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Today Marks the 15th Anniversary of Apple's First Two Retail Stores

Today marks 15 years since the first two Apple retail stores opened on May 19, 2001 in Tysons Corner, Virginia and Glendale, California. The locations welcomed over 7,700 people and combined to sell $599,000 worth of merchandise during their first two-day weekend. Apple opened 25 more stores by year's end.

The retail initiative was spearheaded by Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, who recognized the need for a better customer experience than provided by third-party retailers such as Circuit City. Jobs was helped by a retail team led by former Target vice president of merchandising Ron Johnson and Gap CEO Millard Drexler.

Steve Jobs introduces the Apple Store in Tysons Corner, Virginia

While some critics believed that Apple retail stores would be a resounding failure, especially given the dot-com collapse, the concept proved to be highly profitable and successful. Apple Stores now attract over 1 million customers worldwide per day and often generate the highest sales-per-square-foot of any U.S. retailer.

The first Apple Store outside of the U.S. opened on November 30, 2003 in Tokyo, Japan, and the company now operates over 475 stores in the U.S., U.K., Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, and United Arab Emirates.

marseille_hero
Apple's latest retail store opened in Marseille, France on May 14

Under the leadership of Angela Ahrendts, Apple has been aggressively expanding its retail footprint in China, its second largest market by revenue, while opening and renovating several stores in Brussels, Cupertino, Dubai, London, Memphis, and other cities with Jony Ive-inspired next-generation designs since 2015.
Read our Apple Stores roundup to learn more and keep track of new, renovated, upcoming, and rumored stores around the world.

Related Roundup: Apple Stores


Top Rated Comments

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11 months ago
It's times like this you realize how much Apple did in 2001-2011 and how little Apple has done over the past 5 years.
Rating: 52 Votes
11 months ago
Both great and sad to see Steve. Wish he had taken his health more seriously earlier. He might still be around.
Rating: 35 Votes
11 months ago

You mean like the new MacPro, the apple watch, 4k and 5k iMacs, retina phones, Retina MacBook Pros, and the incredibly thin Retina Macbook


iPad was 2010. Firmly in the range I said they did innovate.

new MacPro is a joke. First they've only released one version in the 5 year time of Timmy and where the original mac pro was a versatile powerhouse for any high end user, the new one is a crippled little underpowered box for a small niche market. It's no wonder it flopped so badly they won't even bother with a spec bump.

4k and 5k iMacs = nice screens not made by Apple bolted to underpowered computer hardware that doesn't come close to being able to power the screens. My favourite was the MacWorld article gushing about the new 5k iMac by saying it's almost as powerful as the old model. Like Apple did good by not downgrading performance too much.

Retina phone was 2010. Also in the pre-Timmy era. Since then Android has far surpassed iPhone both in resolution and screen tech.

rMBP doesn't have the computing power to drive the screens. Also you get soldered ram, non-replaceable battery, and no standard drive bay.

and the rMB is a complete monument to absolute stupidity that is Timmy. It's thin. But it has less computing performance than an entry level mac from 2010. It has a keyboard that should be outlawed as a torture instrument. It should not exist and only serves to make Apple and Timmy a laughing stock among non-koolaid drinkers.

Also, it's funny you didn't even bother mentioning the watches. Those new bands are pretty innovative. And rose gold alone should keep Apple going..
Rating: 31 Votes
11 months ago

It's times like this you realize how much Apple did in 2001-2011 and how little Apple has done over the past 5 years.

You mean like the new MacPro, the apple watch, 4k and 5k iMacs, [s]retina phones[/s], Retina MacBook Pros, and the incredibly thin Retina Macbook

Edit: Removed the iPad and crossed out the iPhone, as I was incorrect on the timing
Rating: 27 Votes
11 months ago

You mean like the new MacPro, the apple watch, 4k and 5k iMacs, retina phones, Retina MacBook Pros, and the incredibly thin Retina Macbook


So we should applaud them for updating their product lines?
Rating: 27 Votes
11 months ago

It's times like this you realize how much Apple did in 2001-2011 and how little Apple has done over the past 5 years.


Enough of this. It seems that every article is just a springboard for Apple hate.

