Apple Retail stores will look very different in the US when they reopen

Posted:
in General Discussion edited May 2020
Apple's upcoming reopening of some U.S.-based retail locations will be based around guidelines that the company developed for and refined at its open South Korea Apple Store.

Apple Stores will look quite different due to coronavirus, with tweaked product displays and new social distancing guidelines.
Apple Stores like this one, pre-coronavirus will look quite different when they reopen, with tweaked product displays and new social distancing guidelines.


The Cupertino tech giant on Friday announced that they would cautiously kick its retail reopening process with select U.S. stores in Idaho, South Carolina, Alabama and Alaska the week of May 11. In mid-April, Apple reopened its sole brick-and-mortar location in South Korea.

Using that location as a testing ground, the company has reportedly developed an instructional video with coronavirus and social distancing guideline that it's now sending to other retail employees. That video, obtained by MacRumors, outlines a set of strict practices that Apple Store staffers will be required to follow to ensure reopening is done safely.

Precautions include temperature checking both employees and customers, holding socially distanced daily briefings for staffers, and providing and encouraging the use of hand sanitizer by customers. Apple Stores will also be instructed to limit the number of people allowed inside of them, forming lines with shoppers at least two meters apart.

Guidelines also extend to how products are displayed, with fewer products per table positioned in a way to keep customers from standing too closely to each other.

Apple Store staffers themselves will also take precautions, including limiting movement by communicating through the Talk app, working at alternating workstations, and wearing face masks at all times.

Employees will also use a "relay system" to get products and repaired devices from a stockroom to customers without too much employee movement. The backrooms at Apple locations will also see most of their communal areas rearranged to encourage social distancing.

Stores that reopen will operate with reduced hours at first, though it isn't clear what the new schedule will be.

Apple Stores have been shuttered across the globe -- except for those in China -- since March 14. In an internal memo from March, Apple's chief of retail and people Deirdre O'Brien said that the company would evaluate whether to reopen offices and stores on a city-by-city basis, evaluating local guidelines before proceeding.
ronn
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 91
    wizard69wizard69 Posts: 13,377member
    Very interesting but I have two issues. 

    First what happens to customers that normally run temperatures above “normal”.   Frankly I really doubt there will be a lot of public tolerance to having their temperature taken.  

    Second does social distancing really accomplished anything if people are wearing masks?   I’ve been wondering about this a lot lately.  I don’t mean actual touching here but rather the stupidity of the 6 foot rule.  
    georgie01razorpit
  • Reply 2 of 91
    avon b7avon b7 Posts: 5,901member
    Apple is fortunate to have large stores where they can better manage social distancing and route people around the interiors. 

    I don't know if many of you have seen that video which seems to have gone viral of a Asian kid at the gate to the school passing through different stages of disinfection. No idea if it is fake or not but obviously people are getting pro-active with regards to hygiene and protection and creative into the bargain. 
  • Reply 3 of 91
    AppleZuluAppleZulu Posts: 1,198member
    wizard69 said:
    Very interesting but I have two issues. 

    First what happens to customers that normally run temperatures above “normal”.   Frankly I really doubt there will be a lot of public tolerance to having their temperature taken.  

    Second does social distancing really accomplished anything if people are wearing masks?   I’ve been wondering about this a lot lately.  I don’t mean actual touching here but rather the stupidity of the 6 foot rule.  
    It’s a probability calculation, and yes distances still affect the formula. This isn’t an an/off switch. 
    randominternetpersonpscooter63Bart Ylolliver
  • Reply 4 of 91
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 11,574member
    wizard69 said:
    Very interesting but I have two issues. 

    First what happens to customers that normally run temperatures above “normal”.   Frankly I really doubt there will be a lot of public tolerance to having their temperature taken.  

    Second does social distancing really accomplished anything if people are wearing masks?   I’ve been wondering about this a lot lately.  I don’t mean actual touching here but rather the stupidity of the 6 foot rule.  
    Not many people run over 100.4. Fringe case at best. 

    I gladly had my temp taken at the dentist and didn’t think twice about it. Being safe and courteous to others is my duty. 

