What you need to know
- Apple is expanding its 'Express' retail format.
- It will open the feature up to 50 stores in the U.S. and Europe.
- The format involves a wall at the front of the store and sales counters akin to "normal" retail.
Apple is expanding its 'Express' retail format to 50 locations in the US and Europe by the end of October to help with iPhone 12 sales, according to a new report.
The new "Express" stores come as COVID-19 rates are rising around the United States and Europe. The new format has a wall built in front of the main store with sales counters protected by plexiglass and a few shelves of accessories such as phone cases and AirPods. Customers make an appointment to pick up orders placed online or interact with Apple's technicians for customer service.
For Apple, which has 271 retail stores in the United States, the new format could help it navigate a holiday sales challenge.
The report says the new mode will give Apple more options with higher COVID-19 infection rates alongside its curbside pickup service. As you can imagine, mall stores and busy downtown locations don't really lend themselves to that approach. Apple's Deirdre O'Brien stated:
"It's a swifter way for us to serve customers. It allows us to maintain all the appropriate social distancing and maintain all of our health protocols within our stores."
The iPhone 12 will be released tomorrow, October 23, alongside the iPhone 12 Pro.
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