Confirming our exclusive report last week that Apple Stores were scheduling meetings with all retail staff in late May, we’re now hearing reports that all Apple Stores in the United States will hold all-hands meetings for the morning of Sunday, May 22nd. And given the preparations and secrecy, something big seems like it’s about to shakedown in celebration of Apple’s ten year retail anniversary.
• “There’s an overnight shift planned for around 10-15 individuals at each Apple Store to work from late Saturday all the way through mid-Sunday.”
• “During the overnight shift, it’s going to be required that employees lock cell phones in the main office. They will also have to sign an NDA with Apple.”
• “There are a wide variety of roles, we’re told, for the overnight shift. This includes all visuals staff, a manager, a business team member, a few Genius team members, one back-of-house employee, and a few generic Apple specialists.”
• “Apple stores have apparently already received hardware to install, and are expecting more hardware to come on Friday or Saturday. All materials that Apple stores have received have been instructed to be under lock and key until after close on Saturday night.”
• “Apple employees will be putting up black curtains at all stores so that people walking outside cannot see inside.”
• “Employees have had to download gigabytes of data from Apple corporate labeled, “training” in a password-protected zipped folder that won’t accessible to managers or anyone else until Saturday afternoon.”
• “Lastly, all Apple retail stores have mandatory meetings on Sunday, May 22nd. Most meeting are scheduled for the morning, but there are evening meetings as well.”
Apple’s 10th retail anniversary is technically on Thursday, May 19th, but it seems as if Apple intends to celebrate it on Sunday, May 22nd instead, maximizing publicity and attendance. This would also explain why the all-hands meeting is scheduled before work on Sunday, as opposed to after-hours Sunday, as is traditional.
Either way, whatever these Apple Store employees are prepping for, it’s pretty clear that Apple’s kept the details of this event pretty close to their chest up until now. This is the first we’ve heard of it. It has to be something huge, though.
What could May 22nd hold in store for us? A new product? New hardware? Or just a day of discounted products and free goodie bags at all their Retail Stores? No matter what it is, it sounds like Apple Store customers as well as employees should mark the date.