Microsoft Opens Download Store

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After initial launches in Europe and Korea, Microsoft has now opened its online download store to U.S. consumers, which apparently is another nail in the coffin of shrinkwrapped, prepackaged software, as TechCrunch reports.

What’s interesting about this is that it seems to mimic Apple’s App Store, but instead of being for cell phones, it’s for regular desktop software products, the Zune, and more. Microsoft is also selling some hardware, such as Xbox 360 games and controllers, which obviously need to be shipped. But as more and more stores open that mimic the download model, it’s only a matter of time before everything software-wise is sold this way—and that of course includes for mobile devices as well as regular PCs.

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