One Theory About Why Microsoft Will Only Sell The Surface At Its Stores

Microsoft Store employee super friendlyA friendly Microsoft salesperson will help you with your Surface

Photo: Matt Rosoff Business Insider

Microsoft’s decision to only sell the Surface tablet at its retail stores and through its online store is a bit of a head-scratcher.It’s like Microsoft is intentionally trying to limit the tablet’s success.

Citi analyst Walter Pritchard has a theory about why Microsoft is doing it. He met with Windows executives at Microsoft and threw out this idea in a research note:

At launch, distribution strategy will be 100% first party, which doesn’t scale and is counter to history. We sense desire to keep the price tag low ($500) is driving the strategy right now more than anything and even at launch, MSFT may need to look to third-party retail outside the U.S.

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