Microsoft to Permanently Close Almost All Retail Stores

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Microsoft announced today that it will largely step back from retail. The company will permanently close all Microsoft Store locations globally, except for four stores that will remain open.

Microsoft emphasized that and the Xbox and Windows storefronts reach "up to 1.2 billion monthly customers in 190 markets." The company said that it will focus on digital retail moving forward.

The four Microsoft store locations that will remain open are New York City (Fifth Ave), London (Oxford Circus), Sydney (Westfield Sydney), and the Redmond campus location. All other locations worldwide will close.

The announcement is surprising as Microsoft opened their big London store as recently as last year. Before the announcement was made, Microsoft had yet to re-open any stores following restrictions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The computing giant has not said whether layoffs will follow the announcement and only stated that, "our commitment to growing and developing careers from this diverse talent pool is stronger than ever."

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