    The 6’ rule isn’t stupid. Actual testing has shown it’s a minimum, as cough droplets easily travel to 9 and even 12’ with no mask. With is reduced but it all depends on the mask. 6’ seems reasonable at a min. 

    https://www.cnn.com/videos/health/2020/05/04/cough-coronavirus-masks-kaye-pkg-vpx.cnn
    iqatedo[Deleted User]GeorgeBMacBart Ytommikelelolliver
  • Reply 5 of 91
    DAalsethDAalseth Posts: 1,725member
    I suspect all retailing will look very different. Especially after this has continued, albeit at a less intense level, for a couple of years. People will have gotten used to ordering things online be default. Before this started malls and department stores were in a major slump. This is going to accelerate it dramatically. I’d give even odds that Apple gets out of the brick and mortar store business within five or so years. Would not surprise me at all. 
  • Reply 6 of 91
    Precautions include temperature checking both employees and customers, holding socially distanced daily briefings for staffers, and providing and encouraging the use of hand sanitizer by customers. Apple Stores will also be instructed to limit the number of people allowed inside of them, forming lines with shoppers at least two meters apart.

    I'm not sure Americans can stand 2 meters apart.  All the confusing metric stuff and all.  Hopefully they'll translate that into English for us.

    "Please stand 6.6 feet apart."  But then people will complain about those extra 6.75"  /s
    svanstromGeorgeBMacBart Y
  • Reply 7 of 91
    wizard69 said:
    Very interesting but I have two issues. 

    First what happens to customers that normally run temperatures above “normal”.   Frankly I really doubt there will be a lot of public tolerance to having their temperature taken.  

    Second does social distancing really accomplished anything if people are wearing masks?   I’ve been wondering about this a lot lately.  I don’t mean actual touching here but rather the stupidity of the 6 foot rule.  
    Not many people run over 100.4. Fringe case at best. 

    I gladly had my temp taken at the dentist and didn’t think twice about it. Being safe and courteous to others is my duty. 

    The 6’ rule isn’t stupid. Actual testing has shown it’s a minimum, as cough droplets easily travel to 9 and even 12’ with no mask. With is reduced but it all depends on the mask. 6’ seems reasonable at a min. 

    https://www.cnn.com/videos/health/2020/05/04/cough-coronavirus-masks-kaye-pkg-vpx.cnn
    Wizard69 was specifically asking about requiring distance when everyone is already wearing a mask.  I assume that the answer is that masks (especially the non-N95 masks we're all making do with) are far from fool proof.  As someone else said it all about probabilities.  Wearing a mask reduces the risk of transmission; standing 6 feet apart reduces the risk; etc.
    pscooter63Bart Y
  • Reply 8 of 91
    iOS_Guy80iOS_Guy80 Posts: 527member
    wizard69 said:
    Very interesting but I have two issues. 

    First what happens to customers that normally run temperatures above “normal”.   Frankly I really doubt there will be a lot of public tolerance to having their temperature taken.  

    Second does social distancing really accomplished anything if people are wearing masks?   I’ve been wondering about this a lot lately.  I don’t mean actual touching here but rather the stupidity of the 6 foot rule.  
    Get use to it and not just in an Apple Store. It beats the alternative.
    GeorgeBMacBart Y
  • Reply 9 of 91
    dewmedewme Posts: 3,821member
    I’m going with the assumption that homemade and non-N95 masks provide no protection at all for the wearer. These masks are simply to keep your potentially virus laden spray from dosing others around you. 

    You should therefore assume that everyone around you within the spew radius of 6 ft and not wearing a mask does not give a rip about your continued existence on earth. That’s the bottom line, non sugar coated reality here, so proceed with caution and at your own risk. 

    Of course it works the other way too. If you walk into a public venue without a mask on you are basically advertising that you don’t value anyone else’s life - for whatever selfish reason you want to embrace. 

    Until there’s a vaccine- it really is that simple. 
    GeorgeBMacpumpkin_kingronnBart Y
  • Reply 10 of 91
    cjk91108cjk91108 Posts: 8member
    iOS_Guy80 said:
    wizard69 said:
    Very interesting but I have two issues. 

