Apple Plans Major Store Space Reorganization

February 12, 2009

On the heels of an iPhone/iPod display table make-over, Apple plans to entirely reorganize and refocus space within the stores to emphasize customer education, and software over hardware. The change would be the third major interior design for the stores, which has included the debut wood floors and the September, 2006 conversion to a stainless interior. According to plans still being rolled out, hardware will become a secondary focus of the stores’ marketing efforts, making way for a spotlight on applications and the digital features of Apple products. The front section of the store will promote, “Why You’ll Love a Mac,” catching visitors when they first enter the store. The section will have signage and brochures pointing out the advantages of a Mac over a Windows PC. The next section of the store will focus on the iLife suite of software applications, and will provide information how they can contribute to a Mac user’s digital lifestyle. And in the third section of the reorganized interior, Apple will highlight the iWork software applications. The changes seems to coincide with a switch in how iPods and iPhones are being marketed–the focus now seems to be the 20,000 applications that are available, rather than the hardware itself. The reorganization could begin as early as next week, but could take several weeks for staff retraining and graphics change-outs.

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{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

john February 12, 2009 at 0902

great! this shift will bring more consumers into understanding the difference between the OS’es, and the advantages of the Mac OS, and its’ advantages over Windows via the great integration with it’s software! Nice Call!

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switchtoamac February 12, 2009 at 0941

Apple continuing to take action to attract new users to the Mac is clearly the right thing to do. Growth over the past few years has been fueled by switchers and it’s nice to see Apple continue to target these customers especially given the economic backdrop

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Steve February 12, 2009 at 1013

I believe this is a great move. Apple uniquely has the ability to address perception issues. Unfortunately, by shrinking the software section in favor of iPod add-ons, they’ve only added to the perception of limited software availability. This is a VERY good move and long over due.

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Peter February 12, 2009 at 1114

“[...] by shrinking the software section in favor of iPod add-ons, they’ve only added to the perception of limited software availability.”

Of course, all the software being shown is Apple software. Third-party developers need not apply.

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Sandra February 12, 2009 at 1114

Good move. I was in Apple store in Dallas last week and as owner of two Macs, 3 iPods and an iPhone, software was what I bought, iLife, Bento and an iPod case. It was all in the back of the store, which is where the action was. Still spent over $200. Economy is slow. Software sells.

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John Dingler February 12, 2009 at 1249

Because of the pausity of 3rd party software in my local Apple Store at Victoria Gardens, Rancho Cucamonga, CA, I look forward to seeing a greater selection and, no Steve, the reorganization will not likely over-emphasize its own software, presumably you mean at the expense of that of its partners’.

Sandra, I too spent about that much. I bought fonts, a gift card, the Symphony Orchestra Jam Pack, and ArtText.

And, you know what? The other stores were as if in a ghost town. It’s truly astounding that an Apple Store is now considered the shopping center’s anchor, especially when in the later part of the last century Tom Brokow authoritatively pronounced that Apple is dead. Oh my!

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Chris Maxcer February 12, 2009 at 1406

I definitely enjoy getting hands on with all the new Apple hardware, but when I’m not in a position to shell out for a new Mac or iPod — or even for a new case or pair of headphones — I do want to consider additional software.

The last time I was in an Apple Store, I poured over the available software titles that were crammed on a shelf in the back . . . and I remember thinking, “This is a pain, and I know there’s way more titles than these here — I’ll have to browse online.”

This is a great move.

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Ernie February 12, 2009 at 1510

It sounds like someone is starting to worry about Windows 7.

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Johnny Mozzarella February 12, 2009 at 1811

My local mall has become a virtual ghost town with the exception of the Apple Store. Several national chains have closed down and many high-end retailers have tanked.

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Brian February 12, 2009 at 2055

Worry about Windows 7? LOL, that’s a good one. Win 7 is Just Vista SP2.

I am not calling for Apple to release Snow Leopard for all PCs. But it wouldn’t matter, they are going to do it. It is time. All this work, all these years. The time is coming soon. You thought the transition to Intel was freaky. You ain’t seen nothing yet. If Apple had Snow Leopard optimized, it would run far, far better on a typical XP machine than anything Microsoft could come out with in a million years. And the hardware is so good now, it will continue to outsell all the PC garbage. It is a different era than the last time they allowed cloning. Apple is about to take the entire computer market. Watch it, and forget I even told you. This is also why they are focusing on software, it’s going to be a major focus when Snow Leopard ships, because there will be some version for the garden variety generic PC with the poky BIOS, etc… It won’t be as good as an Apple Mac, but it will obliterate Windows once and for all.

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Doug Grinbergs February 12, 2009 at 2358

Oh, how I wish they’d make a special area for one-on-one training, rather than have it smack dab in the middle of the hustle and bustle of a busy retail store -people trying out iPod boom boxes, noisy kids, etc. – hardly conducive for quality learning time. If not separate space, at least a hefty dose of acoustic isolation seems in order. For a company that prides itself on user experience, this seems quite the oversight for Apple.

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John Clayton Caris February 13, 2009 at 1507

Right ON! And they sure need to really focus on 3rd Party Software like RapidWeaver, FotoMagico plus a myriad of others. Then they need to beef up their Training and 1-to-1 experts on those 3rd party softwares rather than just the Pure Apple Softwares.

The stores are now weak on Training except the Pure Apple stuff. I have found a copuple of Apple traineers who want to go beyond the ordinary line of training to assist me on such apps as RapidWeaver and Plugins and Filemaker Pro , etc.

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Jerry Willis March 5, 2009 at 1337

Apple store are almost becoming a surreal experience. Shopping online is no where near as fun but these guys helped. http://www.merchantprocessingaccounts.com/retail_credit_card_processing.html

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