Microsoft to permanently close nearly all of its retail stores

Microsoft is about to (principally) hand over on retail. Today the corporate introduced plans to permanently close all Microsoft Store areas within the United States and all over the world, apart from 4 areas that can stay open.

Those areas are New York City (Fifth Ave), London (Oxford Circus), Sydney (Westfield Sydney), and the Redmond campus location. All different Microsoft Store areas throughout the United States and globally will probably be closing.

The determination partially explains why Microsoft had but to reopen a single retailer after they had been all closed in mild of the COVID-19 pandemic. Last week, Microsoft instructed The Verge that its “approach for re-opening Microsoft Store locations is measured and cautious, guided by monitoring global data, listening to public health and safety experts, and tracking local government restrictions.” The firm declined to supply an replace on when any stores would possibly open once more.

Since many Microsoft stores are in procuring facilities and malls, the continued closure hasn’t stood out as uncommon. In US states which are taking a cautious strategy to restoring retail operations — to keep away from a resurgence of the novel coronavirus — most malls stay closed. There have already been spikes of COVID-19 instances in areas with extra relaxed tips, which has led Apple to re-close some stores the place it had solely just lately welcomed clients again in.

In April, Microsoft outlined in a blog post what number of retail retailer associates had shifted to distant work after their on a regular basis jobs had been sidelined. The firm has continued to present common pay for staff members via the pandemic. “Our retail team members will continue to serve customers working from Microsoft corporate facilities or remotely and we will continue to develop our diverse team in support of the overall company mission and objectives,” the corporate mentioned.

The Microsoft Store debuted in 2009 and intently adhered to Apple’s profitable retail playbook. Each retailer is a showcase for the corporate’s Surface and Xbox {hardware}, plus a range of third-party PCs. Employees are well-versed in all issues Windows, and the corporate additionally affords in-store occasions, workshops, customer support, and repairs.

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