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Old Nov 24, 2012, 09:40 AM   #1
joshtheburrito
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Strange experience at the Apple Store.

WARNING, long winded post


Today I decided to buy myself an early Christmas gift for myself. I decided on the iPad mini with AT&T LTE.

I proceeded to walk into the apple store closest to me and the only one they had was a 32GB wifi model.

I then called 3 Target's, a Wal-mart, and 2 Best Buy's to no avail. They either had 64GB versions available or none at all.

Feeling that I had waited to long and had let the other holiday shoppers get ahead of me, I decided to call one more apple store that is a 35 minute drive. The man on the phone said he had plenty of iPad mini's with LTE available.

I rushed over to the store to snatch one up for myself. When I arrived in the store, the greeter asked me if I needed help. I told him that I was there to pick up an iPad mini. Then, a lady behind him told him that they were out of iPad mini's!

I was pretty pissed off considering I drove a half an hour to a store to find that the guy on the phone lied. I then started to get angry and told him what the man on the phone told me. He said that they don't have any iPad mini's at all, wifi or 4g. I then told him to get a store manager, when he left to go grab the manager, I see a table behind where he was standing. On the table was all of the apple gadgets: iPads, iPods, iPhones, and of course, 3 rows of iPad mini's?

After about 10 minutes of waiting for the manager, I asked a salesman why I couldn't buy the iPad mini's from the table. He then looked at me and asked me which one I wanted. He said that they had plenty of iPad mini's in stock and that the table is just something that they set up for the holiday shopping season to make it easier for customers.

He then tells me to wait because he is going to run an iPad from the back. I finally got my iPad in my hands and I was so happy that I didn't really think to ask him why he had to run one from the back if they had plenty at the table which people were buying. I just felt that it was a weird thing that he did.

Well, sorry for the long winded post, but I have never had an experience at an apple store that strange. It seemed that the associates didn't know much and the manager was scared to talk to me. It was worth it though, this iPad mini is awesome! I'm glad I returned my iPad 4 I bought a couple of weeks ago for this! One thing I don't like is the keyboard in landscape view. Right now I am typing this post via portrait mode and it's very easy. Once I go to landscape, I find that I can't do thumb typing because it's too big and I can't do regular touch typing because it is too small.
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Old Nov 24, 2012, 09:46 AM   #2
aziatiklover
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So they have/had plenty in stock or right behind the specialist counter yet he tells you they were all out of ipad mini? Wtf was he thinking?
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Old Nov 24, 2012, 09:55 AM   #3
ChrisMan287
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Lesson number two: Don't get high on your own supply.
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Old Nov 24, 2012, 10:20 AM   #4
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Odd
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Old Nov 24, 2012, 10:39 AM   #5
joshtheburrito
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Originally Posted by aziatiklover View Post
So they have/had plenty in stock or right behind the specialist counter yet he tells you they were all out of ipad mini? Wtf was he thinking?
That's weird enough. That doesn't include the fact that after 15-20 mins at the store, I never saw the manager or the original guy again.
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Old Nov 24, 2012, 10:53 AM   #6
Moongrass
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Clearly, the "employees" you spoke to were actually thieves in the middle of robbing the place, and the real employees were tied up in the back room. You should have become suspicious when they didn't charge you for the iPad. >_>
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Old Nov 24, 2012, 10:57 AM   #7
aziatiklover
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Originally Posted by joshtheburrito View Post
That's weird enough. That doesn't include the fact that after 15-20 mins at the store, I never saw the manager or the original guy again.
What a weird experience! Man I would have wait or look for that employee just to see why would he says/does such a thing when there are plenty of ipad minis behind him lol. Good thing you caught them stock up at the table!
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Old Nov 24, 2012, 11:01 AM   #8
yeah
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At least you got your iPad Mini
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Old Nov 24, 2012, 12:23 PM   #9
joshtheburrito
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Originally Posted by aziatiklover View Post
What a weird experience! Man I would have wait or look for that employee just to see why would he says/does such a thing when there are plenty of ipad minis behind him lol. Good thing you caught them stock up at the table!
Yeah, but I didn't feel like waiting another 10 mins. I just wanted to go home and play with my new ipad!

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Quote:
Originally Posted by yeah View Post
At least you got your iPad Mini
That's all that matters. Lol
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Old Nov 24, 2012, 12:28 PM   #10
GoGo1108
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I witnessed a similar "weird" experience in my apple store the other day. As a result, I'll shop for Apple products elsewhere.

