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Microsoft stores to mimic Apple's with "Guru Bars" - Page 4

post #121 of 169
Quote:
Originally Posted by danielchow View Post

so, anyone interested in buying overheating laptop batteries recommended by Bing?



That's just Bing "acting stupidly"!

Ten years ago, we had Steve Jobs, Bob Hope and Johnny Cash.  Today we have no Jobs, no Hope and no Cash.

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Ten years ago, we had Steve Jobs, Bob Hope and Johnny Cash.  Today we have no Jobs, no Hope and no Cash.

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post #122 of 169
i will wait on line for a week to be the first person on planet earth to se a ZUNE accessory.
whats in a name ? 
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whats in a name ? 
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post #123 of 169
Quote:
Originally Posted by axual View Post

Perhaps I'm missing something, but what does Microsoft have to sell of value? Just wondering.

My friend, clearly you have not heard about the new products that will be unveiled at launch. There is the microPhone and the microPod touch, the microBook and the microBook Pro, all running the latest software like microTunes and the appsoft store. Microlife will ship on every computer. Finally, they will offer MicroCare as an extended warranty for all of their products. This is going to be big.
Apple has no competition. Every commercial product which competes directly with an Apple product gives the distinct impression that, Where it is original, it is not good, and where it is good, it...
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Apple has no competition. Every commercial product which competes directly with an Apple product gives the distinct impression that, Where it is original, it is not good, and where it is good, it...
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post #124 of 169
Will they also use the handy belt clip credit card payment devices that Apple uses?

I do wonder if they will have HP, Dell, Toshiba, etc computers lined up on tables for people to use and get online? If so, how will they justify recommending one companies computer over another, won't that anger Dell if they suggest an HP and vice versa?

I do want to see the store just out of curiosity, because it can't only be loaded with Zunes, Zune cases, Zune boombox speakers, MS Suite and Windows 7 boxes. Will they refuse to fix a Windows XP computer since they are trying to get users to upgrade? Will they fix Windows Mobile phones (that would be a huge headache)? What else do they have to sell?
post #125 of 169
Quote:
Originally Posted by mesomorphicman View Post

Will they also use the handy belt clip credit card payment devices that Apple uses?

I do wonder if they will have HP, Dell, Toshiba, etc computers lined up on tables for people to use and get online? If so, how will they justify recommending one companies computer over another, won't that anger Dell if they suggest an HP and vice versa?

I do want to see the store just out of curiosity, because it can't only be loaded with Zunes, Zune cases, Zune boombox speakers, MS Suite and Windows 7 boxes. Will they refuse to fix a Windows XP computer since they are trying to get users to upgrade? Will they fix Windows Mobile phones (that would be a huge headache)? What else do they have to sell?

You know how many people will be putting virus', spyware, malware on these display units.

I can see the men in penguin suites thinking already.
post #126 of 169
Quote:
Originally Posted by Crankenstein View Post

Hopefully these Microsoft stores will be opened up nation wide... If were lucky, there will be one in every city across the United States. At least Microsoft won't have to worry about the stores burning down because some emo kids ipod caught fire or exploded in the process of being fixed.... Why are ipods always 'crapping' out after a couple of months??? What's the point in paying all that extra money for "the apple tax" if the damn things are just going to stop working for no reason at all???

Who needs a Microsoft store. They are just crapping on their partners who are selling products at Best Buy, Fry's, etc. You want a Microsoft store? then go to Best Buy or Fry's. You will find everything Microsoft makes.

I wonder how they will keep the viruses off of the computers in-store or the blue screen away after hours of use by normal people.

Keep that ugly store inspired by the 90s away from my neighborhood thank you.

