Update on April 27: The Work and Play bundle now includes a $60 gift card for movies, music, games, and apps from the Windows and Xbox Stores in place of the Xbox Music Pass. The offer will be available at least through the end of June.
Original story is below.
Microsoft is testing a new Work & Play Bundle that features four of its subscriptions: Office 365 Home, Xbox Live Gold, Xbox Music Pass, and Skype Unlimited World + WiFi. A one-year commitment will set you back $199, but you can only buy it by going to a physical Microsoft Store in the U.S.
Let’s do the math, shall we? Office 365 Home costs $9.99 per month, or $119.88 for the year. 12 months of Xbox Live Gold costs $59.99 while a 12-month Xbox Music Pass costs $99.90. Skype Unlimited World is $13.99 per month, though you can get the first month for free, so that’s $153.89.
All of that adds up to $433.66. So yes, $200 is more than a 50 percent discount.
Here’s exactly what you get for $199, as first spotted by WinBeta:
- Office 365 Home: Get work done anytime, anywhere, and on virtually any device. Includes Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and more. Also comes with 1TB OneDrive online storage so you can manage and share your photos, videos, and documents.
- Xbox Live Gold: Get the most advanced multiplayer, free games, exclusive discounts on games in the Xbox Store, and more.
- Xbox Music Pass: Get unlimited access to millions of songs. Stream ad-free or download as much as you like. Listen on your PC, tablet, phone, Xbox, and on the web.
- Skype Unlimited World + WiFi: Get unlimited minutes to call friends and family around the globe from your laptop, tablet, phone, or TV. Get WiFi access at over 2 million hotspots worldwide – connect to the internet from virtually any device.
The fine print will of course tell you that multiplayer between Xbox One and Xbox 360 is not supported, the Xbox Music Pass only supports streaming on Xbox and the Web, while the unlimited calling is limited by a fair usage policy. All in all though, these are restrictions that each of the subscriptions come with anyway.
What’s really interesting here is not that Microsoft is offering such a deal, but that it’s piloting it. Microsoft isn’t sure if its customers really do want all four subscriptions, and if they’re willing to fork over such a large sum all at once. As the Where to Buy page says, you have until January 4, 2015 to vote with your wallet and tell the company what you think.
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