That Apple Store in the United Arab Emirates could be the world’s largest

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Middle East luxury lifestyle magazine Edgar claims “insider knowledge” that the planned Apple Store in the United Arab Emirates will be the largest in the world, and will be located in a huge shopping mall in Dubai.

US-based tech giant Apple will open its biggest store in the world at Dubai’s Mall of the Emirates, EDGAR can exclusively reveal [...] Our undisclosed source said that the store – which will be the biggest Apple has ever built – was originally planned to replace the current cinema complex …

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New job listings indicate Apple’s aim to bolster retail marketing team

 

Burberry Group Plc CEO Angela Ahrendts At The London Stock Exchange

Following the recent hire of a former Burberry and Nike social marketing executive to run Apple’s new social media arm, a few job listings on Apple’s website point to an attempt to bolster the company’s retail marketing team. A few of the positions were outlined by ifo Apple Store earlier today and seem to point toward an increased focus on building and maintaining customer loyalty to the Apple brand.

We’ve heard time and again that Apple customers, particularly iPhone users, are among the most loyal, but it seems Apple believes there’s still more to be done in that department. One of these new job listings calls for a “Program Manager — Loyalty, Global Retail Marketing,” which would focus on creating “learning and services strategies” designed to inspire loyalty among Apple’s user base.

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Microsoft wants to make a retail splash near Apple’s iconic 5th Ave. cube

 

Microsoft wants to build a new 8,700 sq. ft. retail store on New York’s Fifth Avenue, just a few blocks away from Apple’s cube, the New York Daily News reported today. The two-story building located at 677 Fifth Avenue is currently vacant, but the Redmond-based software giant wants to setup shop near one of its competitors most iconic locations.

Microsoft has been walking in the shadow of Apple’s retail success for years now. In 2009 the company poached George Blakenship from Cupertino’s retail arm to run its own (weirdly similar) stores. Since then, the Microsoft has been taking advantage of open spaces near a few Apple stores to try to get in on the action.

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Apple launches in-store iPhone trade-in program in Australia, offers A$250 toward upgrade

Late last month 9to5Mac reported that Apple would soon be launching its iPhone trade-in program in Australia. Today the Apple Store app started notifying Australian users that the offer is now available in that country. Customers who trade-in a previous-model iPhone at an official Apple Retail Store can receive up to A$250 in credit toward a new device.

Apple first debuted the “Reuse and Recycle” program in the United States last year, and has slowly been rolling it out across the world since. Earlier this year the offer was expanded to allow for iPad trade-ins as well, though that extension has yet to reach most markets.

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Court approves European trademark on Apple Store design as 38th UK store set to open

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You’d probably recognize that you’d walked into an Apple Store even if both logo and products were covered: the signature wooden tables, glass frontage and glass staircase would give it away. Apple successfully trademarked its store designs in the U.S. last year, and a European Union court has today approved a similar trademark application in Europe …  Read more

Apple Store visuals revamped with inspiration from recent TV campaigns

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IFO Apple Store reports that Apple is revamping its back-lit in-store photo panels, replacing its signature white-background product shots with visuals inspired by its recent advertising. Out are clean, sterile close-ups of the products, and in are colorful visuals showing what people are doing with the products.

The new graphics were photographed like magazine ads, showing the iPad/iPhone being used in actual situations, complete with their surrounding people and places. Their colors, tone and brightness is much richer and darker than the previous graphics …

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Apple stores begin selling & activating prepaid T-Mobile iPhones (Update: AT&T GoPhone too)

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Update #2: AT&T’s official statement: 

AT&T GoPhone prepaid service is now available in Apple Retail stores. Prepaid service is also available for iPhone 5s, iPhone 5c, iPhone 4S in AT&T and Cricket Wireless stores and online at att.com and at cricketwireless.com.

Update: A contact has confirmed that AT&T’s prepaid GoPhone plans are also supported by iPhones at Apple Retail Store locations as we previously reported to expect…

Following our report earlier this month that Apple was preparing to begin selling iPhones with prepaid plans through its retail stores, today T-Mobile confirmed iPhones with its prepaid service can now be purchased and activated in Apple stores across the country.

