Sadly about two weeks ago my modem died and I had to run around trying to find a DSL modem that wasn't a total piece of junk. Wound up having to go to Best Buy. They had a kazillion of the modems, but the boxes said exclusive to AT&T customers. I went over to the Geek Squad to find out if they were truly "exclusive" or could be use with other DSL services, as I'm not with AT&T and couldn't even if I wanted because of where I live. The Geek Squad was totally clueless about those products, so I asked about the other modems, but again clueless. I'm on a Mac, and most of the modems are packaged only talking about PC. I wound up having to dig out the cell phone and questioned my IT careered hubby. It took the two of us to decide which would probably work for us. It's shameful Best Buy is selling products they claim their Geek Squad has the knowledge about, but know nothing. They even told me to contact my ISP, which was worthless advice considering my ISP will not officially support Mac. I hate Best Buy.
I agree, Radio Shack is definitely a "go for components" place. It's a niche market, which is why it's still around. Where else can the electronics tweakers and experimenters get their components (besides the now available modern convenience of being able to shop via Internet)? There'll always be a need for a Radio Shack, but not sure if the volume of sales needed to stay open will be there.
And while the guys at Radio Shack might not always have been able to answer our questions, they always tried and did make effort to check around and even sometimes called up some of their engineer buddies, instead of giving me the Best Buy Geek Squad blank stares and the "I don't know." with no helpful input. I don't know how many times I've been near where Geek Squad was helping people with their computers and were clueless, but I knew exactly how to fix the problem. Sad when a casual customer knows more than the technical "expert" employees.