Of course, the whole thing is just another example of follow the leader played by MS following and copying Apple once again. but never living up to the original.
post #127 of 169
Quote:
Originally Posted by Crankenstein View Post

Hopefully these Microsoft stores will be opened up nation wide... If were lucky, there will be one in every city across the United States. At least Microsoft won't have to worry about the stores burning down because some emo kids ipod caught fire or exploded in the process of being fixed.... Why are ipods always 'crapping' out after a couple of months??? What's the point in paying all that extra money for "the apple tax" if the damn things are just going to stop working for no reason at all???

hehehe

here's a search result from Bing on Zune's battery:
http://www.bing.com/search?q=zune+ba...form=QBRE&qs=n
post #128 of 169
Can someone help me understand why MS is doing this. When Apple opened retail stores, there were very few places people could even see a Mac, let alone buy one. There were also very few places to have your Mac serviced. Good luck finding Mac software. There was no way Apple could convince a large number of people to switch from Windows and at least consider their products without a reliable retail presence.

With Gateway stores and Dell kiosks, they were trying to give people a way to see and touch their offerings which was particularly important for selling laptops.

What would MS consider success? If successful, what exactly does MS gain? Everyone already knows what it is like to run Windows, even Mac users. Everyone is familiar with PC hardware. There are no end of places where a person can see Windows in action and the hardware that runs it. They already have marketshare. Would they even notice a few extra points? There is no switcher market as most Mac users left Windows in the first place. We know exactly what we are missing. How does MS define success? How does this venture give them something they do not already have? How does this end well for them?

MS looks at Apple and says "It seems to be working for them. We should get a piece of that too." What they do not seem to factor in the equation is why Apple needed to do it in the first place. It is easy to understand why Apple did it and and why they succeeded. With MS, I am completely at a loss. I have a feeling they are too.
Apple has no competition. Every commercial product which competes directly with an Apple product gives the distinct impression that, Where it is original, it is not good, and where it is good, it...
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Apple has no competition. Every commercial product which competes directly with an Apple product gives the distinct impression that, Where it is original, it is not good, and where it is good, it...
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post #129 of 169
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mac Voyer View Post

Can someone help me understand why MS is doing this.

That's easy. MS was built using Apple's ideas from the get go. Without Apple they don't know what to do. The logical thing to do is to do what Apple does. What they don't realize is that they don't have the same business model.
post #130 of 169
Quote:
Originally Posted by iPeon View Post

That's easy. MS was built using Apple's ideas from the get go. Without Apple they don't know what to do. The logical thing to do is to do what Apple does. What they don't realize is that they don't have the same business model.

Well that's just it. MS is trying to do what Apple does with software and hardware that is totally incompatible with Apple's business model. They probably assume that even if they don't own the whole widget, they can go halfway, use a few Apple-like elements here and there, and problem solved. Except it really doesn't work like that.
post #131 of 169
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quadra 610 View Post

...and problem solved. Except it really doesn't work like that.

But that's just it. What problem do they have to solve? They are not having any trouble selling Windows or office except maybe to businesses. A retail store would not help that. Unless I miss my guess, Apple's recent gains are nothing to threaten MS's bottom line. Are these stores only being opened to poke a stick in Apple's eye, or is there a business reason for this venture?
Apple has no competition. Every commercial product which competes directly with an Apple product gives the distinct impression that, Where it is original, it is not good, and where it is good, it...
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Apple has no competition. Every commercial product which competes directly with an Apple product gives the distinct impression that, Where it is original, it is not good, and where it is good, it...
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post #132 of 169
It wouldn't really bother me too much if Microsoft copied the Apple Store (even the Genius Bar) right down to the color of the carpeting if it were likely they could make it work. If the plans for the MS stores proceed as suggested by the original article, then their chance of success is close to nil.

Clearly they (the consultants and/or MS) don't seem to understand what makes the Apple Stores work else they wouldn't be trying to clone them. To have any reasonable chance of success, the features of the Apple Stores would have to be adapted to fit Microsoft's business model and marketing environment, but as many posters have pointed out, there doesn't seem to be a way to do that (not without losing a lot of money, anyway).

As for Apple copying others' ideas, they certainly have bought their share of products developed by others and marketed them, with or without reworking them first. But when it comes to the graphical interface elements based on the work done at Xerox PARC, what seems to be forgotten is that Apple licensed some, if not all, of those elements in a deal with Xerox. That hardly constitutes copying in the sense of plagiarism.
post #133 of 169
Quote:
Originally Posted by jpellino View Post

This makes you believe the last original thought this company had was the word "microsoft" itself.