I was shopping for some accessories when I overheard another customer tell an associate that he wanted to buy a white 32 gb wifi mini. The associate immediately told him that they didn't have any minis in stock but to hang on for a second.

A second associate came up to the guy and said "I understand you want a mini? Unfortunately we don't have any instock, but wait here a minute."

Finally a third associate approached him and said that they were all out of minis but you can order online after 10pm if you want one right away.

Why the hell did that conversation have to drag on through 3 employees? Do they hate telling customers no or were they contemplating giving him somebody else's mini? Rubbed me the wrong way and I won't be back to an apple store anytime soon.
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Old Nov 24, 2012, 12:32 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by GoGo1108 View Post
Why the hell did that conversation have to drag on through 3 employees? Do they hate telling customers no or were they contemplating giving him somebody else's mini? Rubbed me the wrong way and I won't be back to an apple store anytime soon.
I take it you've never worked in retail? Employees hands are so tied that only supervisors or managers can give the go ahead.
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Old Nov 24, 2012, 12:43 PM   #12
GoGo1108
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Originally Posted by NT1440 View Post
I take it you've never worked in retail? Employees hands are so tied that only supervisors or managers can give the go ahead.
No one gave the go ahead for anything. One "sorry we are all out" would have been completely sufficient. If you don't have any instock you don't have any instock...unless apple store managers can make products simple appear out of thin air.
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Old Nov 24, 2012, 12:47 PM   #13
NT1440
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Originally Posted by GoGo1108 View Post
No one gave the go ahead for anything. One "sorry we are all out" would have been completely sufficient. If you don't have any instock you don't have any instock...unless apple store managers can make products simple appear out of thin air.
Or, an employee goes to the back to check their inventory systems (which clearly are not available on those wooden tables) and while they were gone other employees made contact with you.

Do you know how much trouble people get in in in the retail world for giving a customer the wrong information resulting in a bad experience? Its always way better for the employee to be safe than sorry.

It's not a mystery.
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Old Nov 24, 2012, 01:04 PM   #14
EMAN19
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When I was frantically looking for an iPad mini I had a similar experience. I called the 5th Ave. Apple Store here in NY at 8AM and spoke with a guy who said they had just received a shipment. I get there 45 minutes later and I'm told by some girl that they hadn't had any Minis in stock for a day and a half. She was rude to me too.

----------

I have a feeling some of the Apple Stores were hoarding their stock of iPad minis. The whole situation was very weird. I would have different associates telling me different things too.
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Old Nov 24, 2012, 01:06 PM   #15
GoGo1108
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Originally Posted by NT1440 View Post
Or, an employee goes to the back to check their inventory systems (which clearly are not available on those wooden tables) and while they were gone other employees made contact with you.

Do you know how much trouble people get in in in the retail world for giving a customer the wrong information resulting in a bad experience? Its always way better for the employee to be safe than sorry.

It's not a mystery.
Clearly you had to be there as this isn't translating well for you. Each of the employees was sent by the previous employee. None of the conversations started with "how can I help you" but rather with I "understand you want to purchase a mini". Maybe that's normal happenstance in the retailers you visit, but I've never experienced anything like that. A simple yes/no from one employee and then we both move on with our lives.
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Old Nov 24, 2012, 01:12 PM   #16
joshtheburrito
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Originally Posted by GoGo1108 View Post
Clearly you had to be there as this isn't translating well for you. Each of the employees was sent by the previous employee. None of the conversations started with "how can I help you" but rather with I "understand you want to purchase a mini". Maybe that's normal happenstance in the retailers you visit, but I've never experienced anything like that. A simple yes/no from one employee and then we both move on with our lives.
That is very strange.
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Old Nov 24, 2012, 01:33 PM   #17
garyp609
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I had the identical experience. I was told they didn't have any in stock at all. The employee showed me the inventory system that had all the minis greyed out. They also had 3 rows of minis on a table called express checkout. When I asked about buying one they just reached behind the table and found me one. That was right after "we don't have any"
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Old Nov 24, 2012, 01:38 PM   #18
CandyNJ66
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I was told on the phone they had very little Mini 32GB and could sell out before I got to the Apple Store.

When I raced in there, I saw a ton of Minis and was able to get my Black Mini 32GB within minutes.

I work in retail and I know that certain stores are actually telling employees to lie to the public. Sad but true
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Old Nov 24, 2012, 01:40 PM   #19
shenan1982
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Very strange. Apple has been getting very weird with their retail lately. No accessories in stores or online for iPhone 5? Odd.

