Is Apple Planning a Major Product Launch for Its Retail Stores 10th Anniversary?

Apple Retail stores were initially met with some criticism. A lot of skeptics didn’t think that Apple would sell enough products to turn enough profit to cover the expensive property taxes on posh locations like the Fifth Avenue store.

However, several years and locations later, the stores continue to be a success. The retail chain devoted specifically to selling and educating folks on Apple products is coming up on its 10th anniversary and BGR is claiming they’ve heard Apple’s planning something huge…

The popular gadget blog, known for breaking exclusive tech news, is reporting that Apple is planning a major launch for May 19th, which happens to be the retail’s 10th year anniversary.

We actually heard rumors earlier this year surrounding the retail chain’s big event, several sites reported that Apple retail employees were told not to take vacation during dates surrounding the 10th year celebration. However, those rumors were dismissed as nothing more than training dates.

From what BGR is saying, this is far more than employee training. Here is a summary of what their source told them:

1. There’s an overnight shift planned for 10-15 individuals at each Apple Store to work from Saturday through Sunday.

2. It’s going to be required that employees lock their cell phones in the office and workers will be required to sign an NDA.

3. Apple Stores have apparently already received hardware to install, and are expecting more hardware to come on Friday or Saturday. All materials are to remain under lock and key until after close on Saturday night.

4. Apple employees will be putting up black curtains at all stores overnight so that people walking by cannot see in.

5. Employees have had to download gigabytes of data from Apple corporate labeled, “training” in a password-protected zipped folder that won’t be accessible until Saturday.

There are more items on the list, but these were the ones that really stood out. Is Apple planning something huge for this weekend? The BGR article is by Boy Genius founder Jonathan Geller who says the information comes from a trusted Apple source.

The site has recently shared leaked photos of the white iPhone mysteriously running on T-Mobile’s network, as well as exclusive news on multiple iOS updates, so needless to say they’ve got some credibility.

While this could end up just being a store refresh (it’s typical in retail to change product placement and advertising material), we thought it was certainly interesting enough to share.

What could Apple be planning? iPhone 4S already?