Major physical changes could be coming to Apple stores as Angela Ahrendts era is in full swing

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  • Reply 41 of 132
    bdkennedy1bdkennedy1 Posts: 1,459member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by FreeRange View Post



    Why would you want seating. Part of the Apple Store experience is the energy, and browsing the different areas and products even while waiting for the Genius Bar. Not sitting around on your butt. We do enough of that already.

     

    Because many people that may have a medical problem may not enjoy standing around for an hour waiting for their iPhone or whatever to get fixed.

  • Reply 42 of 132
    pfisherpfisher Posts: 758member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post



    So adding seating areas equates to major physical changes?



    I don't mind if she's ruffling feathers. Apple stores are very successful and profitable but in some respects are kind of stale. They haven't changed much since Ron Johnson was running the show.

     

    Apple Stores seem fine to me and I've been to a dozen of them. Lately, they have been changing the processes about pickups and returns, which was really good. Maybe it was a Christmas thing. For instance, if you bought online to pick up in store, there was a pickup area. And it took 2 seconds. Then there was an area for setup of your phone or whatever, if that is what you wanted. I did recently do a trade-in of an iPhone 6 for a 6+ and it literally took about 3 minutes to do the whole transaction. It was very pleasant and very efficient.

     

    I don't see why its necessary to fix what is not broken.

     

    I do like (for me) that they have reduce shelf space, it seems, for accessories. The stores have less clutter.

     

    Other than make the stores larger...or put more phones and iPads on display at one table...

     

    Change for change's sake? New executive in town, got to make some changes. This happens all of the time in corporate America. The pendulum swings this way, then that way. Are we going to credit these high-level executives with brilliance? With swinging a wand and making things all wonderful due to their genius?



    Skeptical. See how Ron Johnson affected JC Penny?

     

    Heck, Apple could just take over some Radio Shack stores. Not all of them, but a few here and there.

  • Reply 43 of 132
    This smacks of a new hotshot executive wanting to make her mark by shaking up things, mostly just for the sake of doing it. I have to ask myself just what is so broken about Apple Stores now that requires radical changes? Adding seating and projecting an image of luxury sound like bad ideas for the Apple Store experience.

    It almost sounds like she wants to turn Apple Stores into some kind of boutique where customers can sit and discuss accessorizing with Apple products with salespeople over a cup of herb tea. I predict a major fail and that she will be handed her golden parachute and shoved out the hatch inside of two years.
  • Reply 44 of 132
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SolipsismY View Post



    How does ?Watch fit into this? Should they showcase these $350 to a rumoured $5,000+ watches like they do the iPod Nano or iPhone cases, or do they need something that works specifically with that product?

     

    It is also important to keep in mind that you don't wear an iPod or iPhone.

    People will want to try on the ?Watch and try different band combinations before purchasing.

  • Reply 45 of 132
    eightzeroeightzero Posts: 2,926member

    OOohh...I know, I know! Two words: Drive. Through.

  • Reply 46 of 132
    solipsismysolipsismy Posts: 5,099member
    popnfresh wrote: »
    ...projecting an image of luxury sound like bad ideas for the Apple brand.

    So ?Watch was her idea years ago? :\ I think it's clear this is needed for the future of Apple if they want ?Watch to succeed. Even though I think most ?Watch models will eventually be sold though pretty much every other vendor that sells watches — think Sports Authority to Macys to Zales —  their stores simply aren't equipped for that type of product line. We're talking about 40 SKUs out of the gate with a huge range of prices and use of precious medals making the product easily concealable, unlike a $2,500 5K iMac, that will likely the user may literally want to try on before purchase.
  • Reply 47 of 132
    MacProMacPro Posts: 19,649member
    jeffarino wrote: »
    "She's ruffling some feathers, but the stores need some changes. It can get noisy and hectic in the stores at times."

    I note that it is never "noisy or hectic" in any Microsoft Store. :)

    Monks use them for meditation.
  • Reply 48 of 132
    solipsismysolipsismy Posts: 5,099member
    People will want to try on the ?Watch and try different band combinations before purchasing.

    Speaking of that, if they display them like they do all other tech, they will need separate security cables for each band since those are removable.
  • Reply 49 of 132

    I found the perfect seating for the Apple Store...

