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    Posted: 18 July 2009 07:02 AM #31

    danthemason - 18 July 2009 09:40 AM

    . A friend in Texas refers to this condition as” A diamond in a goat’s ass.”

    I’m fond of colorful expressions like that. What others can you guys come up with? I’ll start off with a few:

    - Lipstick on a pig.

    - Polishing a turd.

    - Whipped cream on road apple.

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    Throughout all my years of investing I’ve found that the big money was never made in the buying or the selling. The big money was made in the waiting. ? Jesse Livermore

         
  • Posted: 18 July 2009 09:05 AM #32

    Well another Texas expression from the construction business refers to a piece of work that is so poorly executed as to be offensive to the eye.

    ” That looks like hammered shit.”

         
  • Posted: 18 July 2009 12:49 PM #33

    From a comment on MacDailyNews.com by “Devon”:

    The Big question is how is Microsoft going to get the property managers and owners of the high-end shopping centers that most of Apple’s store are in to let Microsoft open a Not High-End Non-Retail Store?
    I’ve worked with the owners and Managers of Three of the shopping centers here in the Phoenix Metro Area that have Apple Stores and they would not rent space to Microsoft. It would be like renting space to Wal-Mart for a Super Center in the same center that you have a Saks 5th Ave. and a Neiman Marcus in, It’s just not done. And as allowing Microsoft to rent space next to or even in the same general area, this is a no go even in the largest of Malls lease contracts with stores like Apples are full of legal restrictions on how close managers are allowed to rent space to competitors, It’s all standard to Malls and High Profile store’s like the Apple Stores managers do not want to piss off, because they bring traffic to the mall or center.
    The only stores that Microsoft might get close to are some of Apple’s Flagship stores that are in Building that Apple as bought or leased that aren’t in a Mall or Shopping Center setting. But, Apple Flagship stores are Mecca’s for Apple buyers Microsoft opening a small Radio Shack sized store next to or in proximity to a Flagship Apple Store would be a joke.
    Microsoft opening a “Brand Awareness Center”(TradeMark 2009 Demon)” anywhere close to an Apple Store is a joke. I’ll give Microsoft 18 months before they pull the plug. They’ll also open fewer then 10 stores.

         
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    Posted: 18 July 2009 07:48 PM #34

    danthemason - 17 July 2009 11:55 PM

    Actually Bill, this is called the ?clustering effect? well known in retail.

    And Mr. Balmer can be the pivot man in this Circle… oh wrong joke. Never mind

    Oh, you didn’t.  :oh:  Ugh!  :bugeyed: Hurk! Oh! Ack! I need Bactine for my brain! I need mental floss! Somebody get me a drill so that I can get that image out!  :-(

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    Just remember one thing….

         
  • Posted: 18 July 2009 09:56 PM #35

    Let’s see, multiple brands, cheap products, and know-nothing employees.  So these M$ stores will essentially have all the charm, atmosphere, value, quality, and expertise one encounters in a Radio Shack store.

         
  • Posted: 19 July 2009 10:30 AM #36

    Zeke - 19 July 2009 12:56 AM

    Let’s see, multiple brands, cheap products, and know-nothing employees.  So these M$ stores will essentially have all the charm, atmosphere, value, quality, and expertise one encounters in a Radio Shack store.


    I think the foot traffic will be from people who want technical support for free, as phone support calls to MS cost $$$.

    Aside from that, MS retail will underscore the ineptitude.  And I want to see the staff have t-shirts wear “I’m a PC.”  I would walk by just for the laughs.

         
  • Posted: 19 July 2009 10:32 AM #37

    danthemason - 18 July 2009 12:05 PM

    Well another Texas expression from the construction business refers to a piece of work that is so poorly executed as to be offensive to the eye.

    ” That looks like hammered shit.”

    Now THAT is funny…I can hear the drawl in that one.  I think I’ll use that if I make it inside MS retail and spot a DELL laptop.

         
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    Posted: 19 July 2009 10:42 AM #38

    TanToday - 16 July 2009 01:22 PM

    ...time and history proves that the more of the “same” you have at the same location, the better ALL of them will do.

    Put that together with the question of “What will they sell,” and I wonder if they’re wanting to cut into the market of Best Buy and similar electronics-based stores.

