Apple booster Gene Munster from Piper Jaffray has performed a side by side comparison of Microsoft and Apple stores on Black Friday and posted some observations.
After 8 hours of observation he found Apple stores were seeing about 715 customers per hour, while Microsoft stores saw 47% less, at around 379 per hour for the two hours they observed them.
While this is still pretty respectable traffic, the problem appears to be that buyers at the Microsoft store were mainly buying Xbox games, while the Apple store sold about 11 iPads per hour, vs no Surfaces at all during the two hours they observed the store.
Of course not everything was going Apple’s way. While footfall has increased, buying has decreased – last year they sold 2.7 iPads per 100 visitors, this year 1.5 per each 100 visitors, a drop of around 43%, with less iPads being sold than last year (14.8 vs 6.7 iPads and 4.3 iPad Minis). For a company with expectations of high growth an actual reduction in sales, and the movement to a lower-margin product is extremely bad news
Of course it could be argued that for Microsoft the stores are all about being a good show room for their most excellent products, rather than a real retail location, but I suspect both stores would prefer gawkers pick up more products while there.
Read more at CNN here.