Today, competition heated up for Apple here in the Hub. The Shops at Prudential Center welcomed in a new Microsoft Store, and hundreds of customers came out to celebrate.

“We want to be a part of the community,” said Microsoft’s Chief Marketing Officer Chris Capossela during the ribbon-cutting ceremony. To prove that, they presented more than one million dollars in software grants to local chapters of Junior Achievement, The Boston Foundation and the Rodman Ride for Kids.

“Having the store open here in Boston, in the Prudential Tower, is phenomenal,” said Emily Neill, president of Junior Achievement of Northern New England.

Neill claimed this money will go toward program impact and will help deliver more programs to young people. When working for a nonprofit, new software typically isn’t in the budget, according to Neill, who admitted, “What this will do is allow us to have more cutting edge technology.”

During the ceremony, Capossela announced that for the first time in 25 years, Microsoft was changing their corporate logo to reflect the one now in Boston’s new store. “We’re building off the momentum,” he said.

Microsoft’s Northeast District General Manager S. Craig Hodges couldn’t agree more. “This is an exciting day for Microsoft, for our partners and for our customers.”

When asked, “Why move to Boston?” he simply responded, “This is the center of innovation; the center of higher education.”

With Apple right across the street, Hodges admitted this new store “makes a statement.” What it proves, however, is that Microsoft is dedicated to the city.

Marlborough resident Shannon Jones spent the night in the Prudential Center to score tickets to the Lenny Kravitz concert Microsoft will be holding in the store this Saturday, August 25, at 6:30 p.m. “They’re trying to keep the energy high,” Jones said, who also admitted this will give Apple competition. “Microsoft is simple,” and the store will give customers an alternative.

To keep the energy level high, Boston Celtics Forward Paul Pierce will be in the store today at 6 p.m. to play Kinect with lucky customers. The celebration then continues with this Saturday’s performance by Lenny Kravitz.

For a sneak peek at the store from today’s ribbon-cutting ceremony, check out the photos below.

What do you think this new Microsoft Store will do for the city? How will it affect Apple?