French antitrust watchdog Autorite de la Concurrence raided Apple offices, wholesalers, and retail stores in France last week as part of an investigation into claims that the Cupertino company carries out anti-competitive practices against third-party retailers by offering consumers better deals through its own stores.
The Apple online store has expanded its presence in Europe by opening up in Russia for the first time. Apple products were previously available only through third-party resellers, but those in Moscow and Saint Petersburg can now buy iPhones, iPads, Macs, and more directly from Apple.
December looks set to be a good month for Apple fans in Russia. Just over a week after the Cupertino company rolled out the iTunes Store there, a local Apple Premium Reseller, re:Store, has announced that the iPad mini will be launching on December 14, the same day Russia will get the iPhone 5. That’s a week earlier than local media have been reporting, but an official date is yet to be confirmed by Apple.
Despite its focus on a speedy international rollout for the new iPad, which has seen the tablet hit 57 countries in just over one month, Apple is still keeping on top of demand and working to reduce shipping delays in its initial launch territories. After delays dropped to just 3-5 days in the United States last week, customers in Europe are now facing a wait of just 7 days.