Weekend Reading: The Apple Experience by Carmine Gallo [excerpt]

If you are wondering why your recent trip to the Apple Store left you loving Apple more than ever or wanting your customers to feel the same way about your company, we got the book for you.

The Apple Experience” by veteran Apple/technology author Carmine Gallo deep dives into the Apple retail experience and breaks down exactly what it is that Apple retail employees are trained to do just to make a customer feel good about an experience (and want to come back). The 235-page book goes through every aspect of employee training and pours through countless hours of interviews with employees and shoppers on Apple’s five-step service: Approach, Probe, Present, Listen, and End.

Even if you do not own a retail business and just want to understand how Apple retail works, there is a lot here for you.

Gallo heeds his own advice by delivering a fun and incredibly insightful book that will help people understand the “magic” of the Apple retail experience.

The Apple Experience is at Amazon. The hardcover is $16.50, and the Kindle version is $9.99. When it hits the iBookstore, it will be available here.

An “Apple Experience” excerpt from “Chapter 10: Sell the Benefit” is below: Read more

Is Apple falsely advertising 4G on its iPads in Australia?

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission is seeking to have Apple drop the “4G” from the advertising/website of its new iPad products with cell modems…

The ACCC alleges that Apple’s recent promotion of the new “iPad with WiFi + 4G” is misleading because it represents to Australian consumers that the product “iPad with WiFi + 4G” can, with a SIM card, connect to a 4G mobile data network in Australia, when this is not the case.

Optus and Telstra do not use the compatible LTE radio frequencies as Apple’s iPad; therefore, new iPads are not compatible with the LTE 4G networks in Australia. Both mobile carriers already dropped the “4G” naming on the new iPad on their websites. However, Apple does display “iPad +4G” on the Apple.com.au website.

The speed that the iPad gets in Australia is pretty solid…

Importantly, Apple has the subtext:

The iPad with Wi-Fi + 4G model can roam worldwide on fast GSM/UMTS networks, including HSPA, HSPA+, and DC-HSDPA. When you travel internationally, you can use a micro-SIM card from a local carrier. You can also connect to the 4G LTE networks of AT&T in the U.S. and Bell, Rogers, and Telus in Canada.

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More importantly, it does not look like Australians play high and fast with marketing terms like “4G” as we do here in the United States, which now describes HSPA+ on AT&T iPhone 4S’s. Read more

New iPad Wi-Fi issues seem to be software related, should be easy to patch

We mentioned earlier that some new iPad owners were reporting issues with Wi-Fi. The problem seems to affect all models of the new device with both users of the 4G LTE model and the Wi-Fi-only model experiencing poor Wi-Fi reception. Many forum posters compared Wi-Fi reception with their other iOS devices and MacBooks on the same network:

“My iPad 3rd generation has much worse range than my iPad 1. Two places I use it most My Driveway, and “down the hall at work” iPad 1 (iPhone 4s, and Macbook) all have solid connections. New iPad nothing. not a thing.”

One user reports only receiving good reception within six feet of a router while another claims to have had issues with four different third-generation iPads. The good news is that the fix is likely software related, as many in the forums pointed to temporary fixes like rebooting the device or toggling Wi-Fi on and off. OS X Daily confirmed resetting Wi-Fi and network settings seems to fix the issue for some and provided instructions. In 2010, the first generation iPad had Wi-Fi connectivity issues for some users and Apple eventually issued a software update to fix the problem, which is detailed in this support document. According to Apple, only “a very small number of iPad users” experienced the issue and that seems to be the case with the new iPad as well.

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Consumer Reports: New iPad hits 116 degrees running games,’very warm but not especially uncomfortable’

Earlier today, we reported that the “heatgate” controversy was starting to pick up media attention with Consumer Reports announcing it is officially investigating the issue. Consumer Reports has now published its report claiming the new iPad “can run significantly hotter than the earlier iPad2 model when running an action game.” In fact, its tests with a thermal imaging camera found the new iPad could hit 116 degrees, which is much hotter than 92.5 Fahrenheit recorded in earlier GL benchmark tests. The tests were conducted with LTE turned off and Wi-Fi running.

Consumer Reports explained:
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3rd Generation iPad Geekbenched: 1GHz Processor, 1GB RAM, 756 total score

Following their unboxing video, we have some more from the guys at Tinhte: They ran their Retina iPad through Geekbench and got some interesting results.

The processor is clocked at 1GHz and is of the same class as the iPad 2 processor.

The RAM is indeed 1GB confirming numerous previous reports including our own whispers.

The mid-700 score is similar to the iPad 2, which scores also scores in the mid-700s, while the original iPad scores in the 400s. The difference is likely due to the benchmarking software’s inability to test the 4 core GPU or the “X” factor in the iPad’s new A5X chip.

