microsoft stores

Okay, that headline is a tad misleading as trading in a MacBook Air for a Surface Pro 3, especially one with the coveted Core i7 processor, is far from 1:1 value. Still, I did bring in my MacBook Air (2011) to see how the process went, and I managed to pick up that Core i7 Surface Pro 3 with 256 GB of storage.

Here is how it all went.

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Ever since the Surface Pro 3 announcement, the future of the Surface Pro 2 was in question. Would Microsoft continue to sell both or focus on their new redesigned Surface Pro 3, and what about Surface 2? The story is coming into focus a bit as it looks like Microsoft is putting the Surface Pro 2 out to pasture.

Windows Phone Central has learned through various Microsoft Stores that all or most stock of the Surface Pro 2 and Surface Pro 2 accessories are being sent back to Microsoft. A few stores are keeping units on hand for customer issues, should any arise, but many stores now have zero stock with no plans to carry it any longer. It is not clear if other retailers are following suit or if Microsoft is mandating this only for their own stores.

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Update 1PM ET: We now have the full list of stores with this limited offer, listed below

Here’s a special deal for you folks who live near an official Microsoft Store: you can pick up the AT&T Nokia Lumia 1020 for $0 with a new two year contract. How’s that for an offer you can’t refuse?

The offer is only good through November 3rd and as we said, in-store only, so don’t bother looking for this online anywhere as you won’t find it. Evidently, Microsoft is sending out emails to notify people of the deal and a few of you are snatching it up. Forum member ‘dkp23’ even posted a screenshot to verify its authenticity and indeed, we’ve heard from a few of you separately that this deal is legit.

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A few days ago, Cnet reported that Amazon.com was running a promotion for certain Xbox 360 games whereby a customer can trade up for the Xbox One version (which won’t be out until December 31st).

How does it work? Customers who purchased one of select Xbox 360 games, including Call of Duty: Ghosts, Need for Speed Rivals, Madden NFL 25, and NBA 2K14, can return the game for a $25 credit and a $25 trade in value. Since Xbox One games will cost $60, that leaves a $10 difference for the purchase. Such a system will allow you to play the game for a few months on your Xbox 360 instead of having to wait for the Xbox One version.

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Just a quick reminder for those of you lucky enough to live in certain areas, Microsoft will be cutting the ribbon on no less than four new retail Stores this weekend in the US. Those citeis are

  • Huntington Station, NY (9/28)
  • White Plains, NY (9/28)
  • Salem, NH (9/29)
  • Newark, DE (9/29)

That’s sure to keep the folks at Microsoft busy and since we conveniently live near Huntington Station, we’ll be there to cover the opening event starting at 10:30am (ribbon cutting around 10:45, we hear). From there, you can collect your wristbands for the free concert later in the day, which features John Legend and Taio Cruz. Also on Saturday, football star Curtis Martin will there too...

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Today, Microsoft threw the doors open to their Freehold, NJ store marking yet another feather in the growing chain's cap. While we're always excited to see another Store open up, especially on the East coast, what makes this opening just a tad hilarious is the curious Apple employees who evidently showed up.

As it is well known, Microsoft has been opening their stores wherever Apple has theirs (including our own location) and perhaps setting up for some interesting drama. In this case, reader Trav sent us the above photo of the brave Apple employees who were checking the competition.

Hey, we don't begrudge Apple and we more than welcome them to the fold even if for just a visit. 

Thanks, Trav, for the tip

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With the announcement of a new Microsoft Store being built for Boston, lots of our readers anxiously await to see if Redmond will be coming to their areas soon. While Microsoft does not pre-announce these stores too far in advance, one way you can easily figure out is by simply looking up where they are hiring.

Yup, on the Microsoft Store Careers site they have many positions open and looking to be filled. What's more, these jobs are in cities not yet announced (but you can bet they will be soon). So, are you lucky?

We are. A store is opening in Huntington Station, NY, most likely at the Walt Whitman Mall. What else is at that shopping center? Why one the busiest Apple stores in New York (besides the Manhattan store). It certainly appears that Microsoft is gunning for Cupertino on their own turf and we'll be there to cover it.

Without further ado, the unofficial Microsoft Store list as compiled by reader Travis:

  • White Plains, NY
  • Huntington Station, NY
  • Newark, DE
  • Overland Park, KS
  • Salem, NH
  • Orlando, FL
  • Arlington, VA
  • Bridgewater, NJ (Bridgewater Commons)
  • Freehold, NJ (Raceway Mall)
  • Danbury, CT (Danbury Fair Mall)

Great to see the East coast finally getting some stores. Celebrate in comments. Thanks, Travis B., for the list; Image via the Denver Post

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All good things must come to an end and so does the Windows Phone Challenge at Microsoft Stores in the US as April 12 was designated to be the last day (Evidently the contest is still going on in many stores)

Although the Smoked by Windows Phone Challenge will remain forever controversial, there is little doubt it made waves and got the OS noticed (hey, any publicity is good publicity). Guess we didn't figure Microsoft were tallying up every single win (and loss) though perhaps it shouldn't be a surprise. Here are the results:

  • Won - 40,522
  • Lost - 462

We're assuming that these numbers are just for the US at the various Microsoft Stores and don't include the expanded contest in places like Italy, Malaysia and Brazil (to name a few). Even Nokia picked up and ran with it in London.

