Two photos nicely illustrate the disaster Microsoft is today

“Steve Ballmer is chief executive officer of Microsoft,” Matthew Yglesias reports for Slate.

“He’s been in the job for some time, but he recently announced that he’s stepping down,” Yglesias reports. “The fact that Ballmer’s departure was announced without the simultaneous announcement of a successor is a good indication he was pushed out the door by the board of directors.”

Yglesias reports, “And these photos taken Sunday around noon at the Fashion Centre at Pentagon City in Arlington, Va., show why… There were zero shoppers in the Microsoft store. At noon. On a Sunday in December at peak retail shopping season.”

Microsoft store (left) vs. Apple Retail Store (right) -photos by Matthew Yglesias
Microsoft store (left) vs. Apple Retail Store (right) -photos by Matthew Yglesias

Read more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “russ” for the heads up.]


  1. I was recently in Somerset Mall in Troy MI – which has a huge Apple Store on Level 1, and a Microsoft Store facing it on Level 2 of the mall. This was after the iPad Air was released, but before the iPad mini Retina was released …

    Apple Store – more staff in the store than I could count, more customers in the store than I could count.

    Microsoft Store – 14 people total in the store – 9 were staff, 3 were playing Xbox games, 1 person was getting service of some kind for a laptop from one of the staff, and the final person was looking at Windows phones. Of the 5 “customers” 3 had Apple bags in their hands or near them (on the floor at the feet of the Xbox players).

    You could not find a more polar opposite sight in that Mall that day.

    1. I know that place. I’ll visit the area for Christmas.

      The MS store in a mall reminds me of the old SNL skit about the Scotch Tape store in the mall. No one ever visited there either.

  2. I make it to the Tysons Corner Mall in VA every couple months for work in the area. I always like to walk the mall to compare the Apple and Microsoft stores. When Microsoft first opened, a bunch of people would hang out outside – OUTSIDE – playing the two xbox’s, and never more than 4 people (plus salespeople) inside. Now, I rarely see anyone playing their xbox’s, and I usually just see their salespeople chatting with each other inside. Apple store on the other hand, lots of people, too many to count as I walk by. I’d say “amazing” but it’s all about the product; there is nothing amazing about it.

  3. Well, Best Buy did prove it’s chops to direct people to the goods it wants to sell. Best Buy had Microsoft Surface 2 as it’s number one device last week, and being in a BB store last week, they were effectively directing people to the Microsoft display (Many units available along with complete Samsung display of goods in each and every aisle of the store), with very few people looking at the lone iPad and iPad mini on display.

    1. I wonder how much Microsoft is paying big-box stores to promote their stuff. The advertising blitz for the Surface is just constant. It’s like saturation bombing with feces. If I see another one of their idiotic commercials, I’ll scream!

      Whoops, there’s another one.

      It seems to me that they’re pushing a little too hard. T’will be interesting to see the post-holiday numbers.

  4. Hey, MDN, why no link to the article from ?2007? whose author famously predicted, “I give Apple two years before this venture into retail space is written off as a bad experiment.” ??!? The prediction was probably quite accurate, it just misnamed the company!

  5. I went into the microsoft store ,@st. johns town center FL ,twice this weekend and both time I could see employees stand around talking to each other and never came over to help me. Some were looking at their phones, I guess checking out pics or messages.

    1. You probably looked too much like a douche hipster, and by implication Apple customer, to them.

      If you want to be served at the Microsoft store, you need to grow a neck beard, have scraggly teeth, and not shower for two weeks, like your typical IT doofus.

  6. Wow, that’s pretty pathetic and sad. It represents a true image of Ballmer’s complete cluelessness and ineptitude. I doubt he really cares though. He’ll soon be leaving with his golden parachute and living a life of ease. Once he’s gone, he will be a retired man with know prospects for future employment. Who would want to bring on a sweaty simian brute with no social skills or air of professionalism.

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