The difference between Apple and Microsoft…

 

Apple-logo   v's 
Microsoft-logo

 

Earlier this year I was invited to Cupertino, to support a client's strategy session on possible approaches to entering a new market. While I was there, what better way to kill time over the weekend and fight off jet lag, than to visit Apple's 'home town' retail store. As you would expect, the store was like any other Apple store globally. Familiar both in terms of design and in how crowded it was… 

 

Photo-apple

 

Opposite this Apple Store was another technology outlet (which feels eerily similar to that of their erstwhile competitor), which was virtually empty…

 

Photo-microsoft

 

Given consumer propensity to purchase software on line, it seems that Microsoft isn't yet a High Street destination, in the way Apple is. Let's hope that along with the latest extension of their own branded hardware business, i.e., Surface, that Microsoft can also differentiate and invigorate their retail presence in such a way that captures the imagination and brings in the crowds. If not, I fear their foray into own branded retail will go the same way as the Zune Player.