Published: Mon, August 07, 2017
Hi-Tech | By Joan Schultz

You can now pre-order Microsoft's Surface Pen in new colors

You can now pre-order Microsoft's Surface Pen in new colors

Following the introduction of the Surface as a Service program a year ago, which provided Surface devices to businesses on subscription plans, Microsoft has debuted a similar offering aimed at consumers.

By providing monthly payment options to purchase the Surface machines, Microsoft is doing the right thing to "lower the barriers to entry for what are fairly pricey machines for the most part, as Microsoft has stayed firmly above the fray with its Surface line, in contrast to the much lower overall average selling prices of Windows PCs", he said. Microsoft's new Surface Plus plan acts sort of like a plan you might expect from a phone carrier, letting you pay off your machine over 24 months and trading in every 18 months.

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The Surface Plus for Business plan is managed by LiftForward, "a leading software provider and licensed online lender to small and medium size businesses", according to Microsoft's FAQ. "Along with the Surface laptops and Surface Studio, the 55" Surface Hub is also included. Microsoft's announcement seemed to imply that the plan includes "Microsoft Complete for Business", a warranty program, but it may just be an option.

For instance, the entry-level Surface Pro configuration with a core m3 and 4GB of RAM costs about $799, but under the Surface Plus plan, the total payment would be broken down to $33.29 per month for 24 months. Under the Surface Plus plan, the ability to get the Microsoft Complete warrantee protection is an additional cost option. You can also upgrade devices after 18 months. Microsoft has not stated when, or if, it plans to roll the programmes out internationally. The Surface Laptop launched two weeks before the quarter ended, minimizing the impact on the company's quarterly results.

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Surface Plus members also get what Microsoft calls "best in class" service and support from Microsoft Stores. Businesses can opt for an 18-, 24-, or 30-month contract and upgrade their devices after 12 months on the 24-month plan or after 18 months on the 30-month plan, as well as "expand or reduce their fleet mid-term". As an added benefit, Surface Plus will also get you a 30-day, no-questions-asked return policy on your Surface, as well as a year of free in-store technical support.

Check out Microsoft's blog post for more details.

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