Microsoft closing all physical stores as part of 'strategic change'

Microsoft Store London
Microsoft Store London (Image credit: Windows Central)

What you need to know

  • Microsoft is closing all physical Microsoft Store locations.
  • Microsoft will invest more into its digital storefronts.
  • Microsoft will repurpose some physical locations, such as its Microsoft Experience Centers in London, New York City, Sydney, and Redmond campus.

Microsoft announced that all physical Microsoft Stores will be closed. The change is part of a "strategic change" and will see Microsoft push more effort and money into its digital storefronts. Microsoft announced the change in a new post today.

Microsoft states that its retail team members "will continue to serve customers from Microsoft corporate facilities and remotely providing sales, training, and support." Microsoft will also continue to invest in its digital storefronts on its website as well as on Xbox consoles and Windows 10.

Microsoft will "reimagine" some spaces, repurposing them to "serve all customers," according to Microsoft. The Microsoft Experience Centers in London, New York City, Sydney, and on Redmond campus are among the stores that will be repurposed.

Microsoft highlights that since it closed physical stores in response to the current global pandemic, retail team members have helped small business and education customers with virtual training and customer support. Microsoft states that its "retail team members will serve consumers, small-business, education, and enterprise customers, while building a pipeline of talent with transferable skills."

While physical stores will close, Microsoft points out that its digital storefronts reach 190 markets around the globe.

CNBC's Todd Haselton reports that all employees from Microsoft Stores will have a chance to stay at Microsoft. A Microsoft spokesperson later confirmed this to us as well.

Microsoft's news post states that "The closing of Microsoft Store physical locations will result in a pre-tax charge of approximately $450M, or $0.05 per share." These will be recorded in the current quarter, which ends on June 30, 2020.

Sean Endicott
News Writer and apps editor

Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at