|This article relies on references to primary sources. (October 2012)|
|Founded||October 22, 2009|
|Number of locations||World: 36 stores
|Products||Personal Computers, Smartphones, Xbox 360, Video Games, and other services
Computer Mice, Software & 3rd-party software and accessories, Microsoft Surface RT
The Microsoft Store is a chain of retail stores and an online shopping site, owned and operated by Microsoft and dealing in computers, computer software and consumer electronics. The stores aim to "improve the PC and Microsoft retail purchase experience for consumers worldwide and help consumers make more informed decisions about their PC and software purchases."
The Microsoft Store offers Signature PCs and tablets like the Microsoft Surface and from third parties such as HP, Acer, Dell, Lenovo, and Sony without demos or trialware (pre-installed free trials of certain third-party software that expire after a limited time). It also offers Windows (most retail versions), Microsoft Office, mobile devices running the Windows Phone OS, Xbox 360 game consoles, games and services including on-site Xbox diagnostics. The Answers Desk helps to answer questions related to Windows, Office, and other Microsoft products. The stores also offer class sessions as well as individual appointments.
The first two Microsoft Stores opened within a week of the Windows 7 launch, in Scottsdale, Arizona and Mission Viejo, California. Additional stores have since opened in California, Colorado, Georgia, Illinois, Minnesota, Texas and Washington. At the 2011 Professional Developers Conference, Microsoft announced that they intend to open 75 new stores in the next three years.
Microsoft's first experience with a retail store was called microsoftSF, which was located in the Metreon in San Francisco. It was owned and operated by Sony Retail Entertainment, and ran from 1999 to 2001.
In 2009, Microsoft built a "Retail Experience Center" in their Redmond, WA headquarters and announced plans to build its own retail stores. On October 22, 2009, the same day as the Windows 7 launch, Microsoft opened a retail store in Scottsdale, Arizona. A week later, another opened in Mission Viejo, California. Five additional stores were opened in 2010. A ninth store opened in Atlanta in May 2011, with two more openings planned in Houston and Los Angeles by the end of June.
Shopping experience 
The Microsoft Store is similar to the popular Apple Store concept, which has been largely successful. The concept aims to give a greater level of customer satisfaction by not only having sales staff but also employing "Technical Advisers" (similar to Apple's "Geniuses") to assist customers with technical questions and issues. In addition "Specialists" (or trainers) are employed to show customers how to get the most out of their software. Xbox 360s are also available to entertain patrons.
Store locations 
|This table is incomplete. (December 2012)|
Microsoft Store Online 
Microsoft Store Online is the online store of Microsoft and is the successor of Windows Marketplace, also owned and operated by the company. The online store sells Microsoft software and hardware, as well as Microsoft Signature PCs and select third-party software. Microsoft Signature PCs are computers from various manufacturers pre-loaded with Windows Live Essentials, Zune software, Adobe Reader & Adobe Flash Player, Microsoft Security Essentials, and Silverlight. Besides the online storefront, items from the store can be ordered by phone. The website has thirteen international variations for Australia, Canada, the European Union, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, South Korea, the Netherlands, Spain, United Kingdom, and United States. The stores in Europe are able to accept orders from, and ship to other European countries as well.
The Microsoft Store offers immediate software download options of some Microsoft software products in most[which?] regions.
On February 12, 2012 it was reported that Microsoft's India online store was hacked, and username and passwords were stolen, by a Chinese group called "Evil Shadow Team". The team has stolen login ID's and passwords of users who had used the website for shopping. It was revealed that passwords were not encrypted and were stored in plain text.
See also 
- "Microsoft Store Locations". Microsoft. Retrieved 2012-06-24.
- "Microsoft Appoints David Porter as Corporate Vice President of Retail Stores" (Press release). Microsoft. 2009-02-12. Retrieved 2010-11-28.
- Microsoft News (2009-08-07). "Behind these walls in Scottsdale & Mission Viejo, the first Microsoft retail stores". Twitter. Retrieved 2010-11-28.
- Microsoft will open 75 new stores within 3 years
- Kopun, Francine (15 November 2012). "Microsoft’s first Canadian retail store to open at Yorkdale: Sneak peek". Toronto Star. Retrieved 10 December 2012.
- "Microsoft Debuts microsoftSF Retail Environment At San Francisco's Metreon Sony Entertainment Center" (Press release). Microsoft. 1999-06-16. Retrieved 2010-11-28.
- Brown, Janelle (1999-06-29). "The consumer incarnation of Microsoftiness". Salon. Retrieved 2010-11-28.
- Junnarkar, Sandeep (2001-11-01). "Xbox due, Microsoft exits Sony-owned mall". CNET News. Retrieved 2010-11-28.
- Miller, Paul (2009-01-13). "Microsoft builds pretend retail store, wants to play house later". Engadget. Retrieved 2010-11-28.
- Lilly, Paul (2009-02-13). "It's Official: Microsoft Brand Store Fronts Coming Soon". MaximumPC. Retrieved 2010-11-28.
- Olivarez-Giles, Nathan (2010-11-26). "For some, the Microsoft Store concept is a puzzle". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2011-01-09.
- Morrow, Chris (2010-06-24). "Apple/Microsoft SHOWDOWN in San Diego". CNN iReport. Retrieved 2010-11-28.
- Schering, Steve (2010-11-10). "Microsoft opens new store at Oakbrook Center". The Doings Oak Brook (Sun-Times Media). Retrieved 2010-11-28.
- Biggs, John (2010-10-05). "Microsoft Builds Microsoft Store Across From The Apple Store In Mall Of America". Crunchgear. Retrieved 2010-11-28.
- Chan, Sharon Pian (2010-11-18). "Microsoft Store in Bellevue opens with glitter, glitz". Seattle Times. Retrieved 2010-11-28.
- Lewis, Peter H. (2012-02-10). "Microsoft Stores Open, Often Next Door to Apple Stores". The New York Times.
- "Microsoft's India store hacked, usernames & passwords stolen". The Times Of India. 2012-02-13.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Microsoft Store|
- Official website
- Microsoft Store Locations
- Gizmodo: Microsoft Store Concepts
- Microsoft Store Promo Code