store Stories May 26, 2016

Apple-Arabic-site

Apple today debuted a new Arabic version of Apple.com, bringing the language to its website and online store for the first time alongside a new font right-to-left text.

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store Stories February 26, 2016

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While Apple has not yet officially announced that it will open up a store in the World Trade Center’s new transportation hub in New York City, there have been reports that such a store has been in the plans for the past two years. Today, a source who has been inside of the yet-to-be-opened Oculus shopping section of the hub has sent us photo evidence that Apple is preparing to open up a store in the shopping area. Above is a photo from this week showing the space for the store, but formal construction has not yet begun, according to the source.

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store Stories February 15, 2016

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Apple looks to be set to open a new flagship retail store in Stockholm, Sweden, according to a report from local news outlet Expressen. The report claims that Apple plans for the store to be similar to the iconic Fifth Avenue location in New York and that it hopes to open it within the next two years.

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store Stories January 29, 2016

Apple TV clips

Apple has dipped its toes in original content with projects like the Beats 1 radio station, but there has been a lot of speculation around whether the company will ever produce its own media content, as both Amazon and Netflix have shown it can be very lucrative, launching many successful independent television series in recent years.

According to a contributor report from The Street, Apple is now looking to take that jump. It wants to produce original TV shows as exclusive content for its iTunes library offerings, according to the report, having spoken to ‘members of the Hollywood creative community’ late in 2015. These new TV shows could form part of a future Apple TV cable subscription service.

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store Stories January 11, 2016

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French Apple news site MacGeneration today reports that Apple is soon planning to open a new flagship retail store in Paris, France, citing French newspaper Le Figaro. The report claims that Apple has secured a lease for a 20,341-square-feet seven story building at 114 Avenue des Champs-Élysées. The company plans to operate a retail store on the lower levels of the building, while the upper levels will be reserved for office space.

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store Stories May 19, 2015

Express clothing store starts officially accepting Apple Pay

Add Express to the list of retailers now taking Apple Pay at checkout. Checks with multiple Express stores across the United States and tips from readers indicate that the fashion and clothing retailer starting accepting the iPhone and Apple Watch payment feature this week. Express joins a short list of clothing stores that formally accept Apple Pay, which already includes Bloomingdales and American Eagle. According to Apple’s website, more clothing stores such as Urban Outfitters and Anthropologie will start accepting Apple Pay soon. Earlier this month, grocery store Trader Joe’s started officially taking Apple Pay, while 30 new banks and credit unions started showing their support this morning. We also reported this morning that Tim Cook told employees in China that the company is in talks to bring the mobile payments service to the region.

store Stories April 22, 2015

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Update: Confusing the situation further, HDBlog has received news from Italian Apple PR that Milan will not have Apple Watch stock to buy.

Amidst all the craziness, it now transpires that Apple Watch will in fact be available to be buy at some retail locations on Friday. The New York Times reports that select boutique locations will have stock in the brick-and-mortar locations of Apple Watch Sport and Apple Watch.

This includes Dover Street Market in Tokyo and London, Maxfield in Los Angeles, Collette in Paris, the Corner in Berlin and Corso Como in Milan.

Apple had previously announced these locations in a press release but it was unclear whether the plans had changed as Apple had since said that there would be no in-store stock until June at the earliest. although now it appears this only applies to Apple’s own retail stores.

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store Stories April 10, 2015

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Reader Mark Davies went into the Berlin Apple Store this morning to try on the Apple Watch/Sport models but got a little surprise from the employees. Here’s the first hand account…

So I go to the Apple store here in Berlin thinking I made an appointment to see the Sport and Apple Watch editions. When I get there, they check me in and tell me to wait in the line. When my turn comes a really nice Apple employee asks me which models of the Edition I would like to see. I was surprised obviously, and explained that there is no way I would consider buying one with the price. He proceeds to let me try on the Sport and Watch versions and walks me through the demos. Then he asks if I still want to see the Edition models. I say, “sure, why not”…

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store Stories December 16, 2014

Apple halts online sales in Russia to review pricing amid ‘extreme’ currency fluctuations

Bloomberg reports this afternoon that Apple has ceased online sales in Russia due to “extreme” fluctuations in the value of the ruble. Apple has previously attempted to combat the unpredictable swings in the country’s official currency by adjusting the prices of its products, having most recently increased the price of the iPhone 6 by 25% in the country last month.

store Stories December 5, 2014

iPod classic (four-up)

The videotaped deposition of Apple’s late co-founder Steve Jobs was played in court today as part of the ongoing antitrust lawsuit involving the iPod, iTunes, and digital rights management. As CNET reports, the video revealed new details of Apple’s deals with record labels and why the FairPlay DRM was created.