    "Please sit here while you wait for your Genius bar appointment."
  • Reply 50 of 132
    solipsismy wrote: »
    So ?Watch was her idea years ago? :\ I think it's clear this is needed for the future of Apple if they want ?Watch to succeed. Even though I think most ?Watch models will eventually be sold though pretty much every other vendor that sells watches — think Sports Authority to Macys to Zales —  their stores simply aren't equipped for that type of product line. We're talking about 40 SKUs out of the gate with a huge range of prices and use of precious medals making the product easily concealable, unlike a $2,500 5K iMac, that will likely the user may literally want to try on before purchase.

    What percentage of Apple's profits will come from the watch vs the iPhone and other current type products? Watches will be a tiny fraction so why change all the stores for the minor product line. Make a new area to display them and leave the rest alone or a few tweaks not lounge areas
  • Reply 51 of 132
    mike1mike1 Posts: 3,212member

    My biggest gripe is the inability to walk in the store take an accessory off the shelf and bring it somewhere to pay for it. At Christmastime, I wanted to buy a case and a gift card and the ordeal was painful! There were employees everywhere, bt nobody to ring up a sale. It shouldn't be that hard to buy something. Quite the opposite experience of when I make an appointment to utilize the genius bar. That process is pretty painless.

  • Reply 52 of 132
    sflocalsflocal Posts: 6,057member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Maestro64 View Post



    I can not remember which Apple store I was in, but one of them had threater style seating in the back and they use do demos and product training there as well as the Genius was set up as a real bar with bar stools verse what I see to day with the tables in the back. I think that is much better than what they have today.



    The San Francisco flagship store near Union Square had the theater seating and had classes on everything.  There were many times I would walk up there looking for something, then be captivated at whatever subject they were teaching.  It was great, and the seats were always taken with eager folks and their MacBooks listening to every word that was spoken.  I miss that.  It was really unique to Apple.  I think they should bring that back.  For people new to OSX and the apps, it was part of the halo-effect as far as I was concerned.

  • Reply 53 of 132
    solipsismysolipsismy Posts: 5,099member
    captain j wrote: »
    What percentage of Apple's profits will come from the watch vs the iPhone and other current type products? Watches will be a tiny fraction so why change all the stores for the minor product line.

    Perhaps, but I imagine the same arguments would have been made if she had come in back in 2007. Frankly we don't know what Apple has planned for the future, but Ive has ?Watch is the direction he thinks Apple will be moving, if I remember his comment correctly.
    Make a new area to display them and leave the rest alone or a few tweaks not lounge areas

    Remember when a good part of the Apple Store was for software? I remember when people were upset when Apple started removing it. I remember saying how digital downloads were the future and getting a lot of comments about how running off a CD was still the best way for this or that. Things change, but at least this time ?Watch clues us in as to why some things require change.
  • Reply 54 of 132
    sflocalsflocal Posts: 6,057member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by mike1 View Post

     

    My biggest gripe is the inability to walk in the store take an accessory off the shelf and bring it somewhere to pay for it. At Christmastime, I wanted to buy a case and a gift card and the ordeal was painful! There were employees everywhere, bt nobody to ring up a sale. It shouldn't be that hard to buy something. Quite the opposite experience of when I make an appointment to utilize the genius bar. That process is pretty painless.




    Why painful?  All the Apple stores I walk into no longer have a formal cash-register area.  Every Apple employee standing around can ring up a sale.  I just walk up to anyone standing around and they are always there ready to go. 



    Yeah, I do see a lot of them just standing around at times, but they are approachable and always helpful.

  • Reply 55 of 132
    solipsismysolipsismy Posts: 5,099member
    mike1 wrote: »
    My biggest gripe is the inability to walk in the store take an accessory off the shelf and bring it somewhere to pay for it. At Christmastime, I wanted to buy a case and a gift card and the ordeal was painful! There were employees everywhere, bt nobody to ring up a sale. It shouldn't be that hard to buy something. Quite the opposite experience of when I make an appointment to utilize the genius bar. That process is pretty painless.

