ts times like this that I feel like walking away from Microsoft for good. I remember very vividly Ballmer boasting about how Microsoft was going to get serious about the retail space. They showed off two slides indicating how much market penetration they would perform and the location of the stores. Now we’re getting confirmation that there will only be 44 Microsoft Stores by the middle of 2013.

Come on Microsoft. You have the cool new Surface family of products, a great mobile platform in Windows Phone 8, Windows 8 to showoff to the masses and of course Xbox and SmartGlass to showcase. While every mall worth visiting has an Apple store Microsoft apparently wants to play it nice and slow and miss yet another opportunity to gain a strong foothold in the consumer space.

One of the big advantages, if you talk to people close by an Apple store, is the ability to take their Apple products into an Apple store and get help. So the next time Ballmer opens his mouth in public and claims not to leave no space to Apple somebody please remind him that the retail space is still very much left to Apple and will continue to be the case for the next couple of years.

9 COMMENTS

  1. Apparently, Ballmer is waiting for some of this retail space to be zoned, drafted, prepped and finished.

    Which means it all boils down to DEVELOPERS, DEVELOPERS, DEVELOPERS!

  2. […] ts times like this that I feel like walking away from Microsoft for good. I remember very vividly Ballmer boasting about how Microsoft was going to get serious about the retail space. They showed off two slides indicating how much market penetration they would perform and the location of the stores. Now we’re getting confirmation that there will only be 44 Microsoft Stores by the middle of 2013. Continue to read the full story… […]

  3. Well the economy still sucks, and while you can get dirt cheap leases, now is probably not a good time to be expanding a “retail” chain. How many retailers have expanded their footprint in the past 2-3 years. How many have shrunk, or completely disappeared. 44 stores is what, a 200-300% increase, compared to 2011. That’s a big nut to swallow. The reality is that the bigger the corporation, the slower they move. They still need to answer to shareholders regarding losses.

    With all that said, glad I am getting a store in Orlando and look forward to visiting. While touch and feel is still nice, retail is going the way of the Doe-Doe. If Microsoft can have “real” people helping you in a store, why can’t those same real people help you via voice and/or live video from a centralized call center. Just sayin.

  4. More than the number of stores is the placement of them. There are huge chunks of the country and world that Microsoft has zero presence in compared to Apple.

    I think part of the problem is that lack of hardware to sell. Then again that means they can get some kind of subsidy from PC and phone partners to carry the Windows Phones in the stores.

    I just don’t trust big box stores like Best Buy to sell Microsoft products. There needs to be passionate, knowledgable people showing off the hardware. Using a Signature PC is a lot different than using other PCs too.

  5. Hmmm … we go to Orlando on occasion (going in a few weeks, in fact). I’ll have to check it out after it’s built.

  6. If you ask me, Windows 8 will flop, Windows mobile 8 will flop, and Xbox 360 will continue to flourish as they’ve done a surprisingly good job learning from their failures and watching Sony. For that, they’ve got WalMart and video game shops and they don’t need a “microsoft store” imo. I know they’re trying to really be like apple here more than ever, but maybe it’s time for them to grow a pair and for Microsoft to be Microsoft by fixing Windows 8, nixing Microsoft Mobile altogether, and continuing to improve the Xbox 360.

    .:AB

  7. Albert, maybe you need to take the Smartphone Challenge so you can bring a shiny new Windows Phone home and discover the future of mobility.

  8. @Jim – That’s an oxymoron; “Windows Mobile 7” and “smartphone” are not the same.

    @Linx – My thoughts exactly, thank you.

    .:AB

Comments are closed.