Confused by Windows 8? Best Buy hopes it can help.
The consumer-electronics retailer is hoping to capitalize on Friday's launch of Windows 8. It's trying to lure customers with exclusive computers and staffers trained to explain and demonstrate the new operating system from Microsoft Corp.
Windows 8 has a new look that's intended to create a seamless experience for users, whether they're on PCs, tablets or smartphones. Featuring a colorful array of tiles that fill the screen instead of the familiar start menu and icons, it's designed especially for touch-sensitive screens. Windows 8 will come preinstalled on almost all new PCs.
Best Buy Co. spent three years coming up with a plan for the launch, according to Jason Bonfig, vice president for computing at Best Buy.
That includes two years of developing 45 exclusive Windows 8 computers and laptops designed with manufacturers such as Hewlett-Packard Co. and AsusTek Computer Inc. Nearly half of those computers feature touch screens.
Best Buy also spent 50,000 hours training its staff members to show customers the ins and outs of Windows 8, as it's very different from its predecessors.
In addition, its Geek Squad technical service staff created 12 two-minute tutorials available online, each explaining a different feature of Windows 8.
"The demo experience becomes very, very important because of newness of touch feature," Bonfig said.