On 1 June 2020, Samsung introduced a new subscription service in the US called Samsung Access, letting users pay a monthly fee to own the latest Samsung Galaxy smartphone and upgrade more regularly.
It looks as though Samsung is taking a leaf out of Apple’s book with the introduction of Samsung Access, which grants customers possession of a new Samsung Galaxy smartphone, the company’s Premium Care service, 1TB of Microsoft OneDrive cloud storage and access to the Microsoft Office 365 app suite across up to five devices.
How much does Samsung Access cost?
As of right now, Samsung Access for Mobile covers the company’s latest flagship phones; namely the Galaxy S20, Galaxy S20+ and Galaxy S20 Ultra. Depending on which phone takes your fancy effects how much you pay each month.
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The S20 costs $37-a-month, the S20+ $42-a-month and the S20 Ultra $48-a-month. These prices reflect the lowest storage configurations available for each device but you can pay more to pick up an S20+ with 512GB of internal space, as opposed to the base 128GB.
All of the devices available on Samsung Access are also unlocked and support 5G. Depending on the colourway you pick may also affect the phone’s ship date.
What else comes with Samsung Access?
In addition to the phone itself and access to those handy Microsoft services, Access also includes accidental damage protection, 24/7 technical support and next-day, no-contact delivery for replacement phones.
What are the basic terms of a Samsung Access subscription?
Provided you’ve paid for the service for at least three months, you can cancel your subscription without incurring any fees (it’s a $100 to cancel anytime before that initial three months) and what’s more, you can choose to upgrade your device every nine months (or soon if, again, you fork out an additional $100).
Is this the future of Samsung phone ownership?
It’s interesting to see Samsung toy with new retail and payment models in 2020 that, for the time being, centre around its most expensive handsets.
With waning sales in the premium smartphone market, compounded by the effects of the global pandemic, it’s not surprising that the company is looking for new ways to entice customers into paying for its latest handsets, especially when the Galaxy S line all now dance around the £/$1000 mark quite happily.
It’ll also be interesting to see whether Samsung decides to include more affordable handsets within Samsung Access and whether newcomers, like the hotly-anticipated Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Series will be immediately available on the service at launch.
Spreading the cost, while not tying customers into a contract too heavily seems like a smart start but raises questions about sustainability from both a financial and environmental standpoint.
We’ve reached out to Samsung to confirm whether or not Samsung Access is coming to other markets, including the UK, anytime soon and will update this piece as and when we hear back.