… Or perhaps Apple Doesn’t Get It (I’m So Confused)

I’ve met lots of interesting people over the last year and Matt Haverkamp is one of them.  Matt pens an excellent blog called The Digital Perm.  Yesterday, he posted a story about Apple banning MySpace access in their stores.  According to a post on originally on 901am.com, Apple made the following statement confirming the move:

“Nearly 2 million people visit Apple stores every week. We want to provide everyone a chance to test-drive a Mac, so we are no longer offering access to MySpace in our stores,” a statement from Apple said.

An Apple store employee told CNET that “MySpace is a big issue for the Apple stores because people come in, Photobooth themselves (using Macs’ built-in webcams), then stick their picture up on their MySpace account and loiter at machines for hours.”

I recently wrote about how brand engagement in Apple stores citing the way the encourage youth to spend time there playing with stuff like Photobooth.  Now they want to kill that?? 

This is bizarre behavior from Apple. One of the biggest reasons for their remarkable success is that they openly encourage you to come in and spend time with their products. Becoming a “destination” is the holy grail for retailers and this move feels contrary to that goal. I guess you can have too much of a bad thing if people come in and occupy all the Macs for hours. Makes it pretty hard to show the product to new customers. Still, as a CE retail veteran, that’s a problem that I would love to have.

2 comments so far

  1. Matt Haverkamp on

    Thanks for the link love Doug.

    I can understand where they are coming from to a certain degree. At Abercrombie and Fitch, I can remember all the teenagers “loitering” around ripping up my nice piles of sweaters, tees and polos.

    But I could never kick them out. They made the store what it was.

    Definitely bizarre.

  2. irishsof on

    Seems to me like they should have considered a 3rd option – limiting time on certain websites. Doesn’t the technology exist to do that? If not, maybe limit the time on the machines and require a store employee to access a machine again?

    I can see both sides of the argument here, and I’m not sure which I agree with, though I’d tend to think that allowing visitors (teens especially) to loiter and use the product on websites that they use is going to go a long way in establishing brand loyalty. Especially among teens who may be headed to college and are going to need a computer.


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