I was in the Apple Store on Park Avenue last Wednesday, the day of the announcement of Apple's partnership with Deutsche Telekom. This plus the $1.4 for 1 Euro exchange rate drew at least 1,000 people into this largest of Apple retail stores. A sweeping view of the store gives one the impression that there is more of a trade show going on than sales being transacted. People are talking, testing, laughing, calling their friends over, surfing the web. There is little product in sight and the sales assistants mainly provide info and advice on products. I've never had a big-box type of sales pitch in any Apple Store. This reminds me of my friend JP's obsevation (his blog is confusedofcalcutta.com) that first we have Conversation, then Relationship, then Transaction. BTW, the 10 check-out registers at this Apple Store were occupied, with a long queue, for the entire hour that I was there.
BTW2 - Apple stock at $149.00 today; up from $86 on the day in February when the phone was announced. 10 shares purchased at announcement would have paid, with the profits, for the iPhone and a lunch to celebrate.
BTW3 - my retail clients ask about Web 2.0. I tell them that I've been in Apple Stores in Durham (NC), San Francisco, San Antonio, Chicago, and New York. The experience is the same: conversation, relationship, transaction and meshes perfectly with the experience of iTunes and the devices themselves. There is presently no better model. cperrien