Written by Jon Harari.
Microsoft Corp. on Monday opens the doors to its first flagship store in the heart of Manhattan at Fifth Ave. and 53rd St. Â— the cross streets of a vibrant and historic local community and internationally recognized shopping destination. In the making for more than six years, the five-floor, 22,369 square-foot store features an assortment of best-in-class products and in-store services familiar at the companyÂ’s more than 110 retail locations, while offering new interactive experiences to allow customers to get hands-on with products in an immersive way.
Â“Our store on Fifth Avenue Â— as well as every other one of our locations across the U.S., Puerto Rico and Canada Â— is here to showcase the best of Microsoft to the local community,Â” said David Porter, corporate vice president, Worldwide Retail and Online Stores at Microsoft. Â“We exist to build relationships with our customers, one person at a time, and we are excited to do that on Fifth Avenue starting today.Â”
Since opening its first store in 2009, Microsoft has expanded its retail footprint and online presence to serve more than 1 billion customers through the companyÂ’s community-based retail strategy. Today, more than 80 percent of Americans live within 20 miles of a Microsoft store, with more than 110 stores across the U.S., Puerto Rico and Canada, as well as online stores operating in 189 countries.
The Microsoft Flagship Store is the companyÂ’s largest store to date, offering new immersive experiences to engage with customers and partners while serving as a technology hub for the community.
Celebrating a first in MicrosoftÂ’s history
Microsoft is celebrating the opening of its first flagship store with fans and the local New York City community with festivities throughout the day. MicrosoftÂ’s Chief Operating Officer Kevin Turner will host the inaugural ribbon-cutting ceremony joined by MicrosoftÂ’s Corporate Vice President of Devices Panos Panay, New York CityÂ’s Deputy Mayor for Strategic Policy Richard Buery and New York CityÂ’s Chief Technology Officer Minerva Tantoco. Following the ribbon-cutting ceremony outside of the main entrance, a curtain will drop Â— unveiling the inside of the Microsoft Flagship Store for the first time Â— and it will then be open to the public at noon.
Day-one customers can take advantage of great deals on Surface devices and low prices on Xbox One and accessories. In addition, the first 1,000 people in line will receive complimentary tickets to attend MicrosoftÂ’s community concert featuring Pitbull at Rockefeller CenterÂ®, located at Rockefeller Plaza on 48th Street between Fifth and Sixth Avenues, at 8 p.m. ET Monday night.
Get hands-on with MicrosoftÂ’s latest technology
The Microsoft Flagship Store offers best-in-class products that take advantage of powerful and versatile hardware to unlock new Windows 10 experiences, including new Surface, Lumia and Microsoft Band devices, Signature Edition PCs, Xbox One, Office, a variety of accessories, and more. Local New York residents and visitors alike are invited to experience the energy, expertise and service that Microsoft stores associates are known for.
Also, to celebrate the launch of Â“Halo 5: Guardians,Â” the Microsoft Flagship Store will host a special midnight launch event with fans starting Monday at 9 p.m. ET. During the event, the Â“Halo 5: LiveÂ” launch celebration show will be broadcast in the store, while fans and special guests get early gameplay, access to giveaways, food and more Â— all culminating with the release of one of the yearÂ’s most-anticipated Xbox titles. Fans will also have the chance to win a trip for two to Seattle for an exclusive tour of Xbox and 343 Industries, creators of the Halo franchise.
Commitment to serving New York
The Microsoft Flagship Store is another extension of the companyÂ’s deep ties to New York and a commitment to providing opportunities to empower local youth and businesses through technology, training and experiences. To start, Microsoft is presenting more than $3 million in technology grants to 14 nonprofit organizations that represent the cityÂ’s five boroughs. Recipients include All Star Code, Brooklyn Academy of Music, Brooklyn ChildrenÂ’s Museum, Directions for Our Youth, National September 11 Memorial & Museum, Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship, New York Botanical Garden, New York Hall of Science, Per Scholas, PowerMyLearning, Staten Island ChildrenÂ’s Museum, Staten Island MakerSpace, We Connect the Dots, and WomenÂ’s Housing Economic Development Corp.
Experience whatÂ’s in store for Microsoft
The Microsoft Flagship Store will offer a full lineup of products, devices and services. Microsoft associates will be able to help consumers no matter what device they purchased or where they purchased it from. As part of the companyÂ’s commitment to providing the best possible choice, value and service for customers, the Fifth Avenue store will also include The Dell Experience at the Microsoft Store. The Dell Experience at the Microsoft Store on the third floor gives customers the chance to experience the full range of innovative Dell products, including the XPS, Inspiron and Precision lines of end-user computing and Alienware gaming products Â— all built using Microsoft technology.
In collaboration with design firm Gensler, the Microsoft Flagship Store embraces the existing heritage and character of the neighborhood in the heart of Manhattan through restoration, along with the implementation of unique design elements, such as a faÃ§ade of glass utilizing minimal structural attachments to fully display all the store has to offer inside:
* Answer Desk. A one-stop shop for technical questions, troubleshooting and repairs regardless of device or where it was purchased. Free services include Windows 10 assessment, extended diagnostics on any device, software repair or support, virus and malware removal, PC tuneups, and more. * Community Theater. In the largest Microsoft store theater space to date, customers can learn from experts how to use MicrosoftÂ’s latest and most popular products for their everyday work and lives. The theater is used for training sessions and also hosts activities for local community organizations and other in-store events. * Immersive video walls. High-definition video walls and digital signage will be featured throughout the Microsoft Flagship Store to engage directly with visitors while streaming videos, images and information. A two-story video wall behind the Answer Desk can be seen on either one of the two floors, customers can play Xbox One on video walls while surrounded in directional sound, and the Community Theater features a large plasma touch-screen running Windows that can be used during training sessions. * Culture Wall. Designed to display digital imagery representative of the vibrant Fifth Avenue shopping district culture, the exterior wall is part of MicrosoftÂ’s vision of becoming an integral member of the community. The culture wall will display noncommercial, artistic images that will complement the architecture and faÃ§ade of the building.
About Microsoft Stores
In 2009, Microsoft opened its first Microsoft store in Scottsdale, Ariz. Since then, Microsoft has opened more than 110 retail locations across the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico and welcomed more than 1 billion customers to its full-line, specialty and online Microsoft store properties in 189 markets globally. Microsoft stores are committed to delivering outstanding choice, value and service for each customer, featuring an assortment of best-in-class products, including computers, software and games to music, tablets, phones and wearables. For a list of Microsoft stores, visit http://microsoftstore.com/locations.
Microsoft (Nasdaq Â“MSFTÂ” @microsoft) is the leading platform and productivity company for the mobile-first, cloud-first world, and its mission is to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more.