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Apple Retail Closely Monitoring Employee Usage of iOS 7, Forbids In-Store Demos for Customers

ios_7_iconApple is carefully monitoring the way that its retail workers are using iOS 7, reports 9to5Mac. Both retail store managers and Apple's Human Resources team have been contacting employees that are found using iOS 7 to ensure that the beta software was installed through official Developer channels.

Apple's retail workers are only authorized to install iOS 7 if they are members of the iOS Developer Program or part of an internal testing project. Employees are not allowed to sign up for a developer account and share the iOS 7 beta with coworkers, as noted in a warning letter that Apple sent out to some retail employees.
Am I allowed to load and use iOS beta software on my devices? Not unless you are a member of the iOS Developer Program, or have been explicitly authorized by management to participate in the development or testing of internal Apple applications as part of an official Apple project.

You may not load iOS beta software onto any other person's iOS device. Employees are not authorized to receive iOS beta software from any third parties, even if those third parties are iOS Developer Program members.
Employees have also been forbidden from showing the iOS 7 beta to Apple Store customers. According to retail workers who spoke to 9to5Mac, Apple is "super strict" about all iOS 7 usage in store. "We could get fired for showing a customer iOS 7 on our phones because of the Apple Developer NDA agreement," said one employee.

Customers who bring in malfunctioning phones running iOS 7 will not be able to have them serviced in store either, as Apple has implemented guidelines preventing Geniuses from working on phones running the beta software.

Apple routinely uses its retail employees to test and improve software. Last year, Apple relied on its workers to help improve its Maps app, and this year, certain employees have been given access to OS X Mavericks for beta testing purposes.

iOS 7, which offers a radical design overhaul along with a number of performance enhancements, is currently only available to developers. The final version of the software is expected to be released this fall alongside the next generation iPhone.

Related roundup: iOS 7

Top Rated Comments

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15 months ago

It can't be that big of a deal to show a customer a preview of things to come.


If it's buggy and can lead to negative impressions, you bet it can.
Rating: 26 Votes
15 months ago
Totally understandable. Otherwise they'd probably have a jailbreak bar, too..
Rating: 15 Votes
15 months ago
As a former Apple store employee, I perfectly understand Apple's stance here. iOS 7 is for developer testing. It is inappropriate to demo it as a product. It also creates an inconsistent customer experience as any demo would not be widely available. You'd end up running around the store looking for your one employee friend who has it on his phone. Then you find out he is on lunch break and the customer gets pissy that they can't see iOS 7 and will say, "Well then I guess Apple isn't interested in my business." Or "Another employee showed me iOS 7, why can't you?!" You have no idea how pissy customers can be.
Rating: 9 Votes
15 months ago

Its probably news to you, but there is such a thing as objectively bad design, and iOS 7 is reflective of such. Just because something is popular does not mean its quality.

If Ive redesigned the Coke cans, they'd look like this:

Image (http://i.huffpost.com/gen/1190020/original.jpg)

And you'd probably still praise it.


This is not the thread to go off on a rant about how bad ios7 design is. The article has nothing to do with that. Go explore the million threads on that topic and get into arguments there.
Rating: 9 Votes
15 months ago
What's the point? Everyone already knows at this point what it looks like and it's features.
Rating: 8 Votes
15 months ago

This seems heavy handed and silly.

What wrong with showing someone a little ios 7. Are they afraid it's so bad that people will run to android? Most people who would be interested in a sneak peek would be fully aware it is beta and will have glitches and may change before the final release.

I think it would bring more traffic to the stores and generate some excitement.


Part of the problem is, there are some people who don't know or realize what BETA is. If someone walks in off the street, sees iOS7 on a phone, tries it and finds parts of it buggy, etc...they could think iOS7 is a buggy piece of crap.
Rating: 8 Votes
15 months ago

Smart move. They don't want customers to see the elementary school Fisher Price iOS and go "ohhh, thats the new iOS? I'll, uhh, you can..hmmm....Oh is that a Microsoft Store?"


Are you serious?

This stuff wasn't even funny on June 10.
Rating: 8 Votes
15 months ago

It can't be that big of a deal to show a customer a preview of things to come.


When that preview is not fully tested and complete, yes there is.

Imagine if, while I was showing you this cool new feature of iOS 7, my phone crashed. Not just the app but the whole phone. And what if it was a huge crash that wouldn't turn back on right away for some reason.

You aren't likely to think "well it's beta software that kind of thing happens" but rather "that is some crappy software. I'm better off going and getting a Samsung".

Not to mention the issues of employees trying to get service on their phones. They generally know enough to do things like DFU to iOS 6 or try to and act like they never put iOS 7 on it to get around the 'no service' rules. That's not fair to customers who might have a legit issue that needs a swap but some rule bending employee lied their way until that unit and it was the last one in store.

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And yet Apple has iOS 7 emblazoned all over the front page of its web site. It's kind of tempting and a mixed message.


Apple showing carefully selected images of a software is NOT the same as an active demo.

These rules are not new, nor is the monitoring in all likelihood. MR is just hit whoring with implications that this is something out of the norm.

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Apple should clearly state before installing the software that you won't be able to receive genius bar service. Better hope your lightning connector isn't the first thing to malfunction.


Guess you aren't a developer, because it is stated in the T&C very clearly

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As a developer, why shouldn't Apple cover my device under the same warranty as everyone else's?


Because you loaded preview software that is known to be incomplete and buggy at your own risk.

You agreed to these terms so if you have an issue with it then you should stop loading the software until it is released to the public and take your changes on negative reviews because your update wasn't ready before release.
Rating: 7 Votes
15 months ago

Its probably news to you, but there is such a thing as objectively bad design, and iOS 7 is reflective of such. Just because something is popular does not mean its quality.

If Ive redesigned the Coke cans, they'd look like this:

Image (http://i.huffpost.com/gen/1190020/original.jpg)

And you'd probably still praise it.


First of all, you're comparing a mock-up of a Coke can with an entire operating system. I might be wrong, but a Coke can serves a different purpose than an operating system. A Coke can (being a physical object) is more like hardware, and Ive has been designing hardware for far longer than he has been designing software. So if you really think Ive would design a Coke can like that, why hasn't he designed an iPhone or iPad that looks like that? I can't believe you took a picture from a parody website and tried to present it as part of a serious post.

Second, an operating system like iOS 7 has many different facets with many different color schemes. The can you presented is a single object with one color gradient. A color gradient that is absolutely terrible for any sort of physical object. The closest thing I could find in iOS 7 that matches the color scheme of that Coke can is the iTunes Store app. And it is one solitary icon out of dozens of them. A small percentage of the design of the OS.

Regarding this "objectively bad design" thing... I'm sorry, but design is never objective. I reserve the right to like and dislike what I want to like and dislike regardless of what other people say. For example, people have been cheering Game Center's new look, but I think the new design is pretty crappy. I can dislike that while still liking other parts of iOS 7. And you can dislike all of iOS 7! But don't try to tell me that my opinion is wrong because someone somewhere decided that something should be a certain way.
Rating: 7 Votes
15 months ago

Apple should clearly state before installing the software that you won't be able to receive genius bar service. Better hope your lightning connector isn't the first thing to malfunction.


I went into the App Store this weekend with a cracked screen and they replaced my phone even though it had iOS7. Both of the employees asked me how I liked iOS7. I understand them not wanting to fix possible software problems in iOS7, but they will fix hardware issues.
Rating: 6 Votes

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