When I bought mine, they told me they had tons in stock, but to buy one I had to go online at 10pm, reserve one, then pick up the next day. When it requires activation, etc, I can understand the online reservation process, but the iPad mini? Makes no sense.

The only thing I can really think of is some of these tactics are to avoid people buying bunches to resell, and for that purpose, these "don't have them" generic replies, and online reservations do make sense, but it seems like a whole lot of legwork and negative impressions being made about the retail experience.

To most of us, we expect if they have them to be able to just walk in and buy one. It's not like it's a privilege to give a company our money, it should be their privilege to serve us as customers. Apple seems to be losing sight of the fact that their success is a result of the customer, not the opposite, and that's the most worrisome aspect of Apple in my mind right now.
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Old Nov 24, 2012, 02:16 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by shenan1982 View Post
Very strange. Apple has been getting very weird with their retail lately. No accessories in stores or online for iPhone 5? Odd.

When I bought mine, they told me they had tons in stock, but to buy one I had to go online at 10pm, reserve one, then pick up the next day. When it requires activation, etc, I can understand the online reservation process, but the iPad mini? Makes no sense.

The only thing I can really think of is some of these tactics are to avoid people buying bunches to resell, and for that purpose, these "don't have them" generic replies, and online reservations do make sense, but it seems like a whole lot of legwork and negative impressions being made about the retail experience.

To most of us, we expect if they have them to be able to just walk in and buy one. It's not like it's a privilege to give a company our money, it should be their privilege to serve us as customers. Apple seems to be losing sight of the fact that their success is a result of the customer, not the opposite, and that's the most worrisome aspect of Apple in my mind right now.
Quote:
Originally Posted by shenan1982 View Post
Very strange. Apple has been getting very weird with their retail lately. No accessories in stores or online for iPhone 5? Odd.

When I bought mine, they told me they had tons in stock, but to buy one I had to go online at 10pm, reserve one, then pick up the next day. When it requires activation, etc, I can understand the online reservation process, but the iPad mini? Makes no sense.

The only thing I can really think of is some of these tactics are to avoid people buying bunches to resell, and for that purpose, these "don't have them" generic replies, and online reservations do make sense, but it seems like a whole lot of legwork and negative impressions being made about the retail experience.

To most of us, we expect if they have them to be able to just walk in and buy one. It's not like it's a privilege to give a company our money, it should be their privilege to serve us as customers. Apple seems to be losing sight of the fact that their success is a result of the customer, not the opposite, and that's the most worrisome aspect of Apple in my mind right now.
I initially bought my first iPad mini online for pick up the next day because I made it to the 5th Ave. Apple Store after 10PM. They had more devices in stock but were unwilling to sell me an iPad mini on the spot. The refused me outright.

I was infuriated, but submitted to Apple's wishes. Needless to say I was left with a sour taste in my mouth. Picking up my iPad mini the next day was quite a hassle too because my bad experience on the previous day carried over, and there seemed to be this stupid and long process for picking up something I had already payed for.

Does anybody know the reasoning behind this strategy by Apple? I doubt it has anything to do with people buying bunches of iPads - there's a limit of 2 per person, at the store and online.
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Old Nov 24, 2012, 02:31 PM   #21
joshtheburrito
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Originally Posted by garyp609 View Post
I had the identical experience. I was told they didn't have any in stock at all. The employee showed me the inventory system that had all the minis greyed out. They also had 3 rows of minis on a table called express checkout. When I asked about buying one they just reached behind the table and found me one. That was right after "we don't have any"
It seems that you have to ask about express checkout to get what you want. It's very strange.
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Old Nov 24, 2012, 03:10 PM   #22
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It seems like this everywhere. Some people tell you they don't have anything, some tell you they only have a select few models, some tell you can't buy after a certain time of the day, and then you see the people behind (without reservations) you get the iPad that you asked for, but was told was unavailable. But you can get back in the hour long line to buy it if you want!
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Old Nov 24, 2012, 03:26 PM   #23
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I noticed that too yesterday. They had them all in stock on the front tables, but were grabbing them from the back.
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Old Nov 24, 2012, 08:30 PM   #24
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The likely cause of all of that confusion is because the stores do have Mini's but they are reserved one way or another for pickup etc. It probably takes a supervisor to release a Mini that has been reserved for someone else.
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Old Nov 24, 2012, 09:00 PM   #25
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I noticed that too yesterday. They had them all in stock on the front tables, but were grabbing them from the back.
It's common practice in many retail stores to keep empty boxes out front, and the real stuff in the back (or at least under lock and key).

Maybe that's what was going on?
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