Jobs said in his statement that because the record labels were afraid that a store like iTunes could lead to music piracy, they required Apple to create and implement a digital rights management system—which would become the FairPlay system—in order to gain the rights to distribute music. DRM wasn’t something that Apple wanted to do, but had to do.

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store Stories October 10, 2014

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Apple has started rolling out a redesigned version of the iTunes Store for users running iTunes 12 less than a week ahead of what’s expected to be the launch of OS X Yosemite. The new storefront takes design cues from the iTunes and App Store home pages on iOS devices, featuring a flattened, side-scrolling carousel at the top of the page in place of the old “card”-style header. This new header can be scrolled horizontally using two fingers or even dragged around with a mouse.

Individual pages for albums, TV shows, and iOS apps have also been redesigned and now feature more iOS-like controls throughout. Download buttons have been reduced to simple outlines. Shadows and textures have been removed throughout the store, putting the content directly on a stark white or dark gray background.

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store Stories September 4, 2014

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Earlier this week, iOS users discovered that the App Store was experiencing some technical issues that caused every item for sale to become unavailable. Now, only two days later, the company’s status page indicates that the App Store on Mac and iOS, iBooks Store, and various iTunes services such as the music store and Radio, are all suffering from even more downtime.

According to the status page, the issues first cropped up around 4:30 PM and have persisted for about three hours so far. A notice on the page states that only “some users” are having difficulty accessing the store, but there’s no mention of exactly how many users could be impacted.

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store Stories June 20, 2014

Kanye West complains Apple trades iTunes placement for live appearances instead of paying artists (Video)

Kanye West hasn’t been shy when it comes to expressing his opinions about Apple. Earlier this week he sat down for an interview with AdWeek and noted he thought Samsung’s deal last year with Jay-Z might have influenced Apple to invest in pop culture through its purchase of Beats. Above, Kanye expands on that thought in an interview with Bloomberg during the Cannes Creativity Festival. In the interview, while explaining that he thinks Apple didn’t see the value in investing in pop culture before the Samsung deal with Jay-Z, Kanye drives the point home by noting Apple offered artists “extra space on the iTunes page” instead of paying them to perform at the iTunes Festival.

We already knew that Apple wasn’t paying artists to perform at its iTunes Festival, which arrived in the U.S. for the first time this year during the SXSW festival in Austin, Texas. Kanye previously called out Tim Cook during one of his usual onstage rants earlier this year, but we didn’t know Apple was offering artists prime real estate on the iTunes store in exchange for their performances.

Kanye’s full quote is below:

“It showed, now that Steve has passed… It showed a number one company the importance of connecting with culture. And I know you might of heard about this thing where I was on stage calling Tim Cook out and saying why do you have these guys performing at SXSW and you don’t want to pay them. You just want to give us extra space on the iTunes page and stuff. Meanwhile, Samsung realized, the whole point of what we’re saying, is that no you have to go and pay these guys. And that culture and creativity is worth something. The best thing about the fall of Blackberry and the rise at Apple is the win for creativity…

store Stories May 25, 2014

Apple’s SSL certificate that is responsible for verifying and authenticating connections to Apple’s Mac App Store software update servers has expired, causing the Mac App Store to issue errors like those above. Another error notification points to the swscan.apple.com server as being the issue, below.

Server-cert-error

 

A quick search shows that this SSL certificate expired yesterday May 24th at midnight.

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store Stories April 16, 2014

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Apple and Shazam are teaming up to build a music identification feature natively into iOS, according to a Bloomberg report. The feature will allow users to find the name and artist of a song that’s playing, likely with the option to download the song from the iTunes Store or create an new iTunes Radio station.

Unlike some of Apple’s other music-releated features (such as Podcasts and iTunes U), the system will be built into the OS directly rather than require a separate download. So far there isn’t any confirmation of whether this feature will appear in iOS 8 or a later version, but with WWDC right around the corner, Apple will need to work quickly to secure the deal if the feature is to be announced with the next-gen software update.

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store Stories April 6, 2014

Apple launches iPhone trade-in program in German retail stores, offers big savings on new iPhones

In August of last year, Apple launched a trade-in program that allowed iPhone customers to turn in their old iPhones in exchange for a discount on a new device. The program has expanded to several countries since it launched last year. Starting today the company now extends the offer to German customers as well.

German users of the Apple Store app have started seeing the program listed within the app, though the update has yet to roll out to Apple’s retail website. Under this program, qualifying devices can be traded in and recycled for up to €230 off the price of a new, upgraded iPhone at any Apple Retail Store in the country.

