secured ready for launch following a brief financial check.

Opting for GAME or Smyths Toy Store’s Xbox All Access payment plan will see subscribers also gain 24 months of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate in addition to their preferred Series X or One S console. Xbox Game Pass Ultimate combines the benefits of both Xbox Live Gold and Xbox Game Pass, gifting players access to a rotating library of 100 games, two free Xbox One games to play every month and also the ability to play online against others. The 24 months of Xbox Game Pass spans the ownership cycle of the Xbox Series X | S via Xbox All Access. After your two-year period is fulfilled, you’ll need to subscribe to Xbox Game Pass Ultimate separately.

Is Xbox All Access worth it?

We believe so, yes. Despite Xbox All Access requiring players to keep themselves locked into a Credit program for a two-year period, providing you can maintain these payments you actually end up saving money compared to if you bought an Xbox Series S | X console outright alongside a 24-month Xbox Game Pass Subscription.

Here’s the financial breakdown of buying an Xbox Series X and Game Pass Ultimate subscription alone:

  • Xbox Series X – £449
  • 24 months Xbox Game Pass Ultimate – £263.76
  • Total = £712.76

And when comparing that to buying both through Xbox All Access:

  • Xbox Series X + 24 months Xbox Game Pass Ultimate @ £28.99 per month/24 months
  • Total = £695.76

Here’s the financial breakdown of buying an Xbox Series S and Game Pass Ultimate subscription alone:

  • Xbox Series S – £249
  • 24 months Xbox Game Pass Ultimate – £263.76
  • Total = £512.76

And when comparing that to buying both through Xbox All Access:

  • Xbox Series S + 24 months Xbox Game Pass Ultimate @ £20.99 per month/24 months
  • Total = £503.76

How do existing Xbox All Access members upgrade?

All of the above applies to anyone intending to purchasing an Xbox through the All Access program from Sepetmeber 22nd, when Series S and Series X pre-orders officially go live. However, if you subscribed last year during the system’s original rendition, to upgrade to your choice of Xbox Series S or X , you’ll need to return your Xbox One to the same store you made your original Xbox All Access purchase. Microsoft has stated that the console you bring back needs to be in good condition and in working order.

Lastly, you’ll need to remain “in good standing” with Swedish bank Klarna, the financing partner Microsoft has opted for here in the UK, to upgrade to the Xbox Series eco-system and continue on the agreed credit plan. If you opted for the Xbox One X console bundle you can upgrade early to the new Microsoft console after  only 12 months – that was a limited time offer at the time, so it’s worth checking what plan you chose at the time.