They're All Over The Place (11/16/01)
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Gee, did we just say there were three new Apple retail stores primed to open next Friday? Sorry, we should have said four. Well, actually, that's not entirely true, since we really haven't heard any reports (official or otherwise) that a fourth store will be going live on the 23rd, but sometime between yesterday and today, Apple added the Buffalo, NY Walden Galleria shop to the "Coming Soon" section on its newly-revamped list of retail locations; while no opening date is listed, we're pegging the all-important Day After Thanksgiving as a likely target.

Little birds who claim to be familiar with the Buffalo store's progress have been singing about its grand opening for months, now, but the date has been pushed forward so many times it's getting rug burns on its hinder. The last date we'd heard chirped around the compound was November 17th, though that's clearly not going to happen unless magic shoemaker elves get the store ready overnight. We therefore expect that next Friday is a reasonable guess, barring the advent of some major catastrophe like extensive flooding or a cobra infestation; however, we'd like to stress that this is a guess and only a guess-- albeit a reasonably educated one.

The way we see it, Apple obviously wants as many Apple stores open as possible throughout the full official holiday shopping season, which (by most counts) commences on the 23rd-- hence Apple's massive push to get three or four more stores launched on that day when its previous record for simultaneous grand openings was a mere two. If Apple is indeed planning on a quadruple-launch and it's successful, then there will be no fewer than twenty-one Apple stores with cash registers a-ringin' from Thanksgiving through Christmas. (Looks like that original goal of having twenty-five stores by the end of the year is well within reach.)

Of course, Apple likely has a secondary goal in attempting a four-way simultaneous grand opening; if the company can one day work its way up to five, ancient texts prophesy that the event will mark the day of the ascension of Apple's spiritual leader from "divine mortal" to full-on deity status (or, as the book puts it, "He Who Is Immense And Immortal, Master Of Destinies, Swallower of Planets, And The Guy With The Keys To The Minibar"). Sounds like Steve's playing for all the marbles. In the meantime, while four stores gets him Cosmic Zilch on the whole ascension tip, heck, at least they'll be selling stuff.


 
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The above scene was taken from the 11/16/01 episode:

November 16, 2001: The latest evidence suggests that Apple may in fact be planning on four retail grand openings next Friday. Meanwhile, iTunes 2.0.2 quietly surfaces on Apple's servers, and a viewer uncovers evidence that a super-fast new iMac is just days away...

Other scenes from that episode:

  • 3401: What's In That Package? (11/16/01)   Given what happened the last time Apple posted a new iTunes installer, we wouldn't be surprised if people were a little... shall we say, extra careful about downloading and installing new versions of that particular product...

  • 3402: Now THAT'S A New iMac (11/16/01)   Slow news day? Ha! Sure, to the untrained eye, things may seem a little quiet in the Mac world right about now, but that's because only a true professional can spot the subtle plot twists. While official Mac news sites are currently falling back on such yawnworthy tactics as regurgitating corporate press releases and noting every single new software update under the sun, our keen eye for drama brings you something far more engaging...

Or view the entire episode as originally broadcast...

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