Australia has plenty of Apple stores, and we even have a couple of Samsung stores, but we now have our first Microsoft store, and it’s not just for Microsoft products, but for anyone with a tech problem that involves a Microsoft-made thing.
Sydney’s Pitt Street Mall is now home to one more store front, and while we don’t normally write about this sort of thing — because stores are rarely up on our radar and worth writing about — Microsoft’s first flagship store outside of America is worth talking about, not just because it’s big, bright, and shiny, but because of what it potentially brings.
It’s not just about selling computers, either, though that’s obviously part of it. Hey, it’s a store, after all.
No, this is about what Windows and Office and Xbox can do beyond just the computer side of things, with Microsoft’s people telling GadgetGuy that this was about “that wow moment”.
“It’s the opportunity to connect,” said Travis Walter, General Manager of International Retail Stores at Microsoft. “Flagship for us about that wow moment.”
“Now we’re just bringing in that physical location allowing people to come in and meet and touch and feel those products,” he said.
“Those products” include more than just the typical laptop and even Microsoft’s own take on the category, because you’ll surely find the Surface 3, Surface Pro 4, and even the Surface Book in the store.
Alongside these, you’ll also find computers from other manufacturers, and these will be sold with a “Microsoft Signature Edition” installation of Windows, a version that has been tweaked to be the best implementation of Windows Microsoft wants out there, different from what the other retailers will sell.
Aside for laptops, you’ll find a smattering of desktops in the all-in-one bracket, and even some phones and accessories.
In fact, the Sydney Microsoft Store will give Aussies the first showing of Windows 10 on a phone with the Lumia 950 and Lumia 950XL, as well as Microsoft’s Band 2, the second of the wearables from Microsoft but the first Australia has seen from the company.