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Apple Changes Stores In Time For Holiday Shopping

Apple makes subtle changes to make holiday shopping faster

By Scott Budman
|  Wednesday, Nov 21, 2012  |  Updated 3:16 PM PDT
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    If you walk into an Apple store to do some holiday shopping - and we guess about a trillion of you will - you'll notice a couple of subtle changes. And no, we're not talking about the fact that all those retail helpers are now wearing red.

    First off, just to the left (at least, to the left when you walk into the Los Gatos Apple store), you'll see something called the "Express Shopping" table.

    It's packed with iPods, iPads, and iPhones, all waiting for you to grab, scan your credit card, and go. No need to walk to the back of the store. Apple workers have hand held scanners. No need for a receipt. That will be emailed to you.

    It's a faster shopping experience from a company that has been consistently working on making the buying process faster.

    Now, if you know what you want, you won't have to wade through the masses, or wait for someone in a (now red) Apple shirt to become free.

    If you have the Apple store app on your iPhone, you can also avoid most of the wait.

    You may have already used this to scan your way to a quick purchase; you can now also email gift cards on the go - something that makes sense in the mobile world.

    The physical changes are subtle. We realize most of you are probably waiting for the traditional Apple email that goes out soon, alerting shoppers of special discounts and store hours.

    While we got a peek into the retail part of things (see photos upper left), we, too, will have to wait for the email.

    Scott will be covering Black Friday. He’s on Twitter: @scottbudman

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