    I find that to be the least painless sales process of all. Just scan in their Apple Store app and leave. No need to even make eye contact with anyone.
  • Reply 56 of 132
    jkichlinejkichline Posts: 1,367member

    I think she may be right. Something is going to need to change in Apple stores and soon.  Take a look at the product mix and the trend towards wearables.  I think you're going to see the store divide into two areas. The first is going to be similar to what we have now with laptops and iMacs on display. Things like iPods may even be relegated to a shelf space since they are not big movers.  That's where you will have your Genius bar and standard Apple Store flair.  You won't see much different except to remove lesser selling products like iPod and accessories.  I'm not sure why the Apple store sells most of that stuff and it could be handled by backroom stock and some well-placed iPads.

     

    The more "personal" technology is going to move into a more intimate setting, more like an Apple inner sanctum. You go in and it's quiet and relaxed. You sit down and employees provide you with attention to detail.  Try on some Apple Watches, listen to music on Beats headphones.  Basically providing a luxury experience to ordinary people.  That is where the high-priced items will be available if you want them.  For all other folks, you have the high energy Apple store.

     

    Doing this will actually make the Apple Watch an even more desired items as the concierges shuffle you into the "club" to pick our your watch or other luxury wearable technology.

  • Reply 57 of 132

    To me, the Apple Stores seem cold and sterile. The noise at the Downtown Palo Alto Store is downright obnoxious probably due to an over-fixation on glass and concrete. Apple is obviously going to need to make some changes, when they introduce their watch, but other changes are probably long overdue. It will be interesting to see what Angela Ahrendts brings to the table. I have never shopped at Burberry, so I have no idea of what sensibilities she brings to the retail experience.

  • Reply 58 of 132
    moreckmoreck Posts: 187member
    While she's at it, change the name "Genius Bar" to something less condescending, and add signs or something to make the stores easier to navigate. It's not intuitive that customers would just magically know to seek out the employee in the middle of the crowd to check in.
  • Reply 59 of 132
    wizard69wizard69 Posts: 13,377member
    cali wrote: »
    Will losing Bridger over Ahrendts be worth it?

    In a nut shell yes.

    Apple has spent way to much money on fancy flag ship stores and have left the rest in a poor state. They need to consider upsizing many of their stores. Right now the local store is often standing room only which sucks, some of these changes couldn't happen in that store at all. So yeah it would be good to see the focus placed back on expansion outside of flagship venues.
  • Reply 60 of 132
    zoetmbzoetmb Posts: 2,645member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by macinthe408 View Post



    I've always why there isn't a lounge area in Apple Stores. I would love to go in and telecommute at an Apple Store. Of course, there'd need to be an Apple-designed espresso machine available...

    And that's why there isn't a lounge area and maybe shouldn't be.   An Apple Store isn't your office.   If you make it so and  you're using the machines, then someone who wants to demo a machine for the purpose of actually buying one is going to have to wait.

     

    If you're just using the store for WiFi, there's plenty of other places to do that.

     

    If Apple wants to setup the equivalent of the computer/printer section of FedEx Office (Kinko's), that would be fine in the larger stores. 

     

    One of the things that really bugs me about Barnes & Noble is people laying on the floor with a pile of books and magazines.   They take up a lot of space and block the aisles and they turn the products into "used" merchandise.   It's one thing to make people feel welcome - it's quite another to make a complete nuisance of yourself.   Not that I have the need to go to an Apple store all that often, but I would hate for the Apple stores to turn into a place where people with nothing better to do seat themselves there all day.

     

    In general, I think the Apple stores could use some updating.  When it comes down to it, what are they?   Parsons tables with working computers, concrete floors and glass display panels some walls and depending on the store, stone treatment on other walls.    The stand-alone stores with the high ceilings and floor to ceiling glass exterior walls look great, but they're terribly noisy inside.  I remember not being able to test Siri because of the noise. 

     

    But having said that, I think there's a possibility that Ahrendts is more concerned with putting her own imprint on the stores than with changes that would substantively improve the environment.   No facts to back that up - just reacting to the people leaving in her wake.   Rather than changing the physical makeup of the stores, I'd rather see them improve the efficiency and quality of the Genius Bar.   Maybe it should be split into two different sections:  one for help and one for repairs.   And maybe more resources should be devoted to on-site, quick turnaround repairs.     Apple created a lot of these problems by making batteries and memory non-user replaceable in most devices.   They need to have the resources to make up for that. 

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