Thanks for the tip, Marco!

store Stories March 11, 2014

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Apple is planning to change up retail in India in a big—and small—way, according to a report by The Economic Times. According to the Times, Apple plans to open a collection of small, iOS-centric stores. The stores will be setup by local distribution partners, not by first-party retail staff. While the main focus of these locations will be on mobile devices, Apple’s other offerings will also be represented to some degree in each store.

In fact, the focus of these stores will not even be Apple’s latest devices, according to the report. Instead, these local shops will focus on the less-expensive models that Apple offers, including the iPad 2 and iPhone 4s. Macs and other products in these smaller stores will also be lower-priced models. The goal of the local establishments seems to be to place Apple’s most affordable products as close as possible potential customers—a neccessary move if Apple is to continue gaining ground in the country.

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store Stories March 4, 2014

RadioShack announces plan to close 1,100 stores nationwide as smartphone sales fail to carry company

ABC News reports that RadioShack will close 1,100 stores following a disappointing holiday season and generally unsuccessful attempt to rebrand the chain as the go-to retailer for smartphones and accessories. The number represents about 20% of the electronics shop’s locations. The company previously announced plans to close only 400-700 stores.

That doesn’t mean RadioShack will be disappearing completely, though. Around 4,000 stores are still expected to remain open. While the cell phone business hasn’t been able to keep the entire company afloat, it has apparently provided enough fuel to keep the majority of the stores functional… for now, at least.

store Stories February 24, 2014

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Apple quietly updated the retail section of its website today with a new look that more closely resembles iOS 7. Where the previous version of these pages used content boxes, borders, textured backgrounds, and gradients, the new page instead utilizes ample whitespace and thinner typefaces.

The change is probably best illustrated on the section’s home page, where images previously constrained by content boxes now fill the entire page. On the “Learn” page, buttons with heavy gradients have been replaced by thinly-outlined, lighter versions of the previous design. Gradient-filled headers have disappeared from every page, now replaced by unadorned text.

Oddly, the “Make a Reservation” button that allowed users to quickly create a Genius Bar appointment has been removed from the site’s navigation. Appointments can only be made by navigating to the Genius Bar page and clicking a link in the first paragraph of that page’s content. The Concierge page has not been updated to the new design yet.

You’ll find a bunch of before-and-after comparisons and take our poll on the new design below:

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store Stories January 14, 2014

Leaked images provide a first look at the new flagship Apple Store in Brisbane, Australia

Apple is opening a new retail outlet in Brisbane this week, but you won’t have to wait until Friday to see the finished store. Images have leaked online from an anonymous source (via MacRumors). This will be Apple’s twenty-second store in the country, and one of the first few new stores opened in 2014.

We’ve included even more of the leaked shots below.

store Stories January 7, 2014

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Apple has launched a new online store through Tmall, a Chinese popular e-commerce site Tmall, reports the Wall Street Journal. Tmall, which is owned by the Alibaba Group, is already home to thousands of official retail outlets for other brands, such as Nike. The new storefront will not replace Apple’s own first-party store, but will instead complement it.

Like the store on Apple’s website, the Tmall store will be participating in Apple’s “Red Friday” sales event later this week. Unlike Apple’s eBay store in the United States, the Tmall site sells brand-new products rather than refurbished ones.

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store Stories January 6, 2014

Apple announces January 10th ‘Red Friday’ sale for its Asia online and physical stores

Apple has announced its “Red Friday” sale for the Asian online and physical retail stores. The sale will offer one-day discounts on Apple products, much like “Black Friday” in the United States, to celebrate the new lunar year at the end of January.

Apple hasn’t specified exactly what specials will be offered, but price cuts on Macs and mobile devices is the usual for these sales.

store Stories December 16, 2013

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Apple has just published its Best of 2013 page, highlighting some of the most popular music, movies, TV shows, iOS apps, ebooks, and podcasts from the past year. In the music section, Lorde’s “Royals” took the pick for Song of the Year, while Macklemore & Ryan Lewis’ The Heist was named Best Album.

Gravity, the box office hit starring George Clooney and Sandra Bullock, was named Movie of the Year. Despite the confusion it caused when its final season was broken into two separate purchases earlier this year, Breaking Bad was Apple’s pick for Show of the Year.

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store Stories December 12, 2013

Beyoncé releases unannounced self-titled ‘visual album’ exclusively on iTunes

Beyoncé surprised fans tonight by releasing a previously unannounced album exclusively on iTunes. The “visual album,” as it’s called in the item description, has taken over the store’s front page. It features 14 songs and 18 videos, including videos for each song, and a digital booklet.

The album is currently only available for purchase in its entirety, but the store description says the individual songs will be made available on Friday, December 20th.

Beyoncé is available for $15.99 on the iTunes Store.

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