Tokyo Stories December 7, 2015

Bomb scare closes Tokyo Apple Store as handwritten note demands talk be cancelled

Apple cancelled a talk scheduled to be held yesterday at its Tokyo Ginza retail store after a handwritten bomb threat was received, reports Public Slate. The store was closed for an hour while police searched for explosives, but nothing was found.

The event was to feature guest, Isao Yukisada, a Japanese film director. The director was scheduled to speak at 2 p.m.

It’s not known why the event was targeted.

The store previously made the news when it opened its doors early to allow queuing iPhone customers in before an approaching typhoon hit.

Via CoM

Tokyo Stories June 1, 2015

Screenshot 2015-06-01 10.22.19

Jay Blahnik, one of the lead directors behind the health and fitness functionality in iOS 8 and the Apple Watch, is continuing to host events at Apple Stores. At the end of April, Blahnik held an interview with Christy Turlington Burns at an Apple Store in the United Kingdom, and now Blahnik is making his way to Australia and Asia. Late last week, Blahnik held a Q/A session in Australia with personal trainer Michelle Bridges. Here are videos of Blahnik discussing the importance of walking along with other health tips with Bridges:

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Tokyo Stories March 27, 2015

selfridges

We reported last month that Apple was creating Apple Watch displays inside department stores in London and Paris, adding earlier this month that Tokyo was joining the party. All three stores-within-a-store are now official, with entries on Apple’s website. As we previously noted, the locations are Selfridges in LondonGaleries Lafayette in Paris and Isetan Shinjuku in Tokyo.

All three are opening on April 10th, the same day Apple Watchs are available for preview and pre-orders in Apple’s own retail stores, and are being given a high-profile presence in each department store …  expand full story

Tokyo Stories March 25, 2015

yokohama

This render provides our first look at Apple’s plan to build a sizeable new R&D center in Japan. We first heard that Apple would be building a facility “on par with Apple’s biggest R&D centers in Asia” from the Japanese Prime Minister late last year.

Japanese news site NHK reports that the center will be built on the outskirts of Yokohama, the second biggest city in Japan after nearby Tokyo. The city’s mayor announced in a news conference that Apple had purchased the remains of a Panasonic factory on the site, and would be building a 25,000 square meter facility over four floors. The scale of the building would suggest that it could accommodate around several hundred employees, though Apple may of course be allowing for future expansion. expand full story

Tokyo Stories March 15, 2015

Apple Watch Store japan

At the Isetan Department Store in Shinjuku, Tokyo, Apple is building a store specifically for the Apple Watch on the ground floor. Macotakara thinks it might be a permanent fixture because it is listed in the mall directory below.

Japan is one of the 9 countries where the Apple Watch will launch on April 24th. Earlier this week we saw the size of the Apple Watch Store at Galleries Lafayette in Paris and at London Selfridges. Apple also began advertising for its Apple Watch in its traditional stores this week.

This will take some getting used to. Imagine a world where there is an Apple Store on one side of the mall and an Apple Watch store on the other like so many Starbucks.  expand full story

Tokyo Stories July 18, 2014

Problems with Hannover Apple Store reportedly resolved, opening in September

Humidity and mold problems that delayed the opening of the new Apple Store in Hannover, Germany, have reportedly been resolved, and the store is now expected to open in September, reports ifun, citing several sources involved in the project.

The store had originally seemed close to completion in March, but humidity in the building reportedly led to mold in the fabric of the building, requiring remedial work.

The site ifun reported that employees who had already been hired based on the previous anticipated opening have been informed of the latest developments, and is speculating that Apple may time the opening to coincide with the launch of the iPhone 6, rumored to be on 19th September.

Following with the appointment of retail head Angela Ahrendts, Apple announced an ambitious international expansion program for its retail stores, with around 20 expected to open this year. International stores already opened this year include the first ever Apple Stores in Brazil and Turkey, the fourth store in Switzerland and the eighth store in Japan.

Earlier this month, Apple was granted a European trademark on the design of its retail stores.

Tokyo Stories June 30, 2014

Jason Mraz to perform at new Tokyo Apple Store to promote upcoming album

Musician Jason Mraz, who is mostly known for his single “I’m Yours,” will be performing at Apple’s new store in Omotesando, Tokyo, according to a note posted on the store’s webpage. Mraz will be performing from 8:00 PM to 8:30 PM local time on July 1st in order to promote his upcoming album called “YES!” The album is available for pre-order on the iTunes Store for $10.99 and various singles from the album are already available for immediate download. Apple frequently has musical guests at its stores and events, but Mraz’s appearance will be one of the more notable performances at an Apple Store in recent years.

