O'Grady's PowerPage » retail

Rumor: Apple to begin offering rewards for non-iPhone trade-ins

Posted by:
Date: Tuesday, March 17th, 2015, 08:47
Category: iPhone, retail, Rumor


There’s now a reward system in place for turning non-iPhone smartphones in to Apple.

Sources have stated that Apple is planning to add Android, BlackBerry and Windows Phone handsets to the list of acceptable trade-ins for its Reuse and Recycling Program, which exchanges used hardware for Apple Store gift cards.

Apple is apparently preparing to expand its Reuse and Recycling Program to include non-iOS handsets, including hardware running iOS nemesis Android.

Under Apple’s current program, first launched in 2011, iPhone users can nab an Apple Store gift card worth up to US$175 for a fully functional 64GB iPhone 5s. The company will reportedly offer similar deals for smartphones running Android, BlackBerry and Windows Phone operating systems, but specific hardware grading criteria is unknown.


Apple ID errors end, lost sales for App Store, iTunes Store estimated around $25 million

Posted by:
Date: Thursday, March 12th, 2015, 09:58
Category: App Store, iTunes Music Store, iTunes Store, News, retail, Software


The Great Apple ID Snafu of 2015 is over.

And it apparently cost Apple about US$25 million in lost sales revenue.

Over the course of a 12-hour outage between Tuesday and Wednesday, Apple’s iTunes Store and App Store were down due to a DNS error. During this time, users couldn’t purchase apps, songs, movies or books. It took Apple 12 hours to get their systems up and running again, costing the company about US$25 million in lost sales.


Select Marriott Hotels, Etsy to begin accepting Apple Pay in 2015

Posted by:
Date: Tuesday, March 10th, 2015, 08:01
Category: iOS, iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, News, retail, Software


This summer, you’ll be able to use Apple Pay at certain Marriott hotels in the U.S.

In addition, Marriott Rewards members will be able to load their Rewards benefits via co-branded credit cards into Apple Pay.

The first batch of Marriott hotels to get Apple Pay include The Ritz-Carlton New York at Central Park, The Ritz-Carlton Washington D.C., EDITION Miami, JW Marriott Chicago, Renaissance New York Times Square Hotel, San Francisco Marriott Marquis, San Francisco Airport Marriott Waterfront, New York Marriott Downtown, San Jose Marriott, Courtyard Chicago Downtown/Magnificent Mile, Courtyard Los Angeles L.A. Live and Residence Inn Los Angeles L.A. Live.


Apple Watch announced, device to be available for pre-order on April 10th, will be in stores come April 24th

Posted by:
Date: Monday, March 9th, 2015, 15:40
Category: Hardware, News, retail, Wearables


And now, the big kahuna.

On Monday, Apple announced the Apple Watch, which will become available for pre-order on April 10.

The wearable device ranges from US$249 with a smaller 38mm watch band and goes for US$399 with a 42mm watch band. The Sport model features a stainless steel alloy that’s apparently 80 percent harder than normal stainless steel, leaps up to US$549 for the 38mm model with Apple’s most pedestrian wrist band, and tops out at US$1,049 for 38mm versions with high-end fashion bracelets—like the Space Black Stainless Steel Link version.

For those of you who are made of money, an 18K gold version starts at just US$10,000. This can go up to US$17,000 with a Yellow Gold model with a Bright Red Modern Buckle

You’ll only be able to buy the Edition models at select retail stores.


Rumor: AppleCare now offering support for Beats Music products, accepting Apple Pay for business clients

Posted by:
Date: Friday, March 6th, 2015, 08:28
Category: retail, Rumor


As of Thursday, AppleCare has begun providing support for Beats Music customers as well as accepting Apple Pay for payment. Prior to this, support for Beats’ customers went through an alternate service. According to sources, AppleCare staff are now taking Apple Pay as a form of compensation.

Support for the Beats music products has been slowly integrated into Apple’s system since the company’s purchase of Beats Electronics and Beats Music for US$3 billion in 2014.

Apple adds 17 more banks and credit unions to list of supported Apple Pay institutions

Posted by:
Date: Tuesday, March 3rd, 2015, 08:53
Category: Finance, News, retail, Software


Apple recently announced that more than a dozen new banks and credit unions have added support for Apple Pay, adding to the 98+ banks and institutions that have come on board with the payment plan.

The new banks and institutions are as follows:

Affinity Plus Federal Credit Union

American Airlines Credit Union

Bank of Hawaii

Baxter Credit Union

Rumor: Apple to overhaul Genius Bar operating procedures as early as March 9th

Posted by:
Date: Wednesday, February 25th, 2015, 12:11
Category: retail, Rumor


Your Genius Bar experience could be changing as soon as next month.

According to the rumor mill, Apple Retail is reportedly in the process of overhauling its Genius Bar experience. In a bid to better serve customers, starting from the week of March 9, a new initiative dubbed “Concierge” will be rolled out to replace walk-in appointments. The program involves Apple Store employees using an algorithm-driven iPad app to provide priority-assessed wait times for a customer’s query.


Samsung acquires LoopPay, looks to become an Apple Pay competitor

Posted by:
Date: Thursday, February 19th, 2015, 05:53
Category: Finance, News, retail


It never hurts to be part of the payment infrastructure.

Only two months after rumors surfaced that Samsung was considering becoming an Apple Pay competitor, the South Korean conglomerate has reportedly acquired mobile payments startup LoopPay to bolster its efforts.

Samsung began talks with LoopPay in December to integrate the latter’s magnetic payment technology into next-generation Galaxy devices. That partnership has apparently turned into an acquisition, as noted by Re/code and the Wall Street Journal.


Lumoid to allow customers to rent Apple Watch before buying it

Posted by:
Date: Thursday, February 5th, 2015, 11:56
Category: News, retail, Wearables


If you’re on the fence and hesitant about buying an Apple Watch, you might be able to rent one first.

A gadget rental outfit called Lumoid plans to rent Apple Watches as part of its wearable rental program for consumers, said, Aarthi Ramamurthy, the company’s founder and CEO.

Lumoid will roll out a waiting list on its website later this week for consumers looking to get their hands on the device when it begins shipping in April.

Although details about the Apple Watch are still emerging, pricing rumors have the watch retailing for between US$349 for the Sport model and US$5,000 for the gold edition.

“Before breaking the bank on the smartwatch, consumers should be able to try it out,” Ramamurthy said.


Rumor: Apple to adopt jewelry store protocols, increase security for gold Apple Watch sales

Posted by:
Date: Monday, February 2nd, 2015, 08:27
Category: Hardware, retail, Rumor, Wearables


With the Apple Watch shipping in April, Apple may be changing some of its retail methods to match the product.

According to sources, Apple is planning several new features for its retail stores to support the Gold Watch Edition of the device. As reported several months ago, Apple is planning on allowing customers to actually try on the watches and test out different band styles inside of stores. With the high-expected price tag of the gold watch models, Apple will also step up its security features for stores.

Over on 9to5Mac, there’s the following:

Apple will outfit its official retail stores with safes to house the more expensive, gold “Edition” variants of the upcoming Apple Watch. The safes will likely be used to carry both to-be-sold inventory as well as to store demo units from the show floor overnight. The custom-designed safes will be outfitted with Apple Watch MagSafe chargers in order to keep the demo units charged up and ready to go for the next day of business. Apple has already begun installing the safes in some stores ahead of the Apple Watch’s expected release in April…