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Microsoft To Copy Apple & Launch Retail Stores

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It may not seem like something the general public has been crying out for, but Microsoft has apparently decided to begin opening its own retail stores.

Citing "our sources close to Microsoft", Fudzilla claims the Yahoo chaser desperately wants to establish a retail market presence to build interest and desirability around its products, much in the same way Apple has done so successfully.
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A full catalogue of Microsoft only products will allegedly be stocked in these stores ranging from PC peripherals such as mice and webcams to its Zune MP3 player line, Xbox 360 games console, Windows Mobile based handsets and core software offerings.

Rather ominously, Microsoft is also likely to install a 'Genius Bar' equivalent where customers can take their questions and technical problems, though I'd suggest it better be far bigger since the queue to it will be longer than those seen outside most international embassies.

I'd also question the value of such a chain given Microsoft doesn't offer the same end-to-end sandboxed solutions Apple can meaning unless it is going to bring in third party computers practical demonstration of many of its wares would be impossible. If it does bring in third party computers then how is the store any different than a restricted version of PC World or Dixons?

Needless to say no timescale or regional info is available at this stage, but Microsoft I'd suggest you tread carefully, very carefully...

In related news Microsoft exec David Cross recently admitted "The reason we put UAC {User Account Control} into {Vista} was to annoy users. I'm serious." Well congratulations Microsoft, you did at least achieve one of your ambitions for the OS...

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