Apple Spotlights iPod Touch With In-Store Applications

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Apple’s iPod touch will play an even greater role within the Cupertino, Calif. company’s chain of retail stores. Along with dumping Pocket PC-based checkouts, the touch will now be seen more in the hands of employees working on the floor and in the stockroom, a report said Thursday.

The increased exposure comes as Apple readies distribution of three exclusive iPod touch applications designed to make life easier for Apple Store employees during the expected hectic holiday season, according to AppleInsider. One application will allow any employees to exchange iPhones or iPod while on the store floor, rather than only at a Genius Bar tech support area.

Another Apple Store-only application will speed-up operations in stock rooms. Although no time was specified, the AI report quotes an unnamed source saying the applications will be introduced “very soon” in all Apple Stores. All apps will be distributed together. The software will be bundled with a central “Easy Touch” application combining the three apps with a magnetic stripe reader and advanced barcode scanner allowing the iPod touch to more quickly process credit card and debit transactions, the report said.

The changes seem to stem from Apple’s introduction of the iPhone 3.0 software that lets hardware, such as barcode scanners or magnetic stripe readers, be attached to an iPhone or iPod touch.

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Ed SutherlandEd Sutherland is a veteran technology journalist who first heard of Apple when they grew on trees, Yahoo was run out of a Stanford dorm and Google was an unknown upstart. Since then, Sutherland has covered the whole technology landscape, concentrating on tracking the trends and figuring out the finances of large (and small) technology companies.

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