Microsoft opens first retail store in Europe
Microsoft’s Flagship Store in London opened today, with crowds expected to flock to Oxford Circus to get their hands on the company’s latest technology and experiences.
This is Microsoft’s first retail store in Europe as the software giant looks to boost its physical presence and compete with other tech companies offering unique in-store experiences for customers.
The Microsoft store is located on Oxford Circus in the center of London’s famous shopping district – just down the street from Apple’s flagship Regent Street location. London will be Microsoft’s third flagship destination, along with Sydney and New York City.
Covering 22,000 square feet over three floors, the store has a modern feel, with lots of space and wood and glass surfaces. Visitors will be greeted on the ground floor by a large video wall and Surface devices on tables, with the McLaren on their right and the HoloLens mixed-reality headset to their left.
A wooden spiral staircase or lifts will take them to the Gaming Lounge on the first floor, where they can play the latest Xbox and PC titles in high-quality gaming chairs and professional pods, purchase third-party laptops and accessories and get tech support, trainings, repairs and advice from the Answer Desk.
All visitors can create their own personalised Surface Type Cover with Surface Design Lab, featuring a range of designs that can be etched directly onto the cover. They can also take photos in the Selfie Area.
The enterprise area on the second floor is a place to support, train and grow businesses no matter where they are on their digital transformation journey. From small companies and educational institutions to enterprise customers, the Product Advisors and Cloud Technical
Experts will help customers discover, deploy and use Microsoft 365 and other resources to solve business challenges such as AI, data security, collaboration and workplace efficiencies. This floor also contains an area for hosting events, as well as meeting rooms and a Showcase space for demonstrating how customers, including Carlsberg and Toyota, are digitally transforming.
It is also the most accessible store Microsoft has ever opened, with buttons to open doors, lower desks to help those in wheelchairs and Xbox Adaptive Controllers available for gamers with restricted movement.
The 150 Store Associates welcoming visitors speak a total of 45 languages, and selected members of the team can also communicate in British Sign Language. John Carter, Senior Store Manager at the store, said the staff are a mix of ages, genders, ethnicities and abilities, and had all gone through six weeks of training to “deliver our customer-obsessed culture” from when the doors open at 11am on July 11.