    And even if this venture turns out a huge “loss leader,” MS can surely afford it, especially if it draws publicity as Apple Stores have—for example, getting people in a Mac forum all abuzz over it. They may just write off any losses as the cost of advertising.

    cb

         
  • Posted: 19 July 2009 11:55 AM #39

    Along that line MS has a long string of advertising write offs. Zune, Vista, Yahoo acquisition…...........  Add your favorite.

         
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    Posted: 19 July 2009 04:59 PM #40

    danthemason - 19 July 2009 02:55 PM

    Along that line MS has a long string of advertising write offs. Zune, Vista, Yahoo acquisition…...........  Add your favorite.


    Live.com, which is now called Bing. Maybe they realized that people like me, were using their cash back program to buy Apple products.

    But the last thing Microsoft needs, are people doing hands-on comparison shopping, at Apple stores and their trained staff. Just another bad move on Microsoft’s part.

     


    :apple:

         
  • Posted: 19 July 2009 05:45 PM #41

    The problem with Microsoft is its Windows products are sold indirectly to consumers via of OEM sales. Unlike the enterprise market there is not a robust upgrade cycle among consumers when new operating systems are released. The vast majority of consumers upgrade to a new Windows OS when they replace their PCs.

    There’s been very little direct contact between Microsoft and consumers. The company has locked itself into a tight box. It has sucked virtually all margin on consumers PCs for itself leaving the OEMs to fend for themselves in price wars. If Microsoft desires higher Windows margins than the margin on PCs must rise. That’s not easy when the focus has been on price and little differentiation on hardware offered by different OEMs.

    In general Microsoft retail stores will not be a crowd draw so they must be parasitic in order to to be effective for the company. This creates a problem for mall operators and complicates the formula for a return on investment.

    Microsoft appears to be so focused on redeeming itself following the Vista boondoggle taking steps to develop direct consumer contact may be seen as an imperative.

    One of the bigger challenges involved is the PC market is being overshadowed and displaced by handheld mobile computing devices. Microsoft has yet to develop a clear strategy to compete in this market while sales of handheld devices (smartphones, iPods, Kindles, the pending Mac tablet, etc.) drive revenue and the remaining margins from the PC market.

    Both Gateway and Dell have failed miserably in developing retail store or mall presence strategies. I don’t think Microsoft will be anymore successful in the effort. If Microsoft is interested in achieving success through a mall presence strategy, opening stores in fall 2009 will not be effective for the Christmas shopping season and there’s still no answer from MSFT to the iPhone phenomenon as other smartphone makers eschew Windows Mobile in favor of more attractive operating systems (android, WebOS, iPhone OS 3.0, etc.).

    The company has money to burn. Let’s see how much is spent on this consumer contact experiment.

         
  • Posted: 19 July 2009 06:13 PM #42

    DawnTreader - 19 July 2009 08:45 PM

    The company has money to burn. Let’s see how much is spent on this consumer contact experiment.

    This is unfortunate DT take, for instance, Microsoft’s other current “big success” the XBOX. The Microsoft fanbois love to say how well this is doing. BUT this is only successful because of the massive write-downs that they have had. So it is possible for Microsoft to “fail” at the store and yet still make them appear to be a success. It is assumed that W7 will have some takers, as opposed to Vista, which means that there will be yet more money in the pot for them to throw at whatever they deem fit.

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  • Posted: 19 July 2009 07:10 PM #43

    Still, the market monetization model is moving away from PCs.  The margins are moving to handheld devices in the consumer market. No retail store effort will revive high margin PC Windows sales with consumers outside of avid gamers and few creative pros that might stick with Windows for whatever reason.

    On the Windows side of the fence the college student market has been lost to the Mac and the consumer market is in a declining state. Where’s the benefit of a direct consumer appeal without attractive product to offer in stores for consumers?

    The fourth calendar quarter is all about the iPhone and the iPod. What does Microsoft have to offer consumers other than an effort to revive sales in concert with the release of Windows 7?

         
  • Posted: 20 July 2009 08:26 AM #44

    Unless they’re updating Flight Simulator, Midtown Madness or Monster Truck Madness, I can’t imagine what they have to offer… Zune? The maker of iPods and iPhones sell them next door.

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  • Posted: 20 July 2009 09:48 AM #45

    yakirz - 20 July 2009 11:26 AM

    Unless they’re updating Flight Simulator, Midtown Madness or Monster Truck Madness, I can’t imagine what they have to offer… Zune? The maker of iPods and iPhones sell them next door.

    Midtown Madness - now that takes me back. grin

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