MS Guru Bar Application

Name _________________

Age _____ Gender ______

Do you own a Zune?____

Spell "DLL"_____________


and i had almost forgot about DLL's after leaving windows over ten years ago. i will have nightmares tonight...
post #134 of 169
Quote:
Originally Posted by ceres View Post

Good grief! The Guru bar is going to bankrupt M$. Ever tried calling their tech support?

actually i suspect they will do the classic pass the buck thing that made me move to a mac (that and the incomprehensible DLL files and bill only allowing us 11 midi devices). oh you have a different graphics card? then that's the problem contact them. tossers...
post #135 of 169
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mac Voyer View Post

But that's just it. What problem do they have to solve? They are not having any trouble selling Windows or office except maybe to businesses. A retail store would not help that. Unless I miss my guess, Apple's recent gains are nothing to threaten MS's bottom line. Are these stores only being opened to poke a stick in Apple's eye, or is there a business reason for this venture?

MS still having a ton of money is really beside the point, IMHO, when considering performance. Having a ton of money yet failing to innovate and roll out compelling and inspiring products simply shows you're slow and lazy. A pretty dangerous position that does little to inspire investor confidence. MS can ride the coattails of its licensing cow forever, and still have a ton of money while doing nothing in particular. Then you have Apple with a fraction of MS' R&D, fewer employees, yet they are tearing up the industry and redefining whole market left and right in only a couple of years.

Suddenly that ton of money MS has doesn't look so inspiring.

MS is opening stores because their brand image is horrible, they have zero mindshare, they are viewed as mere copycats that are continually embarrassed by the Premium-market focused Apple, and more telling, is that recent trends have been quite disturbing for MS:

Market share plunging from 97%+ 3-4 years ago to ~88% currently.

IE webshare plunging substantially in the wake of Firefox and other alternatives.

Overwhelming unit sale market share, but it's now almost entirely at the low end of the market.

Increasing concerns about all of this performance and their lack of focus, plus their underperforming non-core areas (Zune, etc) and no expectation of any real recovery over the next couple of quarters. Due at least in part to no vision and lousy leadership (Ballmer.)

The total failure of their marketing efforts (from Seinfeld to Laptop Hunters), and how this ties in with their free advertising for Apple.

Concerns over Google's Chrome OS (which might put even MS low-end market potential in jeopardy.)

MS' loss of control of the Premium end of the market ($1000+ notebooks), virtually owned by Apple

MS' image as a cheap, bargain-basement brand and a dinosaur company past its prime that can no longer innovate, and which depends on the ideas of others to get ahead, but get ahead too late.


So really, it's a combination of reasons. What might hurt the most, however, is their loss of the Premium end of the market and their lousy brand image. MS simply does not know what it is, and can't articulate what the hell it is. This store venture is MS' attempt to "class up" Windows and cultivate the image of "cool" and "stylish." MS wants the upper crust of income earners to choose Windows, not Apple.

Except there's a slight problem: Windows and the hardware manufacturers aren't set up for this kind of business model. The Store venture and the whole premise underlining Apple is that owning the whole widget is the first step and the most important step in providing the kind of experience that can be showcased and promoted effectively. Something that's in need of "classing up" in the first place really needs to be rethought. It's the old lipstick-on-a-pig idea.

The problem is (and always was), that Microsoft is just a corporate/enterprise software vendor masquerading as a home/consumer vendor. And it really shows.
post #136 of 169
Snigger!

Guru Bar doesn't even sound good does it? In fact, it sounds very naff. Nerd Herd would have been cool, but thanks to Chuck, they can't call it that!

Guru Bar...
post #137 of 169
"In short, if it's anything like what Lippincott is planning, it sounds absolutely amazing, and we'll be lining up the first day it opens."

Wow. With brilliant editorial insight like this, I plan to spend a lot more of my time reading Gizmodo articles in the future...
post #138 of 169
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quadra 610 View Post

Having a ton of money yet failing to innovate and roll out compelling and inspiring products simply shows you're slow and lazy.

