One thing is difficult in the Apple Store – buying stuff
I went to an Apple Store today to buy an iPod Nano but struck surprising difficulties.
Apple Stores have gained a good reputation for bringing and keeping people in the Apple fold. There are knowledgeable people there who will help you be comfortable with your purchase, assist with problems. You can even make appointments online, attend classes and all sorts of neat stuff.
What is more difficult is trying to buy something. I knew exactly what I wanted and had money ready. All the focus seemed to be on waiting for a personal shopper, specialist or genius (since I hadn’t made an appointment), but I didn’t need or want to wait and have a conversation with an Apple staffer.
Eventually and with some persistence I found someone who understood the concept of exchanging money for goods or services. I got my shiny new Nano with camera and FM radio – but a sub-5 minute transaction took 25 minutes at what was supposedly a slow time (10am on Monday).
Some Apple Stores have an express purchase counter – seems to me they all need one to handle the low-overhead ‘grab, pay, go’ customers.
One thing is for sure, the coming Microsoft Stores will make it easier and faster to buy products quickly – one thing Microsoft knows is parting money from the public.
Instead of the ‘Genius Bar’ perhaps Microsoft will have the ‘Excuse Enclave’ where specially trained people will be armed with a range of excuses for problems – just some are:
- That’s fixed in Windows 7
- That will be fixed in the next Office
- The drivers are faulty, check with the manufacturer
- You need Microsoft server software to make that feature work
- Errrr, that should work ……