Microsoft Store

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Microsoft Store
FoundedOctober 22, 2009; 9 years ago (2009-10-22)
Number of locations
Key people
A Microsoft Store bearing the 2009–2012 logo
Microsoft Store in Yorkdale Toronto, the first store outside the U.S.
Microsoft Store in Sydney

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 Microsoft Store offers Signature PCs and tablets like the Microsoft Surface and from third parties such as HP, Acer, Dell, Lenovo, and VAIO 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 and Xbox One 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.[2] Additional stores have since opened in California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Minnesota, Missouri, Texas and Washington. At the 2011 Professional Developers Conference, Microsoft announced that they intend to open 75 new stores in the next three years.[3]

The first store outside the U.S. (and the first of eight stores in Canada) opened in Toronto on November 16, 2012[4] while the first store outside North America (and first store in Asia-Pacific and second flagship store[5]) opened in Sydney, Australia on November 12, 2015 [6] In September 2017, the company announced a store on Regent Street in London, United Kingdom .[7]


Microsoft's first experience with a retail store was located in the Metreon in San Francisco. It was owned and operated by Sony Retail Entertainment,[8] and ran from 1999[9] to 2001.[10]

In 2009, Microsoft built a "Retail Experience Center" in their Redmond, WA headquarters[11] and announced plans to build its own retail stores.[12] 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[edit]

The Microsoft Store is similar to the popular Apple Store concept, which has been largely successful.[13] 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 One consoles are also available to entertain patrons.

Retail locations[edit]

Map of Microsoft Store locations in the United States

There are Microsoft Store retail locations throughout the US, seven in Canada, one in Sydney, Australia and one due to open in London, United Kingdom in 2019. There was formerly a store in Helsinki, Finland.[14]

Other formats[edit]

Microsoft Specialty Stores[edit]

In May 2013, Microsoft began to launch mall kiosk locations known as Microsoft Specialty Stores, expanding upon the Surface-focused pop-up stores established during the launch of Windows 8. They have a smaller product offering, with a particular focus on Surface and Windows Phone product lines.

In June 2019, Microsoft closed all “Specialty Store” locations. [15]

Best Buy Windows Stores[edit]

On June 13, 2013, Microsoft announced a partnership with the Best Buy chain to replace their existing PC departments with The Windows Store (unrelated to the software distribution platform) at 600 locations in the United States and Canada by September 2013. The store-within-a-store showcases Windows devices and Microsoft hardware and software products (including the Surface, Office, and Xbox lines). Departments for other manufacturers (such as Apple, Samsung and Google) remain separate from the Windows Store sections. Best Buy also pledged to add 1,200 Microsoft-trained sales associates to its stores, and to stock more accessories for Microsoft-related products, such as Windows Phone devices.[16]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Store List - Microsoft Store". Microsoft. Retrieved September 24, 2017.
  2. ^ Microsoft News (2009-08-07). "Behind these walls in Scottsdale & Mission Viejo, the first Microsoft retail stores". Twitter. Retrieved 2010-11-28.
  3. ^ Microsoft will open 75 new stores within 3 years
  4. ^ Kopun, Francine (15 November 2012). "Microsoft's first Canadian retail store to open at Yorkdale: Sneak peek". Toronto Star. Retrieved 10 December 2012.
  5. ^ "Microsoft's Sydney Flagship Store: The Massive New Focus on Service" (Press release). Techly. 2015-11-12. Retrieved 2015-11-14.
  6. ^ "All eyes on Australia: First Microsoft flagship store in Asia Pacific lands in Sydney" (Press release). Microsoft. 2015-04-21. Retrieved 2015-04-21.
  7. ^ Brown, Matt (21 September 2017). "Microsoft to open its first UK retail store in London [Updated]". Windows Central. Retrieved 21 September 2017.
  8. ^ "Microsoft Debuts microsoftSF Retail Environment At San Francisco's Metreon Sony Entertainment Center" (Press release). Microsoft. 1999-06-16. Retrieved 2010-11-28.
  9. ^ Brown, Janelle (1999-06-29). "The consumer incarnation of Microsoftiness". Salon. Retrieved 2010-11-28.
  10. ^ Junnarkar, Sandeep (2001-11-01). "Xbox due, Microsoft exits Sony-owned mall". CNET News. Retrieved 2010-11-28.
  11. ^ Miller, Paul (2009-01-13). "Microsoft builds pretend retail store, wants to play house later". Engadget. Retrieved 2010-11-28.
  12. ^ Lilly, Paul (2009-02-13). "It's Official: Microsoft Brand Store Fronts Coming Soon". MaximumPC. Retrieved 2010-11-28.
  13. ^ Olivarez-Giles, Nathan (2010-11-26). "For some, the Microsoft Store concept is a puzzle". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2011-01-09.
  14. ^ "Microsoft Closes the Flagship Nokia Store in Finland".
  15. ^ "Microsoft continues its kiosk kick, will open new 'specialty stores'". CNET. Retrieved 30 July 2015.
  16. ^ "Microsoft to launch dedicated Windows stores in Best Buys". ZDNet. Retrieved 14 June 2013.

External links[edit]