updated 11:16 am EDT, Mon July 2, 2012
Layout could increase space for more visitors
Apple is testing a new layout of the Genius Bar, at least at one location, ifoAppleStore reports. A photo depicts the layout in action at an anonymous Apple Store; the main difference is that the Genius table has been rotated 90 degrees, putting it perpendicular to the back wall. This allows more people to be seated, since stools are present on both sides. The table moreover has no network or electrical connections on its surface; some cables are visible below the table, connecting to plugs in the floor.
To cope with the demands of the Geniuses themselves, "at least one" currency drawer is said to be built into the table, and equipment and supplies are stored in drawers in the wall. Instead of using Macs to handle service records, Geniuses are expected to use iPads, again helping to free up space. One sacrifice in the store though is the removal of the kids' table, which normally has iPads loaded with apps for children to play with.
Still unknown is whether or not Apple intends to use the layout in more than one outlet. It could simply be a way of coping with problems at a specific location, since not all Apple Stores have the same amount of space or traffic. The company has, however, been migrating its workers to iOS devices, and Apple Stores in general have seen growing traffic for years.