<img src="http://www.romkey.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/04/applestore_5thave3.jpg" alt="5th Ave Apple Store" title="applestore_5thave3.jpg" border="0" width="200" height="133" style="float:right; padding: 5px;"/> I don't go to physical Apple retail stores very often but this weekend in New York I needed a mini-displayport to HDMI cable, so we took a walk to the 5th Avenue glass cube Apple mothership and picked one up.
What a difference it is shopping at the Apple store versus other stores.
There are no cash registers and there are no lines at cash registers. There are Apple associates scattered throughout the stores. When you’re ready to buy something you go to them, they scan the item, swipe your credit card and email you a receipt (you can get a paper receipt if you want, but why bother?). I had the receipt in email less than a minute after the purchase.
I left the store with the cable, no bag, no printed receipt, no hassle. Though there are security personnel stationed at the entrance to the store (and there need to be, given armed robberies at Apple Stores), there’s no sign of the ubiquitous RFID alarm to finger you as a thief when you walk out without paying.
I don’t think I can adequately explain how good it feels to be treated like someone whose experience matters to Apple rather than a potential thief that the store grudgingly does business with.
More stores should try this.