If our math is correct, Windows Phone has won 98.87% of the challenges which is, umm, really high. Of course, we all know that the challenge favors Windows Phone as the tasks are predefined, but Microsoft has made some changes to make it more fair to challengers.

We're sure the naysayers will still cry foul though. Fair enough. The publicity stunt started a great conversation about the efficiency of using your smartphone for everyday tasks and put the spotlight on Windows Phone for once, something we rather enjoyed seeing.

Source: Microsoft Store (Facebook)

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Microsoft's ever increasingly famous marketing campaign, Smoked by Windows Phone, is really stepping up the game by improving the $100 prize for beating a Windows Phone with a competitor handset. The challenge, which originated at CES 2012 where Ben (the 'PC Guy') Rudolph began taking on smartphones from other platforms (the iPhone, Android and Blackberry handsets), puts handsets against one another to see which is more efficient at common smartphone tasks.

Those who lose against the Windows Phone have to publicly announce their defeat, "I've been smoked by a Windows Phone", but for those who manage to best Microsoft's OS, they're handed $100. Things are heating up as Microsoft has raised the reward to $1,000. Yes, $1,000. But not in cash.

Should you manage to beat a Windows Phone in the Smoked by Windows Phone challenge at the participating Microsoft Stores, you'll walk away with a Hunger Games Special Edition PC, valued at $1,000, to celebrate the release of the upcoming film. What if you lose? You can swap your smartphone for a Windows Phone (excluding the Lumia 800), right there, right then. It's a "win win" situation.

The challenge will close on March 29th, opening times are from 9am - 10pm. Be sure to read the official rules.

Source: Microsoft Store, via: Down Right Wireless; thanks SeNiLe911 for the tip!

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Ben Rudolph has been challenging consumers who wield smartphones on other platforms to see which is faster with common tasks, which began at CES 2012 with some positive results. He's now bringing the $100 challenge to Microsoft Stores across southern California, starting today at the South Coast Plaza Microsoft Store in Costa Mesa, CA (between 2pm - 8pm).

The rules remain the same. Should a challenger win against Windows Phone they'll pocket $100. But should they lose...

Be sure to follow Ben on Twitter for updates on the action.

Source: Windows Phone Team Blog

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We're really starting to hate the fact that there are barely any Microsoft Stores around as they keeping having some great deals. The latest promotion runs from now till February 14th (that'd be Valentine's Day for you Forever Aloners out there) and involves getting one year of Zune Pass for free with the purchase of a new Windows Phone.

At $10 a month that's about a $120 value and if you're in the States, Zune Pass is actually worth it. So keep that in mind when shopping around for the special gift in the coming weeks.

Thanks, Derek, for the photo

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Should you be eager to get your hands on the Lumia 900, Nokia's top Windows Phone, then you might want to check out your local Microsoft Store where you can pre-order your own 900 for just $25 down.  Still no word on what the full price will be for the Lumia 900 and the pre-order offer isn't available online.  The 4G handset is set to arrive on March 18th for $99 at AT&T, which other sources have since confirmed.

The 4.3" AMOLED screen, 1.4Ghz processor, 16GB storage, 8MP rear camera (with front-facing camera) specifications are bound to peak interest enough to be reserved for a small upfront fee. 

Source: The Verge

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Just in case $39 was too much at a T-Mobile store for the Nokia Lumia 710, you can head to your local (har har) Microsoft Store and pick up that bad boy for the low-low price of FREE. Of course, they're just not throwing free phones at customers as you do have to commit to a 2-year contract. But hey, that's not a bad deal.

And since the chances of you actually living near a MS store are a bit slim (you can check here though), you can also order by phone or online, making this a pretty good deal to share with others.

Source: Microsoft Store Online; Thanks, Justin W., for the tip

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Yesterday, it was revealed that the Nokia Lumia 800 will be sold here in the US through Microsoft's growing chain of stores as well as online. Since there are no plans for any US carriers to sell the 800, buying it unlocked through Microsoft is really the only way consumers here can grab that phone.

The big question everyone has was what GSM bands would this feature? We just met with Microsoft and Nokia and figured we'd ask. Turns out, it will be optimized for AT&T, which depending on your current carrier (and loyalty) is good or bad news. Here are the bands it will support:

  • WCDMA/HSPA+: 850/1900/2100
  • GSM/EDGE: 850/900/1800/1900

No details on exact release dates but we're probably looking at just a few weeks at both Microsoft Stores and their online market. It should be a pretty good score though for those who want the smaller Lumia as the 900 can be quite large for small hands.

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We've heard of this deal before but now we can see the flyer for itself to verify: if you live near a Microsoft Store and you spend $499 or more, presumably on a new desktop or laptop PC, you can pick up a free Windows Phone, carrier free.

Eligible phones include the discontinued HTC Surround, LG Quantum, HTC HD7 and Dell Venue Pro. No word if this will extend to cover Generation 2 devices, though we'll keep an eye out for anything. Here's a list of all the Microsoft Stores to see if you live near one.

via: Fat Wallet; Thanks for everyone who tipped us in the past on this

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