Apple, Tesla Completely Embarrass Microsoft

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Ironically, the man who leads Tesla's retail segment, George Blankenship, masterminded Apple's, but was poached by Microsoft in 2009 to build out the company's real estate footprint.

Obviously, the Microsoft experiment didn't work out well, no matter how you slice it.

It certainly didn't drive meaningful sales, save xBox. In his defense, Blankenship's thing is that retail doesn't drive sales, it builds the brand and provides consumers with an excellent venue to experience your products.

The Tesla model not only works, it looks good as an Apple-inspired concept. It's respectable. If Blankenship was a college student, his professor wouldn't blindside him with a plagiarism charge at the end of his final senior semester.

He created something original at Tesla, showing great respect to Steve Jobs and the whole Apple legacy at the same time. It's a bit like a band such as Gaslight Anthem using Bob Dylan and Bruce Springsteen lyrics in their music.

They're tipping the hat to those who came before them in the most noble way. They're not pulling a Milli Vanilli or illegally lifting a famous riff and making it their own.

Tesla has done what Steve Jobs always channeled via Picasso: Good artists copy, great artists steal . It's probably better stated that great artists steal and then adapt the hot goods because that was Apple's way.

Apple took portable music devices (i.e., the Walkman) and gave us iPod. The snowball rolled uphill from there.

That's what Tesla has done in retail. It's not one of those things you can really explain, you have to experience it.

From there, I'm not sure how anybody with a clear head and somewhat objective mind doesn't come to the same conclusion as me.

Microsoft obviously designed most of its stores by taking photographs of an Apple Store and literally copying every last aspect. I would say "detail," but that makes it sound like Microsoft was thorough in its larceny.

There are no cosmetic distinctions. None.

Microsoft uses the same features as Apple -- products organized for us on work tables, it's own Genius Bar complete with appointment scheduling, an area for people to sit and chill while watching propaganda beamed in from Redmond. It even orders them throughout the store the exact same way Apple does.

At least Microsoft employees -- some of whom look embarrassed to be there -- wear different color shirts than the ones at Apple.

But there's one other distinction that sets Apple and Tesla as retailers apart from Microsoft: Steve Jobs and Elon Musk stock their stores with beautiful and unique products that people want to touch and aspire to buy. If you have the resources to make a purchase from either store, you get in line to do it .