Coffeehouse Thread

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Windows RT and Surface in Best Buy

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  • Retro​Recursion

    I frequent the local Best Buy to check out the latest Windows 8 offerings. Here's what I've seen consistently over the past 8 weeks:

    • A slew of what look like retro-fitted Win7 machines all running Windows 8. Most of them are not touchscreens.
    • In 8 weeks I have only seen one other person looking at any of the Win8 machines. 1!!! He was speaking with a sales rep and overhearing their conversation they both couldn't understand why they would need to touch their home computer. The sale was not made.
    • Right next to the 30 or so Win8 machines is a little iPad stand. There were always a group crowded around it. Never saw less than 4 people in 8 weeks.
    • There has only been one Samsung Windows RT tablet on sale. It has never turned on (as if the battery is dead) except for one time when it was stuck in some bios post test.
    • Today I finally heard that they were selling the Surface. I was hoping to see at least a nice display on the end of an isle. After searching through the entire store, I inadvertently found it mixed in with the cell phone cases and chargers! The tablets are on the other side of the store! No signs and no clear indication what the Surface even was. The only indication was the model number on the price tag. WTH!? It was the strangest display of a product and this is supposed to be Microsoft's new baby. They can create a presence in Times Square but can't get Best Buy to display their products correctly?

    What is Microsoft thinking??? This is the strangest launch of Windows I have ever seen. Based on how much money they are supposedly spending on the launch marketing, the results make no sense to me.

  • Harlock123n​ew

    I agree... Have been in and out of the best buys around me all holiday season and in the computer gear I have not found any sort of Surface presence even as their advertisements play on the screens dotting the background over in the entertainment area... Somewhat depressing as a windows developer.  

  • DCMonkey

    Wasn't the pre-Christmas expansion of Surface sales into non-MS stores a last minute thing (they were originally going to do it sometime in the new year)? If so, I'm not surprised Best Buy would put the display in some random less desirable place in the store. The best locations were probably already spoken for in advance of the Christmas shopping season.

  • Lizard​Rumsfeld

    , DCMonkey wrote

    Wasn't the pre-Christmas expansion of Surface sales into non-MS stores a last minute thing (they were originally going to do it sometime in the new year)? If so, I'm not surprised Best Buy would put the display in some random less desirable place in the store. The best locations were probably already spoken for in advance of the Christmas shopping season.

    Sure that's likely a factor, but again just highlights MS's incompetence with Surface overall.  Advertise the hell out of it, make it only available online and a few MS stores that most of the population don't have convenient access to, then with a couple of weeks to go before xmas figure "Hey!  Maybe we should make these available to more people!" and cram them into Best Buy.  I can't fathom what they expected to happen with limiting Surface to MS stores and online even if it was reviewed highly, which it wasn't.  It's just staggering to see MS seemingly living inside a titanium bubble lately.

    Not that I think availability was actually the #1 problem, RT is just a seriously flawed product right now and the RT hardware was behind the times from the get-go.  Even they were in more retail locations a month earlier I still believe the sales would not have had virtually any impact in the market.

  • warren

    Yeah.  This is another one of those things that really leaves the impression that Windows 8 was released before it was ready.  Microsoft needed to absolutely nail the touch experience to perfection but it's clear the actual Metro apps they launched with just weren't ready. If you're coming from behind (as they are relative to the iPad), your v1 product can't be less featureful than the competitor's v1 product from 3 years ago.

    Server 2012 has the same sort of rushed feel about it.  Technologically, Server 2012 is a masterpiece, but in terms of getting the word out effectively about what's new, what's amazing and what's important to learn, the training and documentation material has lagged waayyyy behind the release schedule.  Try searching for an important new feature like Storage Spaces on Bing.  You don't get Microsoft documentation at all..... you just get blog posts and news articles from a full year ago.  This just isn't right.

     

  • JoshRoss

    In 2012 Microsoft parted with Sinofsky and the Start button. Systemic failure ain't pretty, but it can be exciting to watch. It might be possible for Microsoft to beat Apple to the punch, and release a TV. The combination of XBOX + Kinect is much more compelling than the current Apple TV gizmo.

    The standalone media device is all but dead, with the exception of the Nintendo DS. Amazon, is doing an amazing job at creating hardware that they can sell at a loss. Google still rules search, and crapy phones. Samsung makes much of this fabulous stuff, with the exception of their own phones which feel sluggish and very much like cheap plastic. RIM has managed to stay in business, for now.

    What really boggles my mind, is that in five years everything is going to have a touch enabled computer in it whether it needs it or not. Washing machines, dishwashers, toilets, refrigerators, light switches, cameras, carpet cleaners, cars, car seats, watches, health monitoring devices, gas station pumps, restaurant tables, TV remotes, TVs, security systems, baby monitors, thermostats, radios, games, airplane seats, you-are-here kiosks, coffee makers, and all kinds of stuff that hasn't been invented yet will need a touch screen, and will get hacked by a twelve year old with nothing better to do than make your life a living hell.

    And you think BestBuy is having problems now?

    -Josh

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