Yes, they are the worst place to look for Windows Tablets. This evening I went to local Best Buy. They have this Windows 8 display table in the entrance, which would have been really good if any of the systems worked properly. They have Samsung ATIV 500T A04US Smart PC. The S-Pen is missing in that and the Windows Live Account has not been setup, so you don’t see anything much interesting there. Next to it on each side you see Asus Vivo RT tablet and Surface RT tablet. Asus RT has been setup and is working. The Surface RT, is turned on but not setup. You will not see much there. Next to Surface RT there is HP All-In-One PC, which is turned off.
This table is partitioned into two, the other side is facing the Best Buy Mobile and has Asus Vivo RT, which works, kind off, and Surface RT, which is totally turned off. and HP Touch book, which is frozen to death. I turned on Surface RT. Both Surface RTs (one on the other side and this one) don’t have the standard Allison Brown account setup. IE10 has Google as home page. Stupid. I thought it would take me to either Best Buy or Bing. Didn’t expect Google as home page there. Now I moved to the Best Buy tablets section. iPad Mini and iPad 2, new iPad (they have two there, so I am guessing both 3rd and 4th generations) are on display and next to them are 10s of Android tablets. iPads have their own display table. Samsung have their own display table for Galaxy Tabs, and Players.
The common tablet display has tablets from variety of tablet makers including Asus, Toshiba, Sony, and others. Interestingly both Asus Vivo RT and Surface RT are placed in the same section again. Surface RT is placed next to Asus Transformer Pad and the other side of it was Asus Vivo RT. This display section also has Toshiba, Acer, Sony and others. If the user is looking at prices the Transformers would look cheaper than Surface RT and Vivo RT. And while Transformers on the display are functioning and Windows Tablets are powered off. And even if you turn on, they are not setup. So I called one employee of Best Buy and asked him about them. He had no clue what I was asking for and pointing me to iPad and Galaxy Tab. Pathetic.
Some of the Best Buy employees are very knowledgeable here at this store and they know me. They show me exactly what I am looking for and they don’t hesitate to learn from me. I couldn’t find them today. Any way Best Buy needs more trained staff, who are interested in learning the stuff. That way they could sell more and push Best Buy from becoming another Circuit City. This is not the first Best Buy store I have seen in the neighborhood. Prior to release of Surface RT at Best Buy stores, I went to two more Best Buy stores after the launch of Windows 8 and the situation is similar. Nothing improved or changed.
Note: If Microsoft is reading this, I have something for them. Microsoft, don’t think you are done because you started selling the Surfaces at stores like Best Buy and Staples. You need your trained staff present there. That way you can avoid embarrassment. People like me can’t help other buyers continuously standing there. Because it is not our job. I think, Microsoft, you should depute some of your trained staff/contractors at each Best Buy store like you did when you launched Kinect in 2010 and kept them on rolls for almost a year there. That would encourage the buyers to learn more about Windows RT tablets especially the new Surface RT.
Did any of the readers encountered similar situation at Best Buy stores? To me, this whole effort Microsoft Windows Tablet promotion by the stores like Best Buy is going half-heartedly.