Who says Microsoft can't innovate?

You know, it gets a little tiring to hear that Microsoft is not innovative and that they've never come up with an original idea.
Behold, a top 10 list of consumer-friendly, breakthrough technologies brought to you from the minds at Microsoft:

* Microsoft Bob & Clippy
* The Registry
* 20-Digit Product Keys
* SongSmith
* DLLs
* Internet Explorer & ActiveX
* Squirting
* Windows Genuine Advantage
* PlaysForSure DRM
* Embrace and Extend


post #139 of 169
Quote:
Originally Posted by freediverx View Post

"In short, if it's anything like what Lippincott is planning, it sounds absolutely amazing, and we'll be lining up the first day it opens."

Wow. With brilliant editorial insight like this, I plan to spend a lot more of my time reading Gizmodo articles in the future...

Remember, these are the same people that get all excited and jubilant over an IE security patch.
post #140 of 169
Quote:
Originally Posted by freediverx View Post

Who says Microsoft can't innovate?

I'm getting a little tired of people saying Microsoft is not innovative and that they've never come up with an original idea. Behold, a top 10 list of consumer-friendly, breakthrough technologies brought to you from the minds at Microsoft:

Microsoft Bob & Clippy
The Registry
20-Digit Product Keys
SongSmith
Internet Explorer
Squirting
Windows Genuine Advantage
Embrace and Extend
DRM
DLL Hell


You missed one:

An update to the update to the update to Microsoft update. But that probably falls under WGA.

After all these years, I still can't for the life of me understand how it is that Mircosoft has any "fanboys" at all. Like, fans of what? Windows??? Office? Its corporate products? Microsoft really hasn't done anything remotely compelling or interesting since 2001. And Windows XP was nothing to be proud of. Maybe the Xbox . . .

And really, how good will these Microsoft store be for their image initially and what impact will that have long-term? The second one opens beside and Apple Store, consumers will immediately label it as "copycat." MS is being way too obvious with this latest attempt to ape Apple. They'll be doing a wonderful job of reinforcing their "follower" image.
post #141 of 169
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quadra 610 View Post

After all these years, I still can't for the life of me understand how it is that Mircosoft has any "fanboys" at all. Like, fans of what? Windows??? Office? Its corporate products? Microsoft really hasn't done anything remotely compelling or interesting since 2001. And Windows XP was nothing to be proud of.

The fanboys are largely made up of people whose income and careers depend on Microsoft. For example, to a large IT department dedicated to supporting a Windows installed base and Microsoft-centric code environment, the prospect of any streamlined, secure, efficient and reliable alternative may sound like a trip to the unemployment line.
post #142 of 169
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffharris View Post

One can say that Apple "stole" many original concepts from Xerox PARC. Apple admits that they used, adapted, developed and brought to market many concepts, but they don't claim the original concepts as theirs alone.


Apple didn't steal anything. Apple PAID Xerox to allow them to tour their PARC facilities and consult with their engineers. They later HIRED numerous PARC personnel as well, including Jef Raskin and Bruce Horn.

For a quick reference on the history of the GUI, check out:
http://mackido.com/Interface/ui_history.html

Xerox was extremely shortsighted at the corporate level and didn't see commercial value in the brilliant development efforts of PARC. Their focus at the time was on milking their copier business.
post #143 of 169
Quote:
Originally Posted by freediverx View Post


Apple didn't steal anything. Apple PAID Xerox to allow them to tour their PARC facilities and consult with their engineers. They later HIRED numerous PARC personnel as well, including Jef Raskin and Bruce Horn.

For a quick reference on the history of the GUI, check out:
http://mackido.com/Interface/ui_history.html

Xerox was extremely shortsighted at the corporate level and didn't see commercial value in the brilliant development efforts of PARC. Their focus at the time was on milking their copier business.

