What you need to know
- Huawei has opened a new store in Barcelona next door to Apple.
- A few people have been quick to spot the similarities to Apple's own retail stores.
- It even includes shelving that looks identical to Apple's own patented design.
Huawei has just opened a brand new retail store in Barcelona, and boy does it look familiar.
The new store was opened on February 22. Huawei had originally planned the store's opening to coincide with Mobile World Congress, but we all know how that turned out. Deciding to proceed anyway, Huawei opened its new Plaza Catalunya store, a 750 square meter retail store spread over two floors.
However, several people have been quick to spot some rather brazen similarities to Apple's own retail experience, notably Michael Steeber on Twitter.
So Huawei opened a new store right next to Apple Passeig de Gràcia in Barcelona. They’re always heavily “inspired” by Apple, but seeing it again reminds me how brazen the the theft really is. Apple seriously has this design patented! https://t.co/YPinxJiL2h pic.twitter.com/rYqvm7iA4YSo Huawei opened a new store right next to Apple Passeig de Gràcia in Barcelona. They’re always heavily “inspired” by Apple, but seeing it again reminds me how brazen the the theft really is. Apple seriously has this design patented! https://t.co/YPinxJiL2h pic.twitter.com/rYqvm7iA4Y— Michael Steeber (@MichaelSteeber) February 26, 2020February 26, 2020
As Steeber notes, the shelving in Huawei's new store looks identical to Apple's own Avenue shelving that is used in its own stores, a design Apple has patented. The similarities from the photos above are clear to see.
But wait, there's more!
There's a pretty good walkthrough in this video where you can see even more. The lack of decorum... is... stunning https://t.co/OGKpWY6Udh pic.twitter.com/YkqjbeD7GSThere's a pretty good walkthrough in this video where you can see even more. The lack of decorum... is... stunning https://t.co/OGKpWY6Udh pic.twitter.com/YkqjbeD7GS— Michael Steeber (@MichaelSteeber) February 26, 2020February 26, 2020
The Huawei store also includes funky square stools and displays for phone cases that double as drawers, with stock of each product hidden inside, exactly like Apple. Here's an official Apple photo of the same system in its Taipei store:
And here's a photo of Apple's own square stools, which it uses in its forums:
Somehow, it gets better, because as we pointed out in the headline, these two stores are right next to each other! From Google Street View:
The paler building on the right is Apple's Passeig de Grácia store, the building on the left with the arches is now Huawei. (See below)
They say that imitation is the best form of flattery, but Huawei seems to be taking the cake a little bit here. As Steeber notes, up until recently Huawei stores were only in China, meaning that just how similar its stores are to Apple seems to have passed by relatively unnoticed. It may be that as Huawei expands its brick-and-mortar operations further afield, Apple might just have something to say about it.
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Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design.
Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple. Follow him on Twitter @stephenwarwick9