Pop on your rumour hat: dubbed ‘Xbox All Access’, a new service may offer people a different route into the otherwise expensive up-front world of console gaming – by operating a pay-monthly contract, ala the world of mobile phones.
Sources have informed both Windows Central and the Verge, separately, about the service. It’s said to provide tiered access at different price points – so an Xbox One S would be cheaper per month than an Xbox One X – and contracts would include Xbox Live Gold and Xbox Game Pass in the price.
As for prices, reports have run from $22 (£17) a month up to $34.99 (£27) a month, each over a two year period, and would be available from Microsoft retail stores. After the contracts are up, the console would be kept by the user – again, just like in the world of mobiles: you pay less per month, but a lot more over a period of time.
It should be noted that the rumoured service is, as far as anyone has so far said, limited to the US for the time being. But – as with everything Microsoft rolls out – if it proves a success, there’s no reason it couldn’t come to the UK and allow those without the hundreds of pounds usually required to buy a console to get involved.
A subsidised Xbox 360 was released in the US by Microsoft all the way back in 2012, with MCV intimating this meant the company was likely to take the same approach with its successor (still then dubbed Xbox 720, natch). Took a while, but looks like we might well have been right there.