Apple made a conscious and important choice about sales commissions and customer experience
Over the weekend, The NY Times posted another investigative piece in its iEconomy series that about Apple. This installment focused on Apple’s retail stores. As with previous articles in the series, this one focuses on legitimate concerns about the American economy in an age of globalization. Like the other pieces, this one targets Apple specifically and ignores the range of Apple competitors that employ similar practices.
The primary issue that the Times brings up with regard to Apple retail stores is that employees can sell thousands upon thousands of dollars worth of Apple products and still earn a relatively modest wage. The underlying sentiment is that if a retail employee sells so much hardware, he should earn more because he is contributing to Apple’s vast revenues.
The only way for things to shake out that way and remain fair would be if Apple offered performance-based awards or commissions. Apple chose not to do that because doing so would have delivered a fundamentally different customer experience than the one envisioned by Steve Jobs – a fact that the NY Times chose not to explore in any real depth.
You'll be able to replace your new MacBook Pro's SSD, but it won't be cheap.
iFixit has described Apple’s new MacBook Pro as the “least repairable laptop” it has ever opened up, and subsequently gave the device a repair score of 1/10. However, just like the MacBook Air, you’ll be pleased to know that it is possible to upgrade the new MacBook Pro’s solid-state storage yourself.
In what might be a move to clear out current inventory to make room for the upcoming line of Ivy Bridge Macs, Best Buy has slashed prices on all current generation Macs. Every single machine has been reduced in price, and while most discounts aren’t astounding, the extra $100-$200 saved on a new MacBook, iMac, Mac Mini, or Mac Pro, might be enough to entice customers who can’t wait another minute for a new Mac.
These type of discounts usually don’t happen without some involvement by Apple. It’s not uncommon for Apple to notify vendors of expected supply shortages before a transition to a new product line. Apple is expected to release new Macs this summer that utilize Intel’s new Ivy Bridge processors, so buy with caution. You can purchase the discounted Macs at your local Best Buy, or online.
Here’s a break down of the discounts you’ll find online:
Apple's online store named second best online shopping experience
Apple’s online store delivers one of the most satisfying online retail experiences out there. According to customer experience researchers at ForeSee, only one company delivered a better experience than Apple – Amazon. ForeSee also said that Apple (and Amazon) had achieved what it refers to as “the threshold of excellence.”
Perhaps the only profitable section of your local Best Buy.
The era of the big box retailer is kaput. One the one hand, you’ve got online colossi like Amazon crushing brick-and-mortar retailers; on the other, you’ve got the juggernaut of Apple’s Retail Stores, showing everyone else how selling things in meatspace is done.
A couple years ago, the writing was on the wall when Circuit City went out of business. Now, it looks like it’s Best Buy’s turn. After posting a $1.7 billion quarterly loss last quarter, Best Buy is closing 50 stores and $800 million in costs.
Best Buy's reach across the U.S. means it's selling almost as many iPhones as Apple.
Apple’s decision to make Best Buy an official partner for the iPhone is certainly paying off. With 1,100 outlets across the U.S. and an online store, the retailer is now selling almost as many iPhones as Apple itself, according to a survey of customers who purchased the device between December 2011 and February 2012.
You might need this to stock your new iPad with apps.
It’s been an expensive month for many the Apple fan. The new iPad isn’t cheap, and after spending between $500 and $830 on a new top-of-the-line tablet, it might be hard to scrape enough money together to actually furnish your iPad with apps, music or movies.
Don’t worry, we got you covered. Here’s how to save 20% off all App Store or iTunes purchases.
Don't get overwhelmed by the lines, just follow our Launch Day guide
Obviously, the best way to get the new iPad on launch day was to pre-order it as soon as Apple’s website came back up. That option is now gone and you’re looking at shipping times of 2-3 weeks before you can get a new iPad in your hands.
It’s ok. Despite everything Samsung says, waiting in line for the iPad isn’t that bad. In fact, it can even be a lot of fun. If you’re planning on braving the weather and the crowds Friday morning here is our killer guide on the gear you need to not just survive, but thrive on launch day and walk away with the new iPad model you want.
Some pimply Best Buy stock boy's last sight before suffering an early onset aneurysm.
We said just a couple days ago that there’s pretty much zero chance you’ll be getting your pre-ordered new iPad delivered early, but maybe people hanging out at Best Buy will have better luck? According to Engadget, Best Buy is already getting Retina Display iPads delivered to their back stockrooms, which means there’s a fair chance that some idiot stock boy will accidentally put them out on the floor early. Fingers crossed!
Apple’s new iPad is the first of its iOS devices to offer super speedy 4G LTE connectivity, but it’s currently only available on AT&T and Verizon in the United States. According to Best Buy’s internal database, however, it could soon be available on Sprint, too.