Tokyo Stories June 12, 2014

Image of the large crowd

<a href="https://twitter.com/ifostore/status/477263528198279170">Image of the large crowd</a>

Apple’s first Tokyo Apple Store opening since 2005 occurred today in the city of Omotesando. The new store features two floors and a fully glass exterior. Apple published a video showing preparations for the store earlier this week. As she promised in a memo to employees earlier today, Angela Ahrendts is on hand for the opening:

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Burberry Group Plc CEO Angela Ahrendts At The London Stock Exchange

After being on the job for approximately a month and a half, new Apple Senior VP of Retail and Online Stores Angela Ahrendts has sent her first memo to Apple Retail employees. In the memo, Ahrendts discusses Apple’s culture, her visits to stores thus far, and her plans for the future.

“I have spent most of my time getting to know and understand the many functions and teams in Cupertino, along with our short and long term initiatives. I was thrilled to meet many of you at stores in San Francisco and London this month, and I’m looking forward to Tokyo and the Omotesando opening,” Ahrendts said. “Every couple of weeks, we will be visiting stores across the world to see and learn what we do best and hear your thoughts about opportunities ahead,” she added.

We previously profiled Ahrendts plans for transforming Apple retail with a new end-to-end sales experience, mobile payment initiatives, and an increased emphasis on the Chinese consumer. Today’s memo from Ahrendts to employees reiterates many of these points… expand full story

Tokyo Stories June 11, 2014

Apple has shared a video on its official YouTube channel of its preparations for the June 13th grand opening of the Omotesando, Tokyo Apple Store. The video is just under a minute long, but it does provide some perspective into the lengths that Apple takes to prepare stores for their openings. You can view the video below:

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Tokyo Stories June 9, 2014

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Last month we showed you the new Apple Store in Portland as well as to soon-to-open location in Madrid, and now photos of a new, multi-level glass Apple Store are starting to surface from Japan. The gigantic retail location is located on the Omotesando avenue alongside several other flagship retailers and is set to open to the public on Friday, June 13th, as invitations to attend the day one experience have already been sent out. More photos below… expand full story

Tokyo Stories May 29, 2014

Apple continues to expand green retail efforts with new Omotesandō, Tokyo store

Apple is continuing its push to expand its retail arm under the guidance of new Retail VP Angela Ahrendts, with new stores popping up around the world. Today another of those new stores has been revealed as green and white signs promoting the upcoming Apple Store, Omotestando in Tokyo, Japan. The store is said to be opening in June.

According to Macotakara [translation], the new store will use a “curtain of green” to control the interior climate and cut energy usage. This “green curtain” apparently consists of plants that will be grown to cover the exterior of the building, providing a type of organic insulation. The vegetation also helps absorb carbon dioxide in the area. The signage pictured above certain seems to hint at such a system for the Omotesandō location.

Of course, this step makes sense for Apple, which has always been comitted to finding environmentally-friendly ways to run its operations. From seeking renewable energy sources for retail stores and datacenters, to investigating green power for mobile devices, and designing what could be the world’s largest corporate solar power installation to power its new headquarters, Apple has certainly earned its place on the EPA’s list of top green-powered companies.

More photos of the store (via Ringo-Sanco) are below.

Tokyo Stories September 25, 2013

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In April 2013, when WWDC sold out in a matter of minutes, Apple said that they would hold tech talks later in the year. Apple has now sent out the details for these events, with a clear focus on getting developers up to speed with iOS 7.

The talks are going to be held in San Francisco, New York, Tokyo, Shanghai, Berlin and London. Unusually, Apple is holding two events in each city this year, one for app development and one dedicated to game development. Topics revolve around the new API’s in iOS 7, to further encourage developer adoption of the new technologies. The talks are being held across October, November and December.

Registered developers must apply by September 27th 2013, if they want to attend. Developers can attend either the app developer day or the game developer day, not both.

