For players planning on buying FIFA 21 for the Xbox One or PlayStation 4, Electronic Arts will make it possible for them to get the corresponding next-gen version for free. That said, it's going to work similar to EA's next-gen upgrade arrangement for Madden NFL 21, which means there are a number of caveats that'll have a bearing on which platforms and formats players will want to pick for their current-gen purchases.
Thankfully, EA's made the rules and benefits of FIFA 21's Dual Entitlement offer pretty clear. First, it only extends to upgrading from PS4 to PS5 or from Xbox One to Xbox Series X. Second, EA specifies that players will be able to upgrade to the next-gen version for free "up until the launch of FIFA 22," so there is an expiration date built into the offer.
Also, those playing on PS4 will want to consider which PS5 they're eyeing. Purchasing a physical copy of FIFA 21 will also guarantee Dual Entitlement, but only if the corresponding next-gen console has a disc drive. Currently, the PS5's the only next-gen console confirmed to have two versions, one being a no-drive Digital Edition, so FIFA players who are planning on purchasing that version should consider buying FIFA 21 on PS4 digitally to secure the free upgrade.
The nice part of this upgrade program is that it looks like FIFA 21 Ultimate Team progress and in-game purchases will exist seamlessly across the console generations: "All progress you make or content you acquire within FIFA 21 Ultimate Team (including players, items, coins, FIFA Points, match record, and leaderboard placement), as well as all progression in VOLTA FOOTBALL will transfer from PlayStation 4 to PlayStation 5 and back, or Xbox One to Xbox Series X and back." Beyond that, progress for all other modes including Online Seasons and Pro Clubs will stay tied to the console you're playing on at that time.
Currently, that's a better arrangement than the Dual Entitlement program for Madden NFL 21. EA's guide for Madden warns that progress in its Ultimate Team offering and other modes "may not transfer" back to current-gen consoles, advising that players "check back for more information closer to launch."
Yesterday's EA Play Live presentation didn't have too much news on what FIFA 20 players can expect to change in FIFA 21. Throughout the month of August, though, EA will roll out news on what's coming to Career Mode, Ultimate Team, Volta, and more.