There are many more scores at the source. Thanks Daniel!

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Apple retail stores mistakingly discounting iPad 2 by $200?

Yesterday, we told you the iPad 2 was discounted by $100, as announced by Apple during the new iPad unveiling, through a number of retailers including BestBuy and RadioShack. According to one tipster, Apple retail stores are also offering the discounted iPad 2. However, in the case of the West Farms Apple Store in Connecticut, Apple discounted at least one Wi-Fi + 3G 32GB iPad 2 (White, AT&T) by $200. As you can see from the receipt above, store employees mistakenly added an extra $100 discount to the already discounted iPad 2.

The 32GB iPad 2 presumably dropped from $729 to $629 following Apple’s announcement, but it sold for $529 (the new price of the entry level 16GB Wi-Fi + 3G iPad 2) to at least one surprised customer. It was likely a mistake on Apple’s part due to an employee not noticing the discount had already been applied.

However, is it possible Apple is offering a special promotion on Wi-Fi + 3G iPad 2 models (other than the 16GB model) leading up to the new iPad launch on March 16? Apple never mentioned the 32 or 64GB iPad 2 during its event.

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Former Broadcom GM Mobile Platforms says we’ll see 802.11ac on PCs and access points later this year

Giving a talk at Gerson Lehrman Group’s G+ community, the former EVP & FM of Mobile Platforms at Broadcom Scott Bibaud offered the above explanation about the benefits 802.11ac would bring to all devices. We have discussed Gigabit Wi-Fi before, but we did not really get a handle on when the new Wi-Fi standard would be hitting technology we now use. Apple is usually an early adopter of such technologies, but it is not likely—as you can hear above— that Apple’s next round of products will include this feature. Just think Airports and Macs at the end of this year, and iPad 4 /iPhone 6.

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Apple’s Time Capsules go missing from retail stores globally

Shipping times for Time Capsules are increasing steadily across regional online Apple stores in the United States, Australia, New Zealand, Germany, Italy, United Kingdom, France and other territories. While the 3TB version of Time Capsule is in stock at certain online Apple Stores, most now list the wireless backup appliance with up to one to three weeks delivery time. Meanwhile, 2TB Time Capsules in some stores take one to two weeks. Over at Amazon (temporarily out of stock) and Best Buy (sold out) things are not looking peachy either.

This is similar to the AppleTV shortages we noted over the weekend but may not be for the same reason.

Time Capsule constrains could be linked to the Thai floods that have led to global shortages of hard drives and subsequent jacked prices by as much as 28 percent. A disruption in the hard drive supply already affected the 27-inch iMac. That, plus the fact that other AirPort-branded products stay in stock only reinforce the notion that constrained supplies of Apple’s Time Capsule is likely caused by global hard drive shortages.

According to an unnamed tip that 9to5Mac received this morning, several Apple outlets in Australia no longer have Time Capsules in stock:

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iPad 3 incoming, WiFi + 3G iPad 2 models facing supply constraints and shortages at major retailers

Typically a solid indicator of an Apple product refresh is when the previous model of that particular product begins to see constraints and shortages. We saw this process prior to the launch of the iPad 2 in March of 2011, and we typically also see this process to prior to launches of Apple’s new Macs. Some examples from recent memory include MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, and iMac constraints prior to their 2011 refreshes. Now, the same situation is starting to occur with the iPad 2, a device that will most likely be succeeded by a third-generation iPad in about a month.

According to a source familiar with Apple’s product distribution channels, the iPad 2 WiFi + 3G is constrained. Supply shortages span beyond Apple’s own distribution channels, though, as major retailers are reporting “out of stock” status for the 3G iPad 2. This includes, but is likely not limited to, Carphone Warehouse and Orange in the United Kingdom. Carphone Warehouse is reporting shortges of five out of six of their 3G iPad 2 models (everything but the black 64GB unit), and Orange UK is reporting shortages of half of the 3G iPad 2 SKUs: both 32GB models and the white 64GB unit. Read on for all of the details:

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Microsoft releases iPad version of OneNote app

Microsoft today introduced an iPad version of their OneNote mobile app previously only available to iPhone users. The new app has of course been given a facelift for the iPad with a two-pane view and also includes a tabbed user interface, quick note creation, tables in notebooks, and the ability to sync notebooks over WiFi.

Additionally, the iPhone app has also been updated to version 1.3 and both apps support several new languages including English, Chinese, Czech, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, French, German, Greek, Hungarian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Swedish, and Turkish. 

*With the free version of OneNote for iPad you can access, create and edit up to 500 notes. Once you reach this limit you can still view, delete, and sync your notes. To continue taking and editing notes, you can upgrade OneNote for iPad to unlimited use through an in-app purchase. Read more