Microsoft Announces 6 New Retail Store Locations

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Finally, the news that tens of people have been waiting for: Microsoft is planning to open six new retail stores in 2013 in Texas, Florida, Ohio, California, Utah, and Missouri. The new locations will bring Big Redmond up to 37 full time retail stores in the U.S., with rumors of European expansion in the works, too.

Microsoft Store Opening

A Microsoft Promo Photograph for a November 2011 Store Opening
Source: Microsoft

Jonathan Adashek, whose full title is General Manager, Communications and Strategy, Sales & Marketing Services Group, made the announcement in a blog post. Some of these locations will be conversions from popup "Holiday Stores" into full-time retail locations and "Specialty Stores."

The six new store locations:

  • The Shops at La Cantera, San Antonio, Texas
  • Dadeland Mall, Miami, Fla.
  • Beachwood Place, Beachwood, Ohio
  • Westfield San Francisco Centre, San Francisco
  • City Creek Center, Salt Lake City
  • St. Louis Galleria, St. Louis

The company did not announce time frames for the store openings or conversions, but did specify that these are merely the first six store announcements for 2013.

[Via GeekWire]

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Check out this quote from Microsoft's blog post:

We have always said that we will adjust our strategy, and open additional stores to deliver the choice, value and service our Microsoft customers have come to expect.

And this one:

We know our store associates are making an impact when our customers continually express appreciation for how our stores offer the opportunity to interact with Microsoft products that improve the way they live, work and play.

Both sentences sound remarkably defensive, or perhaps apologetic. It's as if Microsoft feels the need to justify its retail efforts. That could be due to the somewhat muted reception the stores have gotten from the public. Despite Apple's tiny share of the PC industry and minority share of the smartphone industry, the company's retail stores are packed.

Microsoft? Not so much.

Certainly Apple is top tablet dog, but the company's retail stores have been packed for eleven years now, long before iPhone or iPad. Our point is simply that the language of the blog post is curiously un-triumphant.

Microsoft is a huge company that makes massive profits. Opening its own retail stores might have been following in Apple's footsteps (yet again), but it was still a bold step. Own it. Be proud. Don't apologize or hedge or couch. Prance about and cackle with joy at your budding retail empire.

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Comments

nygjdj

I can’t wait to see what Justin Beiber, One Direction or other teenie bopper concert tickets they’ll be giving away at the door to make people come out to the grand opening of the San Antonio store…

wab95

“Finally, the news that tens of people have been waiting for”

Bryan, that’s just mean, especially during the season of ‘peace on earth, good will toward men’ (and corporations). Besides, it’s not ‘tens’. It’s ‘dozens’.

In fairness to Big Redmond, their core strength has been enterprise. This private consumer focus, with all that attention to end user experience, play, fun and, you know, those things that make up the ‘personal’ in ‘personal computers’ (I’m quite certain that somewhere in Redmond reads a memo declaring that PC = ‘personnel computers’), is all so new and touchy-feely, new agey and Apple-like; you know, not the stuff of real computer sales.  But, if you’re MS, you’ve got to counter Apple and maintain PC hegemony.

Indeed, my interpretation of their business manoeuvres is that MS have yet to concede that we are even in a post-PC era, ergo Windows 8 and the Surface tab-book.

In short, from a Redmond-centric perspective, there is nothing wrong with MS’s consumer business plan or their retail stores. Brute force worked in the 90s for the enterprise; so why should it not work for the private consumer in the 2010s, too? It’s just moving Windows, is it not? MS will just have to keep building those retail stores until morale improves and the people come to their senses.

MS just need to make sure they keep their day job of selling to enterprise.

Lee Dronick

“Bryan, that’s just mean, especially during the season of ‘peace on earth, good will toward men’ (and corporations). “

As someone said earlier this year “Corporations are people too”

Bryan Chaffin

I give them points for trying, just as I give them points for trying something new and interesting with the interface formerly known as Metro. (I do not give them any credit for crippling Win 8 tablets by keeping that foot in the desktop world).

And your comments about brute force are quite apropos, wab. It might even work eventually.

Bryan Chaffin

I mean, come on. Look at that photo. It’s a very cool image, but it’s cool because it is creepy. It’s a creepy promo pic they published on purpose for the press to use. What’s that about?

vpndev

A few weeks ago I happened across a Microsoft store. It was in the Pentagon City mall, a seriously upscale mall close to the Pentagon and National Airport in Washington D.C. area.

The mall was busy, this being early afternoon three weeks before Christmas. But despite the ten staffers attending, there were only two shoppers a’looking.

Seriously - TWO. I have never seen an Apple store with only two customers. They’re always busy, and not just at Christmas.

So I guess they get points for trying, but trying what Apple does but without a compelling product line is not a winning strategy.

wab95

“I mean, come on. Look at that photo. It’s a very cool image, but it’s cool because it is creepy. It’s a creepy promo pic they published on purpose for the press to use. What’s that about?”

Pure Freudian: reversed image, ghosts and shadows. Users as ghosts from Windows’ past, hovering about its lifeless image; the image in reverse to suggest a reversal in its fortunes, and mere silhouettes to suggest Windows as a shadow of its former self.

Their marketing team should be sacked.

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