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Microsoft wants to make devices like the Surface Tablet, Surface Laptop, and Xbox One easier for more people to own. The company's new “All Access” plans allow you to pay for your device under a 24-month payment plan, with no up-front cost.
These payment plans are similar to the ones cellphone carriers use to encourage people to upgrade their phones. Once the 24 months are up in this case, though, the device is yours to keep.
Here's how Microsoft's All Access plans work.
The sign-up and approval process for All Access plans is relatively easy and straightforward
To get started, all you need to do is apply for a Dell Preferred Account. In your application, you'll answer questions about your housing situation and employment status, and you'll have to confirm you are who you say you are. At the end of the application, which should take about 5-10 minutes, you'll find out whether or not you qualify for a line of credit. You can read the full terms of the agreement here.
Once approved, you'll select the devices you want to finance. All Access Surface bundles start at $24.99 a month, and include a laptop or tablet and two years of Microsoft Office 365. Surface Tablet bundles also include Microsoft's Type Cover, a thin detachable keyboard. All Access Xbox bundles start at $21.99 a month and include either an Xbox One S or Xbox One X, a two-year subscription to Game Pass, and a two-year subscription to Xbox Live.
In some cases, buying an Xbox or Surface as an All Access plan could even save you money
If these monthly prices seem low, it's because they are.
An Xbox One S, two years of Xbox Live, and two years of Game Pass cost $659 up front. As an All Access bundle, you'd pay $21.99 a month for 24 months, or just $528, for the same bundle. That's a savings of $131.
Things look similar on the Surface side. A Surface Go, Type Cover, and two years of Office 365 cost $630 when purchased together up front. An All Access Bundle including all three costs $24.99 a month for 24 months, or $600, for a savings of $30.
All Access is a great way to finance a new console or laptop, as long as you know what you're signing up for
Microsoft's All Access plans are solid options for anyone who wants to finance a new device, and save a little money in the process. Microsoft has even included the new Surface Studio 2 that launches on November 15 as an eligible device.
Keep in mind that we're focusing what make these payment plans great options for some people, not things like interest rates and late fees. It's important to practice financial discipline, like making payments on time, and not spending more than you can afford to pay back.