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By | Kelly Fiveash 27th July 2009 11:28

Apple-apeing Microsoft spins out retail store prototype

Promises birthday parties, happy meals

An insight into what Microsoft’s new Apple store might look like “leaked” onto the interwebs late last week.

Gizmodo posted some screenshots of Microsoft’s retail store plans on Friday. The software giant later confirmed the designs were genuine.

Design and brand consultant firm Lippicott worked from prototypes and concepts provided by Microsoft, which Redmond said in a statement was “part of our process in briefing creative agencies... No final decisions have been made.

“As we previously announced, we are on track to open retail stores this Fall.”

The slides unsurprisingly show that Microsoft is keen to push its Surface and Windows 7 technologies, with both featuring prominently in the proposed store plans.

Microsoft has also tagged onto Apple’s Genius Bar concept, though the jury appears to still be out on what moniker to use. Answer Bar, Guru Bar and Windows Bar all feature in the Apple-apeing presentation.

And, just like McDonalds, Microsoft could also offer punters the opportunity to hold their birthday party at the new store.

In February Microsoft hired Wal-Mart veteran David Porter to head up its retail push.

According to CNet, MS will tentatively dip its toe into the feet-on-street market by opening up several stores, some of which will be on Apple’s doorstep, later this year. ®

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