I guess I wasn't being clear...
DOSHeads will often attempt to justify Microsoft's predatory practices by saying that Apple stole from Xerox which was CLEARLY NOT the case! Besides, Apple brought all kinds of technologies that were lying fallow in laboratories to market.
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post #144 of 169
Dvorak actually makes some interesting remarks, for once. If MS is indeed in dceline, it'll be a ponderously slow process, much like an old man easing into a bathtub.

http://www.marketwatch.com/story/is-...oft-2009-07-24

"Everyone knew the day would come when the fortunes of Microsoft Corp. would reverse. The company might now be in actual decline," John C. Dvorak writes for MarketWatch. "If it's true, it brought it on itself by ignoring its core competencies, because it exhibits signs of what can only be described as Corporate Attention Deficit Disorder -- CADD."

"Try to remember all the crazy directions Microsoft has gone in over the past few years. Note the dizzy remarks by Chief Executive Steve Ballmer, who recently insisted that online advertising would soon account for the majority of Microsoft's income. This is a software company making these comments... [Microsoft] has been distracted too easily by the success of others in essentially unrelated fields," Dvorak writes.

After giving many examples of ridiculous me-too Microsoft money losers, including Teddy Ruxpin knockoffs, Microsoft-TV, Bing, and Zune, Dvorak writes, "What's shocking is that the cash cows, specifically the Windows operating system and the Office suite, have managed to finance all these idiotic efforts for so many years. While Microsoft's profits and sales were way down this last quarter, it is only a matter of time before losses begin... Now comes the latest fiasco: Microsoft wants to open retail stores, all of them next to or near an Apple store."
post #145 of 169
Folks, Im not a fan of MSFT by any means, but there are only so many ways to skin a cat.

A Nissan dealership looks a lot like a Toyota dealership which looks a lot like a Plymouth dealership. Big glass windows, cars lined up in neat rows, sales people inside at desks, maybe a free hotdog on weekends.

A Neiman-Marcus looks a lot like a Saks which looks likewell, you get my point.

There are only so many great ways to display computers, software and peripherals. Yes, Apples total approach is outstanding and, as you know, imitation is the best form of flattery. Perhaps MSFT will develop some sort of schtick or put their own spin on Apples successful approach.

For me, the bottom line is my interaction with the people. Ive been to Apple stores in NYC and Baltimore, as well as King of Prussia and Lancaster, PA, multiple times each. Every moment of truth with an employee has been the same: theyre knowledgeable about their products, have good tips for enhancing the user experience, articulate, unassuming etc. I really dont care if the walls are white or green, or if the wooden tables are beech or birch. If the moments of truth are disappointing, I wont be returning. I think most of you feel the same way.

MSFTs challenge will be to out-behave Apple at retail. Perhaps they can pull it off, but this strategy could still be ineffective if their underlying products keep underdelivering for the user.
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post #146 of 169
Take a 5-7 year old Mac to the Apple Store and they will help you with your issues. I see it frequently when I visit to buy something.

Take a 5-7 year old under-the-weather Dell that is wheezing and ask for advice & ?

I think I may do it just to see what they tell me. If they have "The Right Stuff", then I'll admit they are "Raising the Bar".

Unfortunately, I have never been able to describe MS & customer support in the same breath.
post #147 of 169
Quote:
Originally Posted by alphajack7 View Post

Microsoft did not rip off Apple. One is Guru. The other is Genius. Two completely different words.

One starts with a "G", the other starts with.....forget that.

One has 4 letters. The other has 6 letters.

Is this guy Steve Ballmers?
post #148 of 169
I understand Apple has redefined how premium computers are sold. Perhaps Sony, Dell, and HP can learn from the success of the Apple stores. But, and this is the key point, MICROSOFT DOES NOT SELL COMPUTERS!

Windows does not need a storefront as it ships with almost every PC sold in the world. Every major electronics store or department within a store carries PCs and tons of software to go with it. If the Mac had this type of exposure back in the day, there would be no Apple Retail.

MS does not repair hardware, nor do they provide service for the OS sold on other people's hardware. What, then, will they be servicing at the guru bar? I suppose they can swap out rrod xbox units but they do not need a special store to do that. Does the world really need yet another place to buy a Zune? A counter of Dell mini 9s running XP will not bring enough profit to cover rent in the places where Apple stores hang out. Will MS feature high-end gear? Tough to do for a company positioning itself as the budget computer for the common person.

