Retail

Apple may have removed limitations on its price matching program

Apple has a lesser-known program which lets would-be buyers get some of its latest products at a discount. The Cupertino firm used to match up to ten percent off a product’s original list price from authorized retailers, under certain conditions, but that ceiling is reportedly no longer in effect, as per an Apple store employee on Reddit.

Steve Jobs originally thought Genius Bar would never work

When Apple’s former retail chief Ron Johnson presented the idea for tech support stations—dubbed Genius Bar—that would be located inside the company’s brick-and-mortar stores, Steve Jobs loathed the concept and thought it would never work.

“I remember the day I came in and told Steve about the Genius Bar idea and he says, ‘That’s so idiotic! It’ll never work!’”, Johnson told Recode.

Apple Watch popup store in Paris shuts down

From the onset, Apple was pushing Apple Watch as a fashion device and set up popup stores in high-profile department stores like Galeries Lafayette in Paris, Selfridges in London and Isetan in Tokyo. With the second-generation Apple Watch, fashion was de-emphasized in favor of the fitness and health aspects of the device.

As a result, Apple began shuttering these stores-within-stores which mostly promoted Apple Watch Edition models anyway. After closing the popup shop in London, the Parisian one has now closed due to poor sales. The Galeries Lafayette outlet is no longer listed on Apple’s Retail website in France.

Apple planning to open first retail store on Samsung’s home turf

Apple is planning to open a retail store in Seoul, South Korea, reports Reuters. This will be the company’s first official store in the country, which also plays home to the headquarters of Samsung, Apple’s largest competitor in the smartphone space.

A spokesperson for Apple confirmed the plans with Reuters via email, saying “We’re excited about opening our first Apple Store in Korea, one of the world’s economic centers and a leader in telecommunication and technology, with a vibrant K-culture.”

Apple starts accepting orders for LG’s 27″ UltraFine 5K Display, ships in 2-4 weeks

LG’s UltraFine 5K Display, the external ultra high-resolution display Apple didn’t want to make, is now available to order through Apple.com. The display can be ordered with Apple’s in-store pickup option (availability of in-store pickup may vary from one store to another). First orders were scheduled to deliver on December 27 or 28, with in-store pickup availability on December 29. However, estimated delivery times quickly slipped to 2-4 weeks.

Apple now offering in-store pickup for AirPods with February 8 availability

As first noted by AppleInsider, Apple yesterday began offering the in-store pickup option for its newly launched AirPods wireless earphones. Apple.com online store in the United States indicated at post time that first AirPods ordered with the in-store pickup option would be available on February 8.

If you choose to have AirPods shipped to your home, they’re estimated to arrive in six weeks.

Apple gives employees t-shirt and credo print for the holidays

Apple this year is giving each of its retail employees a special edition t-shirt and credo printing gift for the holidays. MacRumors has photos of the presents, which show a gray t-shirt featuring a two-circle design made up of all of Apple’s retail locations.

As for the credo, it’s printed on what appears to be glossy, heavy paper and it even comes in a protective envelop. Apple introduced the 6-paragraph statement earlier this year, which starts off “we are here to enrich lives, to help dreamers become doers.”

Amazon’s new grocery store uses artificial intelligence and sensors to eliminate checkout

Online retail giant Amazon is testing a new type of brick-and-mortar convenience store where you simply walk in, pick up your items and walk out, no clerk or a cash register required whatsoever because everything you’ve put in the shopping basket is automatically charged to your Prime account as soon as you leave the store. Located at 2131 7th Ave in Seattle, the futuristic grocery store, dubbed Amazon Go, has been four years in the making.

The system uses computer vision, sensor fusion and deep learning to detect when goods are removed and returned to the shelves. Amazon’s retail store of the future that eliminates checkout is launching in early-2017.