We heard a report earlier this year that Tim Cook is looking to increase the number of iPhones sold at Apple’s retail stores. The premise of this idea is because Cook believes that the iPhone is a “gateway” product, and once customers can see how well the phone syncs up with other Apple products, like Mac computers demonstrated at the retail store, customers could then be persuaded to buy additional products as well. While it definitely sounds like a good idea and a smart move, one analyst (via AllThingsD) thinks that it might be harder to accomplish that than Cook thinks.
One of the challenges that Apple faces is the number of retail stores they own in the US, compared to third-party retail outlets. As it stands there are around 250 Apple stores in the US, compared to the 10,000 or so third-party retail outlets, and the concern is whether Apple can drastically ramp up the sales of the iPhone via its retail stores, which are typically very busy, without having to hire more staff or open more locations, both of which will cost Apple more money. In any case we guess only time will tell to see if Cook will be able to successfully put this plan into motion.