Kay Jewelers has been successful in the retail space. Many auto dealerships do well at selling cars. Will MS copy their retail strategies as well? MS does not have the same challenges as Apple, nor do they sell the same type of product. Why would cloning the Apple Store make sense for MS? I see how it would make sense for Dell. But why MS?
Apple has no competition. Every commercial product which competes directly with an Apple product gives the distinct impression that, Where it is original, it is not good, and where it is good, it...
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Apple has no competition. Every commercial product which competes directly with an Apple product gives the distinct impression that, Where it is original, it is not good, and where it is good, it...
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post #149 of 169
Let's Review the rip offs to date:

Entire Mac desktop...check!

Recycle bin vs.Trash...check!

Gadgets vs. Widgets...check!

Windows Flip 3D vs. Expose....check!

Zune vs. iPod...check!

Store concept...check!

Guru bar...check!

It's just getting ridiculous at this point.
I can only please one person per day.  Today is not your day.  Tomorrow doesn't look good either.  
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I can only please one person per day.  Today is not your day.  Tomorrow doesn't look good either.  
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post #150 of 169
MS doesn't make computers. All they will become is a narrow retailer. Perhaps the 'store idea' will be like the Apple Stores that were INSIDE CompUSA's and not free standing.

All they do is copy. If they copy the Apple store, they will be copy cats once again. Apple is successful because they have a superior OS and hardware. Frustration is the thread that runs through every Windows user.
post #151 of 169
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mac Voyer View Post

Can someone help me understand why MS is doing this. When Apple opened retail stores, there were very few places people could even see a Mac, let alone buy one. There were also very few places to have your Mac serviced. Good luck finding Mac software. There was no way Apple could convince a large number of people to switch from Windows and at least consider their products without a reliable retail presence.

With Gateway stores and Dell kiosks, they were trying to give people a way to see and touch their offerings which was particularly important for selling laptops.

In the time before A.S. (Apple Stores), Apple relied on third party retail stores to sell their machines. At the time, PC's really became a commodity and Apple, becoming quite frustrated, felt the industry was not taking them seriously. Retail stores were not giving Apple the kind of floor space and advertising necessary to compete among the bottom-of-barrel PC / Windows machines.

So Apple did what it does with their products. They took complete control of their product line not just from inception to manufacture, but all the way to retail and exposure. They elevated their products above the commodity level and made it a lifestyle. Because they have complete control over hardware and software, they can provide the end-user a total experience package. Because they control the hardware, they can make absolutely sure their OS "just works" on it. So whether it's an iPod of a high-end Mac Pro, they managed to make the operation of their products as simple as using a toaster.

Love it or hate it, the general consensus (IMHO) is that users are migrating to Apple simply because users believe Apple provides more value for their money which includes much more than just low price. Even in this horrible economic situation we're in, the fact that Apple is still having blowout quarters while PC makers are fighting for their existence just goes to show that Apple has something going for it.

And herein lies the conundrum with Microsoft's plan. In general, they only provide software. Windows is used by millions of people and corporations. It's something people equate to the humdrum routine of working in the office. It will be a serious uphill battle for MS to shed that grunge image. How they will succeed at this will be a big mystery to most. How a Guru will be expected to (politely) tell a customer their corrupted machine cannot be serviced by them since it is a vendor / hardware issue will be interesting for sure. Even though MS owns Windows, they cannot dictate how it will be used by PC makers that could have made faulty hardware or terrible drivers.

They have a completely different company plan than Apple does. For MS to simply imitate Apple's stores literally in service (not just floor plan) will be a recipe for disaster.

For MS to imply they may open up stores alongside Apple stores would be suicidal. Imagine a user dropping off their corrupted PC at a guru desk for an hour or two. They may just take a walk next door to Apple and start asking questions, see how their Genius bar works and the problems they deal with and may end up deciding that perhaps the Apple way would be the better way after all.