Believe it or not, Apple engineers and many others (heck, maybe even Tim Cook from time to time) browse MR. MR themselves can confirm this, with traffic coming directly from Cupertino, and showing as being from newer or unreleased OS X/iOS builds.

And yet at every single tenuous opportunity, all they'll see is rubbish like this where it's not called for. Ironically enough, the actual valid criticisms for how Apple can genuinely improve will be completely lost. They'll shrug their shoulders and think "well, you guys will never be happy no matter what we do."
Rating: 22 Votes
11 months ago

You mean like the new MacPro, the apple watch, 4k and 5k iMacs, [S]retina phones[/S], Retina MacBook Pros, and the incredibly thin Retina Macbook

Edit: Removed the iPad and crossed out the iPhone, as I was incorrect on the timing


Everyone always leaves out the chips. That is one of the most impressive things Apple has done. To have the best mobile chip is a huge advantage. Especially when you consider that a mobile CPU is probably the most important thing as software continues to take over markets. They didn't start this process in the last five years, but the improvements, especially in the last two years has been amazing.
Rating: 13 Votes
11 months ago

You mean like the new MacPro, the apple watch, 4k and 5k iMacs, [S]retina phones[/S], Retina MacBook Pros, and the incredibly thin Retina Macbook

Edit: Removed the iPad and crossed out the iPhone, as I was incorrect on the timing


It's sad how the people you responded to and many others take things for granted and have such rose tinted glasses. It was probably the same ones complaining about how bad Apple was for not having 3rd party apps or 3G on the OG iPhone. Or no Cut/Copy/Paste etc. Or how the iPad is just a blown up iPad and offered nothing new. I guess it'll never change, I remember the same negativity when the iPod came out, people claiming Apple had lost all hope and were doomed.

To add to (and duplicate some of) your list some things they've released since 2011 that have been positive for me:

- TouchID - not much to say except awesome.
- A new line of iPads in 2 sizes with the addition of a highly regarded stylus. This product has made the biggest change to my working life in the last 5 years and probably ever (completely ditched paper - all notes now taken digitally).
- New True Tone display on iPad Pro 9.7" - massive difference when using iPad outdoors (hope this tech filters to other iOS devices).
- Starting with the A7 moved A-series chip design in-house and transitioned to to 64-bit for their iOS devices. The latest releases the A9 and A9X which have been excellent in performance terms.
- iPhone with 3D Touch - something else which has made working life quicker (can get through dozens of emails in a much smaller amount of time).
- Research Kit: fingers crossed this leads to some good.
- A completely new MacBook line (Retina 2015), introduces several firsts for Apple - USB-C, new Butterfly mechanism keyboard, fanless, custom shaped battery, individual LED backlit keys (as opposed to an array previously), Force Touch trackpad.
- The 2105 MacBook (Retina) has also just received an internal upgrade with some decent performance boosts.
- A mapping service.
- A new Apple TV with a much requested App Store.
- A new programming language: Swift.
- Roll-out of Apple Pay.
- In the last year or so released 2 operating system updates (OS X 10.11, iOS 9) and 2 new Operating systems (watchOS and tvOS) - which have been pretty rock solid for me.
- Apple Watch which has made a big difference to my fitness (no more phone carried when on runs, easy logging of sets and reps, ability to buy drinks whilst running/cycling without cash etc.).

Plenty of innovation there. Apple are not perfect, never were and never will be. But they have one very happy customer here with a lot of their recent products providing nice incentives to upgrade over older alternatives.
Rating: 12 Votes
11 months ago
They've come a long way...
Rating: 11 Votes
11 months ago
Looking at that video clip, I'm reminded of how well Steve Jobs was for the image of the company, and also striving to make it better. I remember one of his last public appearances in front of Cupertino's city board explaining to them how he wanted to build a huge circular building with nothing but glass windows and doors on the outside.

Even if it's not technology related, such as an Apple Store or a new building on a separate campus, Steve always knew how to excite the masses. Steve wasn't perfect, nobody is, but Tim isn't even a good CEO, especially compared to what Steve was. Where's Tim's idea of an exceptional campus, or a great new product nobody's seen before? Where is the innovation in the Apple Store?
Rating: 11 Votes

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