Tag - Resellers
In a follow-up to a story run earlier today about Apple expanding the number of third-party resellers of the Apple Watch, Selfridges department store in London has created an elaborate display of manmade flowers that emulate the various face options on the Apple Watch. The store has actually been one of only a handful of select resellers that have carried the Apple Watch since its April debut.
As part of an expanded push in one of its fastest-growing markets that recently saw the company advertising for a senior government manager, the iPhone maker is now in the final stages of executing a plan to increase its available resellers to around 500 outlets. There are currently around 100 resellers already on board, and the company plans to double iPhone sales in each of the next three years.
New reports indicate that Sprint has dropped a previous requirement that resellers of its network -- FreedomPop, Straight Talk, Boost Mobile, Virgin, and some others -- wait more than a year before offering support for the latest models of Android and iOS devices. The change allows the mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs) to immediately begin offering the current iPhone 6 line from Apple, the top-selling smartphone worldwide.
While the major (and smaller) official carriers of the iPhone 5 in the US have already announced that pre-orders will begin at 3:01AM ET (12:01AM PT) on Friday, September 14, several resellers are angling to get customers into their stores on the iPhone's official debut of September 21. In AT&T's case, it is making an offer to some customers who are just outside the upgrade window so they can -- for a price -- get an iPhone 5. Walmart is (slightly) discounting the contract price, and RadioShack offers a discount based on the trade-in of buyers' previous phones.
French reseller eBizcuss is getting some support in its lawsuit against Apple, says ChannelWeb. The website recently received a 4,400-word letter from an anonymous European Apple Premium Reseller, likewise complaining about product shortages. The APR also alleges, however, that resellers are suffering cash flow problems due to Apple cutting credit lines, and that Apple partners are stepping into APR territory and forcing down margins through SMB (small-to-medium business) and education deals.
The largest independent Apple retailer in France has sued the company, alleging that Apple actively engages in practices that undermine and undercut resellers while favoring its own retail stores. The complaint, which was originally reported in the French newspaper Le Figaro (and picked up by ifoAppleStore) is similar to other court cases filed against Apple be resellers in the US and other countries.
A number of Apple resellers are staging a Presidents Day sale, a collective announcement reveals. The Apple Specialist Marketing Co-op notes that 2009 will mark the first year the group has held a sale during the holiday weekend, when it is normally impossible to find any discounts on any Apple products. Apple itself typically schedules only one sale period per year, centered around Thanksgiving.
A New Zealand-based Apple reseller, MagnumMac, has recently purchased a new building for occupation. Construction has already begun on the new storefront, which will be located in the center of Auckland's Newmarket shopping district, on the corner of Broadway and Khyber Pass. The location will serve as a replacement to a previous site in Newton, for which the lease expires in December. Existing customers have raised some concerns about the area's bad parking, but are claimed to understand the appeal of such a high-profile location. MagnumMac says it hopes to model the Newmarket shop after Apple's successful US-based stores, where the customer experience is highest priority.
Select resellers are stocking a 4GB version of the new iPod nano, in spite of Apple's announced capacities, a report claims. Although the Nano is officially available only in 8 and 16GB versions, Dutch resellers HTR are said to be carrying a smaller model. A Belgian reseller, Lab9, suggests that Apple has released a limited number of 4GB players to resellers, which are generally being priced at Ä119.
Italian iPhone shoppers may be allowed to buy the device through Apple resellers, a local news site reports. Macity cites a source "informed on the facts," who claims that stores with the Apple Premium Reseller designation will be able to sell the device alongside Vodafone and Telecom Italia's locations, and Apple's one official store in the country, situated in Rome. The distribution deal is said to have been arranged between the carriers and the resellers, rather than directly through Apple.
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Apple brings iTunes Movie Trailers app to Canada
After five years, Apple has expanded its iTunes Movie Trailers app for iOS to Canada. As of Saturday, the free app allows movie buffs to see HD movie trailers for new studio and independent features, and explore some other movie-related extras such as photos, behind-the-scenes footage, or clips from upcoming films. Users can save trailers for quick access, read reviews from RottenTomatoes.com within the app, use AirPlay to send them to an Apple TV, share trailers, and peruse the top movie charts. http://apple.co/1UUKtwr
Apple expands CloudKit API, provides web interface
On Friday, Apple notified developers that it was expanding a feature of CloudKit to allow for server-to-server web service requests. "In addition to providing a web interface for users to access the same data as your app, you can now easily read and write to the CloudKit public database from a server-side process or script with a server-to-server key," Apple said in its announcement. Previously, interaction with the CloudKit public database was limited to apps and web only. http://apple.co/20h1RwP
Remote S for Tesla Apple Watch app drives car out
Developer Allen Wong has created the Remote S for Tesla app, which can be used to remotely activate the Model S electric car via an Apple Watch, and drive it a short distance. Aside from providing data about the car and some basic function controls, the unofficial app uses the manufacturer's Summon command to allow the car to turn on, exit the garage, and park near to the user's location. The app is available to purchase from the App Store for $10. http://apple.co/1PprF4t
Seagate 3TB unreliability suit expands
The Seagate 3TB class-action hard drive lawsuit has been expanded to more devices. The expanded suit, filed today, now includes Seagate's Barracuda 3TB Hard Disk Drive,¬†Desktop HDD 3TB, Backup Plus 3TB External Hard Disk¬†Drive,¬†GoFlex 3TB External Hard Disk Drive, or any other Seagate hard drive with model number ST3000DM001. The law firm, Hagens Berman, is seeking information from consumers such as time in service, purchase price, and the nature of any drive received in return from Seagate as a replacement for a failed unit. http://bit.ly/1Pc34Cq
BlackBerry Canada, Florida hit with layoffs
The BlackBerry campus has reportedly been wracked with layoffs. Sources familiar with the company's Waterloo office staffing claim that close to 35 percent of the local workforce has been laid off, with the deepest cuts being made in the BlackBerry 10 OS and hardware teams. Additionally, the state of Florida has been officially notified that the company's Sunrise facility will see 75 people fired. Enthusiast site Mobilesyrup puts the layoffs at around 1000 total. http://bit.ly/1Pc1Rep
Instagram tests multiple account support for iOS
Instagram is trialling support for multiple accounts in its iPhone app with a small number of users. The Facebook-owned photo sharing service confirmed the reports of the tests to TechCrunch, which will allow a single user to manage more than a single account within the app, transferring between two or three accounts with a few taps. It is unclear when the feature will roll out to the public, but it has previously tested it with the Android version of the app since November. http://tcrn.ch/1SPKEKh
Foxconn CEO declares Sharp deal near done
The Foxconn bid for Sharp is allegedly only waiting on specific details of the deal. Foxconn CEO Terry Gou has declared that his company has privileged negotiation rights for the Apple iPhone screen supplier, saying that "we have a consensus, the rest is a process ... I don't see a problem completing this process." Gou hopes the deal, worth up to $5.6 billion, will be formalized by the end of February. http://reut.rs/1SPEQjN