You cannot simply train someone for a MS guru position that has the kind of passion and belief that an Apple genius employee has for Apple or OSX. It may sound arrogant to some. How many hardcore Windows gurus have you met that genuinely love what MS does and how their products are and are willing to do what it takes to spread that belief? I work 9-to-5 on using Windows (on a Mac though) and believe me I find no joy in having to use it with all the everyday issues one has just to keep it running decently.
post #152 of 169
My thoughts exactly macdanboy. This is going to go over like a lead balloon. I can see it now, hoards of people lined up to fix their blue screen of death. I used to support both macs and pc's. When I was going to fix a mac I knew it would be a half hour or so pretty much no matter how bad it was. When going to fix a PC, I knew it was going to be a royal pain in the ass and take anywhere from an hour or two, to all day. This is going to be a frickin' disaster. I might go just to watch the Guru Bar unravel before my very eyes. How entertaining!
post #153 of 169
So what's new about Microsoft copying Apple?
They've been doing that since the beginning,

That's their big idea of going into retail? Sheeezz!
Very original I might add.

C
post #154 of 169
Quote:
Originally Posted by SDW2001 View Post

Let's Review the rip offs to date:

Entire Mac desktop...check!

Recycle bin vs.Trash...check!

Gadgets vs. Widgets...check!

Windows Flip 3D vs. Expose....check!

Zune vs. iPod...check!

Store concept...check!

Guru bar...check!

It's just getting ridiculous at this point.



post #155 of 169
Quote:
Originally Posted by SDW2001 View Post

Let's Review the rip offs to date:

Entire Mac desktop...check!

Recycle bin vs.Trash...check!

Gadgets vs. Widgets...check!

Windows Flip 3D vs. Expose....check!

Zune vs. iPod...check!

Store concept...check!

Guru bar...check!

It's just getting ridiculous at this point.



So what's next?

WINDOWS GOLDEN DELICIOUS
WINDOWS GRANNY SMITH
WINDOWS GRAPE
WINDOWS KIWI

????

WINDOWS [Put your favorite fruit here]............


C
post #156 of 169
Quote:
Originally Posted by Anthracite View Post

Folks, Im not a fan of MSFT by any means, but there are only so many ways to skin a cat.

A Nissan dealership looks a lot like a Toyota dealership which looks a lot like a Plymouth dealership. Big glass windows, cars lined up in neat rows, sales people inside at desks, maybe a free hotdog on weekends.

A Neiman-Marcus looks a lot like a Saks which looks likewell, you get my point.

There are only so many great ways to display computers, software and peripherals. Yes, Apples total approach is outstanding and, as you know, imitation is the best form of flattery. Perhaps MSFT will develop some sort of schtick or put their own spin on Apples successful approach.

For me, the bottom line is my interaction with the people. Ive been to Apple stores in NYC and Baltimore, as well as King of Prussia and Lancaster, PA, multiple times each. Every moment of truth with an employee has been the same: theyre knowledgeable about their products, have good tips for enhancing the user experience, articulate, unassuming etc. I really dont care if the walls are white or green, or if the wooden tables are beech or birch. If the moments of truth are disappointing, I wont be returning. I think most of you feel the same way.

MSFTs challenge will be to out-behave Apple at retail. Perhaps they can pull it off, but this strategy could still be ineffective if their underlying products keep underdelivering for the user.


If you are comparing Apples to Apples (pun intended) then yes I can agree with you.

But the main difference here is that MS don't make computers making it a VERY different ball game for MS.

The copycat dress is wearing thin and it seems they STILL! don't get it over there.
It must be really painful for the big wigs to not feel any remorse of doing this.....

oh well,
C
post #157 of 169
Quote:
Originally Posted by 801 View Post

Fail.

There will be so many caveats as to what they will answer questions about that it will be alienating to the public. (certain models, certain OS versions, items bought there, etc.)