Tokyo Stories September 16, 2013

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Hardcore iPhone fans in Japan already queuing for the 5s and 5c going on sale on Friday weren’t going to be put off by a mere typhoon (hurricane) warning: they continued their vigil outside Tokyo’s Ginza store. Apple Store staff opened the doors at 7.30am, shortly before the typhoon hit, to bring customers inside, reports Kotaku.

They were allowed to bring in their wet possessions, rest in the Apple Store theater until 10am, and were even given bottled water. “I was so moved how Apple treats its customers,” said YouTube user AppTaylor

Video below the fold …  expand full story

Tokyo Stories August 28, 2013

tokyo

Tokyo skyline: vacationadvice101.com

Bloomberg is reporting that Apple is planning its first new store in Tokyo since 2005.

Apple plans to open a store in Tokyo’s upscale Omotesando shopping district as early as March, according to a person familiar with the plans.

Construction is scheduled to be completed by February, the person said, asking not to be identified because they aren’t authorized to speak for Apple.

Tokyo is noted for its high land values. Bloomberg estimating the cost of the land at around $164M with the finished store expected to be worth a staggering $256M …  expand full story

Tokyo Stories October 14, 2012

Developer allegedly gets his hands on photos of Google’s Maps for iOS?

Developer Ben Guild posted alleged screenshots of Google’s upcoming Maps for iOS app. He claimed the photos show the alpha version of the app that is “speedy” and supports the iPhone 5. Further details in the report assert that Maps for iOS is vector-based and supports two-finger rotation.

The photos do not show anything too mind-boggling. However, if real, they show Google is actively working on the app which many hope is coming. Last month, we reported that Google has a Maps for iOS coming—and others agree.

The hope for Google to release a standalone app came after the flop of Maps that Apple introduced in iOS 6. Users have complained, while Apple CEO Tim Cook promised Maps would get better over time. Google chairperson Eric Schmidt voiced last week in Tokyo that Apple should have kept Google Maps: “We think it would have been better if they had kept ours. But what do I know?” He would neither confirm nor deny working on a Maps app for iOS, but he mentioned Apple would “have to approve it. It’s their choice.”

If it is released, I think it is safe to say that a Google Maps for iOS would quickly reach top of the charts in the App Store.

Update: A Twitterer shows how easy these are to fake:

Tokyo Stories November 2, 2011

Steve Cano to replace Ron Johnson as Head of Retail at Apple? (Update: Search ongoing)

  Update: The reporters at Bloomberg are somehow using us as a source for this false rumor.  We’ve contacted them to correct but they’ve so far left it untouched.  Our report comes from iFoAppleStore and CultofMac (below) Updated from Cult of Mac: Apple has gotten back to us a statement, reading: “The search for a […]

Tokyo Stories August 28, 2011

Abdulfattah John Jandali - Steve Jobs' Biological Father

Abdulfattah John Jandali – Steve Jobs’ Biological Father

In the tumult following Steve Jobs’ resignation, the New York Post and others (here’s a good one translated from Arabic) have been digging up interviews with Steve Jobs’ biological father, Abdulfattah John Jandali, who is a Syrian-born Vice President of a casino in Reno, Nevada.  He’s an 80-year old workaholic who is trying to avoid retirement at all costs (sounds familiar).

The Syrian immigrant says he is overcome with guilt for his treatment of Jobs and only learned recently that the child he gave up for adoption was the famous CEO.

“This might sound strange, though, but I am not prepared, even if either of us was on our deathbeds, to pick up the phone to call him,” Jandali said.

“Steve will have to do that, as the Syrian pride in me does not want him ever to think I am after his fortune,” he said.

“Now I just live in hope that, before it is too late, he will reach out to me, because even to have just one coffee with him just once would make me a very happy man,” he said.

Jandali says although he was in love with his now ex-wife Joanne, her father was a tyrant and would not allow her to marry him since he was from Syria. Joanne then upped and moved to San Francisco to give birth to Jobs without her family or Jandali knowing.

“She did not want to bring shame onto the family and thought this was the best for everyone.”

It is a pretty emotional story overall.  The short of it is that they’ve never talked and, although he has sent Jobs a few emails (haven’t we all?), he’s afraid to call Jobs.  Because of this, he fears they never will communicate.

It was our natural inclination to see what this guy looked like but Google images didn’t return anything.  Therefore, we decided to dig a little deeper.

Without trying to offend anyone, below are some more public pictures of Jobs’ biological father we found on the net.  There is definitely a resemblance! expand full story

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