Feeds

Microsoft store staff to hold all night vigil for Surface 2

Rapper Pitbull to lead charismatic group prayers for slablet revival

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

Microsoft is planning a midnight launch for its next-generation Surface fondleslabs, to be capped by a performance by rapper Pitbull.

Reg readers may recall that Redmond pulled a similar stunt when it launched the Surface RT last October, holding witching-hour events at the 32 pop-up stores it opened for the holiday season.

This time around, the launch will be comparatively low-key. Microsoft now operates more than 70 retail stores, including pop-ups and permanent locations, but only ten of them – all in the US – have been singled out for the late-night Surface 2 kickoff on October 22.

Participating locations include the Microsoft retail stores in White Plains, New York; Boston, Massachusetts; Miami, Florida; Atlanta, Georgia; Arlington, Virginia; Oak Brook, Illinois; Austin, Texas; San Francisco, California; Scottsdale, Arizona; and Microsoft's home turf of Bellevue, Washington.

Pitbull

Pitbull, Windows user (Credit: Eva Rinaldi)

Sufficiently caffeinated customers who queue up for the events starting at 10pm on October 21 will be asked to participate in "a series of fun challenges," and one contest winner from each store will be flown to Orlando, Florida the next morning to attend a special performance by Pitbull.

Orlando locals can also attend the concert if they show up for the grand opening of the new Microsoft store at the Mall at Millenia, also starting at 10pm the same night. The first 1,500 people in line will receive a pair of tickets, and the first 100 will additionally be admitted to a meet-and-greet session with the rapper before the show.

This is of course assuming that there are 1,500 people in the queue. Redmond made much ballyhoo over its original Surface launch, but as we now know, actual sales didn't exactly meet expectations. Back-of-napkin calculations suggest there were as many as six million Surface RT units in Microsoft's warehouses when it took a $900m charge on its unsold inventory in July.

Microsoft insists this time will be different. Last week it even made the eyebrow-raising claim that its online store had nearly sold out of Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2, and certain configurations are already marked for ship dates well past the official launch.

Still, the decision to kick off its new tablets with a rap show is a somewhat dicey one for Microsoft, given its history with hip-hop artists. In October 2012, rapper Machine Gun Kelly was asked to leave a Microsoft store in Atlanta after a profanity-laden performance in which he reportedly trashed several computers.

This Reg hack suspects Pitbull will show more decorum than that. As for whether the combination of Pitbull and Surface 2 is sufficiently enticing for customers to literally lose sleep over it, however, we'll just have to wait until midnight on October 22 to find out. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
The Return of BSOD: Does ANYONE trust Microsoft patches?
Sysadmins, you're either fighting fires or seen as incompetents now
Microsoft: Azure isn't ready for biz-critical apps … yet
Microsoft will move its own IT to the cloud to avoid $200m server bill
Oracle reveals 32-core, 10 BEEELLION-transistor SPARC M7
New chip scales to 1024 cores, 8192 threads 64 TB RAM, at speeds over 3.6GHz
US regulators OK sale of IBM's x86 server biz to Lenovo
Now all that remains is for gov't offices to ban the boxes
Object storage bods Exablox: RAID is dead, baby. RAID is dead
Bring your own disks to its object appliances
VMware vaporises vCHS hybrid cloud service
AnD yEt mOre cRazy cAps to dEal wIth
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
7 Elements of Radically Simple OS Migration
Avoid the typical headaches of OS migration during your next project by learning about 7 elements of radically simple OS migration.
BYOD's dark side: Data protection
An endpoint data protection solution that adds value to the user and the organization so it can protect itself from data loss as well as leverage corporate data.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?