    Get use to it and not just in an Apple Store. It beats the alternative.
    What is the alternative you have in mind? Almost all models show that by the end of this about 70%+ of the population will have had the virus.

    also

    There are specific reasons that businesses are doing this and it goes well beyond just the protection of the employees and guests.  

    georgie01razorpit
  • Reply 11 of 91
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 9,233member
    wizard69 said:
    Very interesting but I have two issues. 

    First what happens to customers that normally run temperatures above “normal”.   Frankly I really doubt there will be a lot of public tolerance to having their temperature taken.  

    Second does social distancing really accomplished anything if people are wearing masks?   I’ve been wondering about this a lot lately.  I don’t mean actual touching here but rather the stupidity of the 6 foot rule.  
    Temperatures above normal qualifies as sick in my opinion.

    I don't have any issues with these measures. I'm all for the stores opening up as quickly as possible. If that means increased measures, then so be it. I've been calling for society to open up as soon as possible for a while now.

    It's not like they're sticking a thermometer up anybody's ass. They're probably using a laser gun thermometer directed at the forehead to quickly check the temps of people entering the store. Measures like this have been commonplace many places worldwide. I've seen many images of people getting their temp taken before they are allowed to enter somewhere.

    If somebody doesn't like it or objects, then they should be considered infected and not allowed to enter under any circumstances.

    Apple should also have armed security ready to shoot any violators who get violent or threatening, as we've seen in some other businesses.
    edited May 2020 GeorgeBMacSpamSandwichBart Y
  • Reply 12 of 91
    seanismorrisseanismorris Posts: 1,624member
    wizard69 said:
    Very interesting but I have two issues. 

    First what happens to customers that normally run temperatures above “normal”.   Frankly I really doubt there will be a lot of public tolerance to having their temperature taken.  

    Second does social distancing really accomplished anything if people are wearing masks?   I’ve been wondering about this a lot lately.  I don’t mean actual touching here but rather the stupidity of the 6 foot rule.  
    Not many people run over 100.4. Fringe case at best. 

    I gladly had my temp taken at the dentist and didn’t think twice about it. Being safe and courteous to others is my duty. 

    The 6’ rule isn’t stupid. Actual testing has shown it’s a minimum, as cough droplets easily travel to 9 and even 12’ with no mask. With is reduced but it all depends on the mask. 6’ seems reasonable at a min. 

    https://www.cnn.com/videos/health/2020/05/04/cough-coronavirus-masks-kaye-pkg-vpx.cnn
    Wizard69 was specifically asking about requiring distance when everyone is already wearing a mask.  I assume that the answer is that masks (especially the non-N95 masks we're all making do with) are far from fool proof.  As someone else said it all about probabilities.  Wearing a mask reduces the risk of transmission; standing 6 feet apart reduces the risk; etc.
    I suspect it’s more about making people “feel” safer than actually be safer.  All the homemade masks make me laugh.  All the times that people touch them...to straighten them, is more likely for them to get contaminated (and the wearer infected) than going without.

    Here’s what they were saying a few weeks ago.  I suspect this is accurate.
    https://www.cpr.org/2020/02/28/colorado-is-sold-out-of-medical-masks-due-to-coronavirus-fears-dont-worry-you-dont-need-one/
     I think almost everyone I've seen outside of the hospital, that's wearing these in public, don't even have them on properly," said Barron. "I think ends up happening is that it gives them a false sense of security and then they don't realize that their hands are far more likely to be the way they're going to catch this."
    razorpit
  • Reply 13 of 91
    22july201322july2013 Posts: 2,512member
    My local grocery store (not to mention local drive-thrus) has made significant changes at the checkout counter. I like the changes. In fact, I hope most of these changes are permanent, even when COVID is no longer a threat. There is even a change to how Apple Pay works in Canada. The limit for purchasing has gone up to $250 per purchase when using credit cards. This is a direct consequence of COVID. Finally, $250. Although my average grocery bill usually runs $275 so I'm going to have to purchase less food every two weeks to be able to use Apple Pay without a credit card PIN.
    edited May 2020 Bart Ylolliver
  • Reply 14 of 91
    rcomeaurcomeau Posts: 57member
    wizard69 said:
    Very interesting but I have two issues. 

    First what happens to customers that normally run temperatures above “normal”.   Frankly I really doubt there will be a lot of public tolerance to having their temperature taken.  

