When Microsoft started their Microsoft Stores the idea was that they would use their shelves to display their products better and more attractively than regular retail stores like BestBuy and have staff there that are more knowledgeable and are able to provide a better sales and support experience.
While I am sure this remains true for their Surface products it seems Windows Phones are no longer part of this happy family. We have received multiple tips from readers saying Microsoft has cleared or is clearing Windows Phones from their brick and mortar stores. One reader reports:
In the Boston store in The Prudential building/mall they have removed almost all Windows phones.
Only 1 employee there actually owns a Windows phone.
None of their “advanced techies” know much about Windows phones.
Bottom line – go to a msft store — where you expect expert or advanced knowledge about Msft products — and they don’t know anything, really.
So I was at the Scottsdale fashion square mall in Scottsdale, Arizona just browsing and eating time before my movie started. I stopped inside the Microsoft Store just to look around because I’m going to be buying a new laptop soon. Also want a Lumia 950 xl to replace my icon but that wasn’t my main concern at the time. I was playing around with the laptops and as I was leaving I noticed there were no phones at all on display. I mean none! I didn’t have the chance to ask but does anyone know what is going on?
We have already noted that Microsoft has de-emphasized Lumia handsets from their online Microsoft Store, and we have seen reports that Microsoft will end sales of these handsets by the end of the year.
According to Microsoft-watching journalist Paul Thurrott “Microsoft is spending 2016 “draining the swamp” (their actual term) of remaining Lumia stock so that they can pave the way for the HP Elite x3,” and as Microsoft shifts further and further to the enterprise market we should expect to see less and less consumer presence for Windows Phones. It seems however that at the very least if you want a hands-on with a Windows Phone it should be possible at a Microsoft Store.
Have our readers noticed this trend in their own local Microsoft Store? Let us know below.