To go along with the launch, T-Mobile will offer discounts in the form of $50 off the device for prepaid plans and a $50 iTunes gift card for iPhones activated on its Simple Choice postpaid plans.

T-Mobile customers can now purchase and activate an iPhone with T-Mobile prepaid service in more than 250 Apple stores across the nation. In addition, for a limited time, customers who purchase a new iPhone with T-Mobile prepaid service can get $50 off the device, and those who buy a new iPhone with a T-Mobile Simple Choice postpaid plan can get a $50 iTunes gift card.

T-Mobile’s fine print notes: “Must activate device in-store. Limit 1 device per customer. Offer only valid with activation of  $50 or $70 worth of service. Offer subject to change.” That lines up with our earlier report that Apple stores would offer the prepaid iPhones on -T-Mobile’s’ $50/month (1GB LTE data) and $70/month (5GB LTE data) unlimited data plans. Read more

Angela Ahrendts shares insight on her transition to Apple’s corporate culture

Burberry Group Plc CEO Angela Ahrendts At The London Stock Exchange

Apple’s new retail chief Angela Ahrendts has written a blog post on LinkedIn sharing some of the insight she has gathered while making the transition from Burberry to to the Cupertino company. The post opens with advice on how to avoid being overwhelmed with the stresses of a new position:

First: “Stay in your lane.” You’ve been hired because you bring a certain expertise to the team and the company. Try to resist putting additional or undue pressure on yourself trying to learn it all from day one.

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Apple VP Lisa Jackson talks environmental initiatives, plans to get renewable energy in retail to 100% (Video)

Apple’s Lisa Jackson, who joined Apple in June last year to oversee environmental issues from her previous position as head of the Environmental Protection Agency, sat down for an interview this week with Fortune. As you’d expect, the topic of conversation was all things environmental issues at Apple and Jackson talks about many of the accomplishments the company recently announced for Earth Day. In addition to just stats and Apple’s renewable energy initiatives— Apple’s supply chain is responsible for 60% of its footprint— she also gives some hints at what Apple plans to improve in the future.

Jackson noted that Apple has more work to do getting renewable energy to all of its retail stores, but said its working hard to overcome some of the challenges and reach 100% renewable energy: Read more

Apple Store employees switching from iPod touch to iPhone 5s for EasyPay POS system

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Apple is in the process of updating the iPod touch units used by Apple Store employees as a mobile point-of-sale system to the iPhone 5s, according to sources familiar with the roll out. 

Apple first started using its iPod touch as an “EasyPay” system for employees in its retail stores back in 2009 and currently uses 4th gen iPod touch or previous models for staff. It uses a point-of-sale attachment for the iPod touch that adds a magnetic stripe reader, barcode scanning functionality, and more. It’s not clear the exact motivation behind Apple’s move to the iPhone after long using the iPod touch, but the device does provide a few advantages.  Read more

Apple passes Staples to become the #2 online retailer behind Amazon

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According to a new report from the Wall Street Journal (citing e-commerce trade publication Internet Retailer), Apple has managed to overtake Staples and claim the number-two spot in the world of online retail. Apple’s online sales data jumped a significant 24% last year, although this jump is mostly due to the fact that Internet Retailer now includes the company’s online hardware sales along with digital download data from iTunes and the App Store and doesn’t seem to reflect an actual sales increase of that magnitude.

Essentially what that means is that Apple could actually have been sitting in the #2 spot for some time now, but simply wasn’t recognized as such because Internet Retailer previously excluded sales of iPhones, iPads, iPods, Macs, Apple TVs, and other hardware processed through the company’s online store.

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Angela Ahrendts officially starts role as Apple’s new Senior VP of Retail and Online Stores

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Angela Ahrendts has officially taken the reins of Apple’s new Senior Vice President of Retail and Online Stores. Ahrendts’s last day as the CEO of Burberry was yesterday, and Apple’s website has been updated to reflect Ahrendts beginning her work at Apple today. Her biography, which can be found on Apple’s executive leadership website, explains her role at Apple:

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