Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Microsoft Could Use Barnes & Noble To Sell Its Tablet

I think the Holiday Season 2012 will be called "Tablet Wars" as companies vie for market share of their tablet.  Yesterday, was Tabeo, manufactured and sold exclusively at Toys R Us.  Now comes news that Microsoft plans to build some quick stores for the holiday season to sell its products with plans to build 200 - 300 more in the coming years.  "Microsoft Stores sell Windows PCs, Windows Phones, Microsoft and third-party software, games, peripherals and more. Microsoft also is going to sell its recently announced Surface PC/tablets through its Microsoft Stores in the U.S. and through select online Microsoft stores, as well." All to catch up to Apple.

But isn't Microsoft missing a big opportunity.  Through their heavy investment in Barnes & Noble, Microsoft has literally at their fingertips a partner with a huge retail presence to support their consumer outreach.  In addition, with B&N in so many college bookstores, they have the opportunity to hit the key age demographic.  So how come no word about using B&N to enable this Holiday retail presence?

Sure tons of malls are on their list; with many store closings there is definitely open space.  Isn't this why we see so many Halloween stores pop up for a month.  Still it takes personal to build the space, manage it, sell from it;  B&N provides the brick and mortar and the personnel to get an edge.  It simply seems odd that Microsoft has not taken advantage of the B&N investment to help their own cause.

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