Apple Store vs Microsoft Store

George Canellis sent me this pic today. It’s 10:00 am at the Walt Whitman Mall on Long Island. Maybe Microsoft opens later in the day.

  • This what you see anywhere there is an Apple store and a Microsoft store in the same mall. Microsoft has to be losing tons of money on these stores. Retail isn’t cheap. It’s also amazingly pathetic how they have tried to make them look like Apple stores.

    • MS has a virtual monopoly in areas with its Windows OS and Office suite. As with most monopolies, they try to expand and can cover massive losses with their monopoly profits. In markets other than these two monopolies, MS has been either a failure or made marginal profits at best. XBox lot hundreds of millions and is now making a small profit. Zune: massive losses. Search: massive losses. Database: marginal profits. Computer hardware: chump change. MS is a failure whenever they have to tried to sell to the end user. That’s why the MS stores are around even though they are, as you say, losing tons of money. And now they’re going to add temporary “pop-up” stores for the holiday season. These, too, are going to fail as MS continues to flail, surviving only on their monopolies.

      • So basically what you’re saying is they should just stop trying to do new things? Were the first Apple Stores an overnight success? That’s an honest question. Things take time to catch on. Microsoft is a different company and these stores are supposed to represent that and put them in direct contact with their consumers to repair their brand. There is nothing exciting happening right now (that consumers know of) that would attract them to any Microsoft Store.

        • Were the first Apple Stores an overnight success?

          Yeah, they kind of were…

          However, If the Surface II is any indication, Microsoft may be trying to position itself to build the products it wants to have in it’s own stores, and is willing to take a loss while it builds that product portfolio.

          But that kind of long term thinking hasn’t really been Microsoft’s forte, so we will just have to wait and see…

  • That looks almost exactly like a MSFT store here in Houston (design wise; not people). I went in and did the Bing It On challenge too. 🙂 (it was a tie)

    I went to do this a month or so ago (show a comparison) but they were too similar. Both stores had a similar amount of people in them. The time before that it was a huge difference (Apple being way busier).

    I’ve noticed MSFT stores are normally busy around the XBox area.

  • Does the MSFT store even have a logo or something to attract people’s attention? Or are they hoping people think it an Apple store walk by and go…oh well…while I’m here…

    • DT

      The MSFT store here gets a bit crowded in the evenings …

      … right after they put out their “Free Beer” signs.

  • Dadofos1

    Perhaps the most telling detail is the row of pillars that intersect the MSFT store (and even its facade). This captures a lot of the difference in execution and appreciation of retail that Apple has vs. almost anyone else other than super-high-end luxury brands. Perhaps not worth it on a cost-benefit analysis but it’s a palpable difference.

  • You should see the Apple store on the weekend! And that’s Apple’s temporary location in the mall, they will be moving to a much bigger spot down the hall soon.

    • Player_16

      I was wondering about that -with their ceiling being black or no panels.


  • Am I the only one that misses when Apple stores were empty and you could just walk in, talk to associates, buy what you came for, and leave without feeling like you were at a rock concert?

    • Tbone

      I like rock concerts.

    • Yes. Yes you are.

  • Player_16

    Wow! I’ll have my own personal salesman/assistance with me the whole time.

    • you get that at Apple too. Just easier to track one down at MS.

  • In other news, there’s a mall named after Walt Whitman…

    • Ben

      Gliding o’er all, through all, Through Nature, Time, and Space, As a ship on the waters advancing, The voyage of the soul—not life alone, BSOD, many BSODs I’ll sing.

      • “Song of Myself” is Ballmer’s favorite title of anything, ever.

  • It’s hard to properly compare the two stores, because there are too many people in the way at the Apple one.

  • Stocknomics

    PHOTOS: Microsoft store in Palo Alto empty on busy Saturday afternoon. Apple store next door was packed

  • This is the exact same thing I’ve seen, including just today when I was in a mall in the Buffalo area during prime shopping hours (and by the way, it’s a year and a half after this article was posted). Apple store brimming with customers, Microsoft store completely empty except for the employees. They also seem to have become desperate enough that they’ve taken to setting up product demos outside the store to try to lure folks in. It isn’t working.

    The fact is, Microsoft isn’t going to establish itself as a hip consumer brand (aside from the odd xbox here and there, but I won’t let my kids have one because the vast majority of xbox titles are way too violent). Windows on phones and tablets is quite simply a non-starter.

    So they have a new CEO whose name isn’t Gates or Ballmer. If he really wants to turn the company around he ought to shut down the phone and tablet operations, and focus on making Microsoft’s business software work on the non-Microsoft platforms people are actually using. And shut down those silly stores; it’s embarrassing.