When Windows 10's app portal was renamed the Microsoft Store not long ago, it led to people scratching their heads: why change the name of a portal that revolves so heavily around apps? Because it might not revolve exclusively around software, apparently. Frequent code diver Walking Cat has discovered a hidden "Shop Surface" section of the Microsoft Store app that, as you might guess, includes Surface PCs and their accessories. You could shop for a Surface Pro without ever firing up a web browser.
We've asked Microsoft if it can say whether or not this hardware store will reach the public any time soon. There's no guarantee, but it's clear that the Redmond crew has at least been thinking about it. Why include code for a Surface section if you don't intend to use it? Really, this looks to be part of a broader strategy that will use the Microsoft Store app to offer products of all kinds, including hardware -- just so long as you don't need music.
It's safe to say this is a stark contrast with Apple, which continues to have separate app and hardware stores and actually removed mobile app browsing on the desktop. Where Apple is backing away from consolidation, Microsoft is betting that you want more of it.