    Second does social distancing really accomplished anything if people are wearing masks?   I’ve been wondering about this a lot lately.  I don’t mean actual touching here but rather the stupidity of the 6 foot rule.  
    It's called redundancy. Distancing is the first line of defence and the mask is the second. Given all that is going on and the cost socially and economically in dragging this on with half-hearted, half-baked measures, wearing a simple mask is not too much to ask.
    dewmerandominternetpersonBart Ylolliver
  • Reply 15 of 91
    rcomeaurcomeau Posts: 57member
    My local grocery store (not to mention local drive-thrus) has made significant changes at the checkout counter. I like the changes. In fact, I hope most of these changes are permanent, even when COVID is no longer a threat. There is even a change to how Apple Pay works in Canada. The limit for purchasing has gone up to $250 per purchase when using credit cards. This is a direct consequence of COVID. Finally, $250. Although my average grocery bill usually runs $275 so I'm going to have to purchase less food every two weeks to be able to use Apple Pay without a credit card PIN.
    Every 2 weeks? You must either freeze your bread, or enjoy it pretty stale! 

    I found an interesting issue with the watch. I started using the Apple watch as it does not require face ID (funny how I need it for the phone, but not the watch). In many cases where they put in the clear plexiglass shield, I can't get my wrist close enough to the tap censor because of the plexiglass. One day we'll figure it out...
  • Reply 16 of 91
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 9,233member
    My local grocery store (not to mention local drive-thrus) has made significant changes at the checkout counter. I like the changes. In fact, I hope most of these changes are permanent, even when COVID is no longer a threat. There is even a change to how Apple Pay works in Canada. The limit for purchasing has gone up to $250 per purchase when using credit cards. This is a direct consequence of COVID. Finally, $250. Although my average grocery bill usually runs $275 so I'm going to have to purchase less food every two weeks to be able to use Apple Pay without a credit card PIN.
    My average grocery bill is around $40.

    I don't just go 2 times a month though. I'd say that you are in the extreme minority.
  • Reply 17 of 91
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 9,233member
    rcomeau said:
     I started using the Apple watch as it does not require face ID (funny how I need it for the phone, but not the watch). In many cases where they put in the clear plexiglass shield, I can't get my wrist close enough to the tap censor because of the plexiglass. One day we'll figure it out...
    Yes, last time I was at Costco, I had a small problem using the Apple Watch because of the plexiglass with the card reader behind the plexiglass.

    After trying a few times, I eventually managed to get my wrist below the plexiglass and close enough to the reader to make it work. Somebody with fat arms would have run into problems with that I think.

    The cashier first suggested that I remove my watch, but I told them that I didn't think that was going to work. :#
    edited May 2020
  • Reply 18 of 91
    zoetmbzoetmb Posts: 2,586member
    My local grocery store (not to mention local drive-thrus) has made significant changes at the checkout counter. I like the changes. In fact, I hope most of these changes are permanent, even when COVID is no longer a threat. There is even a change to how Apple Pay works in Canada. The limit for purchasing has gone up to $250 per purchase when using credit cards. This is a direct consequence of COVID. Finally, $250. Although my average grocery bill usually runs $275 so I'm going to have to purchase less food every two weeks to be able to use Apple Pay without a credit card PIN.
    The credit limit on my Apple Pay is $10,000 and I'm not aware of any other limitations.   On Apple Pay charged to my Apple Card, I know I've had $500 single purchases.   I don't think there's any limitation per purchase when using other credit cards via Apple Pay other than the credit limit and if a purchase was rejected, I'm sure a quick call to the credit card company, which you can dial directly from the wallet app, would enable the purchase to go through.   Maybe it's different in Canada.

    GeorgeBMac
  • Reply 19 of 91
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 9,233member
    zoetmb said:
     Maybe it's different in Canada.
    Yes, that's the reason.
    edited May 2020
  • Reply 20 of 91
    zoetmbzoetmb Posts: 2,586member
    IMO, the bigger issue in an Apple Store and other similar retail environments is that everyone is touching everything.   I'd be very wary of touching devices in the store while the virus is still raging.   I know they'll probably clean everything several times a day, but I doubt they'll clean every device after every touch.  


    ronn
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