In an effort to continue to throw stones at Apple, Microsoft is going to start opening retail stores this Fall…right next to Apple retail stores.  From CNET:

“As we progress on our retail strategy there will be scenarios where we have stores in proximity to Apple,” a representative told CNET News. “We are on track to open stores in the fall time frame.”

The fall timing is not surprising. One would assume Microsoft would want to have the stores open in time for Windows 7’s October 22 retail launch and for the holiday selling season.

Speaking at the Worldwide Partner Conference in New Orleans on Wednesday, Microsoft Chief Operating Officer Kevin Turner told people to “stay tuned” for more news on the retail front.

“And stay tuned, because we’re going to have some retail stores opened up that are opened up right next door to Apple stores this fall,” he said. “Stay tuned, just stay tuned.”

When I go to the Apple store, it’s usually to kill some time and play with all the cool products they make.  Meanwhile, every Microsoft product I own is usually a piece of shit that riles me up into a blinding rage, which only gets worse because I can’t take anything out on an inanimate piece of software.  So I, for one, am thankful for these new Microsoft stores, and the employees that will be working there, if only for giving me a place to drop off my fury.  If I’m told even once that I need to download some service pack before I can try a product in-store, I’m taking a crap on the floor while I wait.  That’s just smart shopping.