NEW YORK — Microsoft opened its first of 34 holiday stores in Times Square tonight.
“It’s been a momentous day for us,” Microsoft COO B. Kevin Turner told a crowd milling about Times Square, referring to the launches earlier today of Windows 8 and Surface.
Then the cloth covering the store was dropped, unveiling the store and its cheering employees inside.
Inside the store, the Surface tablet was everywhere — displayed on tables, its covers displayed on the walls, along with packaged software boxes of Windows 8.
The store itself is compact. Travis Walter, Microsoft general manager of strategy and retail stores, did not have the exact square footage but said it was about half the size of the Bellevue Microsoft Store.
Outside, some Microsoft employees were looking on in pride at the store and at the shoppers playing with and asking questions about the Surface tablets.
“We are all so proud that people want to come and see the store and see the devices,” said Stevie Bathiche, director of research in Microsoft’s applied sciences group and one of the brains behind Surface.
Microsoft is opening 34 of these temporary holiday “pop-up” stores in various U.S. cities to better reach consumers as it begins selling Windows 8, Surface and Windows 8 devices. The other stores open tomorrow.