I suspect that the Gurus will be more akin to the Apple trainers than the Geniuses.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tundraboy View Post

You mean to tell me that the gazillions of computer owners who MS telephone techies turn away because their version of Windows is OEM will be welcomed by the guru bar? They will not have enough gurus or bars to handle that deluge.

unlike my local apple store were my roommate took in an ibook and walked out with it up and running (it was a software problem). not a word was said about it being way out of warranty.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Crankenstein View Post

You forget that the main difference between Apples stores and Microsoft stores will be... The Microsoft stores won't be selling products that EXPLODE or CATCH ON FIRE, plus... The Microsoft stores will be selling products that are actually 'stable' and don't cost 5X the amount of the actual worth

that's because these aren't really stores. they are show rooms. the most you might be able to buy is a keyboard or a new mouse.
post #158 of 169
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

A leaked presentation has exposed Microsoft's tentative plans for its retail stores -- and the high degree to which they'll imitate Apple stores, down to their layouts and even the presence of a dedicated "Guru Bar" for help.

A leaked proposal for Microsoft from design consulting firm Lippicott immediately provides hints of an Apple connection with a bright, open layout where the center and edges of the store are dominated by computers showing the "seamless" link between Windows PCs and peripherals. Themed areas would push specific products, such as home theater PCs, netbooks or Windows Mobile and Zune devices.

On closer inspection, though, the influence becomes at times extremely close. The reference store seen by Gizmodo would have a Guru Bar -- in some slides labeled as an Answer Bar or Windows Bar -- that would directly copy the Genius Bars at Apple stores and let customers make appointments either for help or just to ask questions. The number of products would be kept to a minimum to avoid the confusion present in stores where most Windows PCs are sold today. Microsoft's outlets would even revive the theater component that Apple has mostly tossed aside: an "event space" at the back of the store would provide a dedicated screen and seating for training sessions or social events.

Lippicott isn't shy about where it takes its cue and shows the positive experiences it sees in other major, if not always successful, retail brands. Apple is held as the best example for its branding, simple layouts, and enthusiastic staff, but others aren't quite treated so kindly. Sony stores are criticized for "uninformed" staff and poor layouts, while AT&T and Nike are also docked for certain weaknesses.

Customers could even set aside parts of the store for paid private events, such as custom group training or, oddly enough, birthday parties.

The standard PC tables at the proposed Microsoft store design. | Image credits: Gizmodo.

A Guru Bar at the tentative Microsoft store. | Image credits: Gizmodo.

Lippicott's positive view of how the Apple store concept could benefit Microsoft. | Image credits: Gizmodo.

Where Microsoft would differentiate itself is in the technology behind the shopping experience. Instead of static graphics, a giant store-length display would advertise new products and change with the season or with major launches. Not surprisingly, multi-touch Surface tables would be omnipresent to give shoppers demos of certain experiences, and customers could order computers online or even print custom notebook decals at the store.

As the extensive document isn't necessarily representative of Microsoft's final action plan, it's undetermined just how much of this experience would actually reach the finished stores when they open in the fall. The slides indicate that the store arrangement may be intended for flagship stores and, by extension, could be scaled back for smaller locations. However, they do corroborate previous reports that the stores will be showcases for Microsoft's ideal vision of computing rather than a store meant to move as much product as possible.

Company executives have previously sworn that the stores wouldn't echo Apple "in the long term" and that the future shops would serve as incubators for ideas other retailers could use to improve their own stores. All the same, the new presentation shows that, at least in the short term, visitors to Apple's shops will find more than a few similarities in what Microsoft plans to offer.


Microshit is going to give back to the world what it has robbed many business and individuals by creating the 'copy' concept of Apple without any stuff. For sure Microshit's cash reserves will come down by couple of billion dollars.
post #159 of 169
I really don't see this impacting on apple at all, if anything it may dent sales in places like Best Buy and PC world in the UK (if god forbid M$ introduces stores here). The one thing that annoys me about M$ is that they don't know how to leave well enough alone, if another company hits on a successful idea remotely connected to computing M$ will be there to launch a competeing product just to try and squeeze the other people out.
post #160 of 169
Quote:
Originally Posted by quinney View Post

Well, the Guru Bars should at least guarantee they will always have
a big crowd of people in there.

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