Microsoft has opened the doors on its first ever UK flagship store in central London.
Despite having primacy in the UK’s computing marketplace, Microsoft has (perhaps surprisingly) never opened a dedicated store on these shores. All that has now changed, however, with its flagship London store situated on the bustling Oxford Circus – through which around 600,000 people pass every single day.
Though this is Microsoft’s first store, the company has been anything but conservative with the venture. The shop covers some 22,000 square feet across three floors, and even has a McLaren Senna available that visitors can sit inside to play Forza Motorsport 7.
To complete the brand aesthetic, staff members are clad in red, green, blue and yellow t-shirts, to mirror the colours on the Microsoft logo. Between them, these staff members speak some 45 languages.
The shop is expected to stock the latest Microsoft devices – from Surface devices to HoloLens and Xbox systems. It’s also determined to offer its customers real experiences, outside of the more typical retail environment. For example, those heading to the Xbox lounge can enjoy trying out the latest games from professional pods containing top-of-the-range gaming chairs.
Elsewhere, the Community Theatre teaches shop-goers how to code, whilst the Answer Desk has staff equipped to deal with all manner of queries about repairs, support, training and more.
Business owners are also catered for at the second floor Enterprise Area. Housing product advisors and cloud technical experts, this section is the place to go for advice on Microsoft 365 – or any other resources designed to solve business challenges. It seems the aim of this area is to become a respected and well-known business hub, with meeting and conference spaces available to hire. There’s also the Showcase area, where existing Microsoft evangelists (including Carlsberg and Toyota) are expected to speak about their own digital transformation projects.
Head of Microsoft UK Cindy Rose told pocket-lint.com at the store’s grand opening: “Our ambition is that this is a place where people can do so much more than just shop. It’s a place where they can learn new skills, where businesses can grow and where we can build long term links with the communities in our neighbourhood.”