Why does Apple need to take down its store with a new release?

zub3qin

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Apr 10, 2007
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Does anyone have any rational explanation why Apple has to shut down its website whenever there is a new item about to be released?
As if that is the only way to update the website-- by shutting it down?

I think it must be some sort of tradition or superstition within Apple.
Also, I suppose it is like the bat signal-- it is a big warning light that gets flashed to supernerds throughout the world- who go on and publicize the imminent release of a product in a way paid advertisements could never do.

Any other guesses?
 

PlaceofDis

macrumors Core
Jan 6, 2004
19,239
4
Does anyone have any rational explanation why Apple has to shut down its website whenever there is a new item about to be released?
As if that is the only way to update the website-- by shutting it down?

I think it must be some sort of tradition or superstition within Apple.
Also, I suppose it is like the bat signal-- it is a big warning light that gets flashed to supernerds throughout the world- who go on and publicize the imminent release of a product in a way paid advertisements could never do.

Any other guesses?
they don't take down the whole site, just the store.
and because they have a lot of crap on their store and they don't want things to get messed up. seems simple enough to me. it is indeed the safest and easiest way to update things.
 

zub3qin

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Apr 10, 2007
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Amazon updates its site probably 100 times a day. They are somehow able to do so without shutting doen the whole site each time.

I still don't think there is any logical reason why Apple.com still does this- except superstition, tradition and to sound the "new product alarms" to all of the Mac fans aound the world.
 

Zwhaler

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Jun 10, 2006
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i doubt that the main reason for taking down the store during an update is to alert supernerds as you said... There has got to be a better reason. Probably because products appear on multiple different pages (pictures, specs, support, etc.) and apple wants to update all of those pages at once with the new product.
 

zub3qin

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Apr 10, 2007
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Wirelessly posted (LGE-VX9900/1.0 UP.Browser/6.2.3.2 (GUI) MMP/2.0)

i doubt that the main reason for taking down the store during an update is to alert supernerds as you said... There has got to be a better reason. Probably because products appear on multiple different pages (pictures, specs, support, etc.) and apple wants to update all of those pages at once with the new product.
I dunno. I am not a web designer, but it seems to me that you could just mirror your entire website on a server, make the new changes on the mirrored version, test out whatever you wanted, and then flip a switch and the modified version goes "live" instantaneously.

Any web designers in the house?
 

nichos

macrumors 6502
Jul 17, 2004
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Jacksonville, Fl
Probably, as opposed to amazon, when a new apple product is about to come out, people hammer the site like crazy. I think it would make it hard to debug.

Or, "it's apple" that is, how can they have a press conference for an ipod speaker and have everyone turn out? Maybe it's all part of the hype;)
 

CalBoy

macrumors 604
May 21, 2007
7,849
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I think part of the reason has to do with orders placed during the update. Apple probably doesn't want you to be able to place orders because there would be complaints about people buying a product at the "wrong" time. It makes it a lot easier to stop all purchases for a few hours, and then bring the store back with all the updated products.
 

Umbongo

macrumors 601
Sep 14, 2006
4,931
54
England
I think part of the reason has to do with orders placed during the update. Apple probably doesn't want you to be able to place orders because there would be complaints about people buying a product at the "wrong" time. It makes it a lot easier to stop all purchases for a few hours, and then bring the store back with all the updated products.
Bingo!

Also I can't imagine Apple lose any serious revenue from having their store down. The other things mentioned in the thread are also bonus advantages.
 

mr_matalino

macrumors 6502a
Oct 14, 2005
528
34
Amazon updates its site probably 100 times a day. They are somehow able to do so without shutting doen the whole site each time.

I still don't think there is any logical reason why Apple.com still does this- except superstition, tradition and to sound the "new product alarms" to all of the Mac fans aound the world.

Why don't you call Apple PR to find out?
 

Mac-Addict

macrumors 65816
Aug 30, 2006
1,421
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London
Its so they don't have any bugs allowing you to buy 100 iPhones at 1$ a time. When Apple update their store they check everything for bugs.
 

jdechko

macrumors 601
Jul 1, 2004
4,093
218
Somebody needs to make an Apple Store status widget with growl notifications built-in. :)
 

AmbitiousLemon

Moderator emeritus
Nov 28, 2001
3,413
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down in Fraggle Rock
I dunno. I am not a web designer, but it seems to me that you could just mirror your entire website on a server, make the new changes on the mirrored version, test out whatever you wanted, and then flip a switch and the modified version goes "live" instantaneously.

Any web designers in the house?
There are a lot of deployment applications available (and simple scripts one could write yourself) that would allow you to deploy and update websites instantly like you describe. As I think you can imagine some are quite powerful. There is absolutely no technical reason Apple needs to take down the store. If you want to look for an explanation don't try to explain it by suggesting one can not test and deploy websites with no downtime - you better believe that was figured out a long time ago.
 

flopticalcube

macrumors G4
I was administering an in-house web site nearly 10 years ago. We never took the site down for changes. Changes are made and tested offline and then brought online with the press of a button. With a shop site, however, you don't want somebody to be half way or nearly all the way through a transaction only to have the products yanked at the checkout because the site has changed and they are no longer available.
 

bigandy

macrumors G3
Apr 30, 2004
8,852
0
Murka
I'd blame WebObjects. :p
not that I know webobjects, but why not blame something you know nothing about :p ;)
 

neven

macrumors 6502a
Oct 10, 2006
815
0
Portland, OR
With a shop site, however, you don't want somebody to be half way or nearly all the way through a transaction only to have the products yanked at the checkout because the site has changed and they are no longer available.
I can see some reasons for taking the store down before major updates, but I don't get this one - why would something be no longer available just because there's a new product available? If a new iMac comes out, what's wrong with letting me continue my purchase of a previous-gen one?

On the PR side, there would probably be people who would go "d'oh!" upon ordering a new iMac only to learn that a new one became available right after they ordered, but those people would be equally annoyed the next day, regardless of whether the store had gone down or not.
 

Umbongo

macrumors 601
Sep 14, 2006
4,931
54
England
I can see some reasons for taking the store down before major updates, but I don't get this one - why would something be no longer available just because there's a new product available? If a new iMac comes out, what's wrong with letting me continue my purchase of a previous-gen one?

On the PR side, there would probably be people who would go "d'oh!" upon ordering a new iMac only to learn that a new one became available right after they ordered, but those people would be equally annoyed the next day, regardless of whether the store had gone down or not.
People would just cancel their orders and re-order, so Apple may aswell just prevent them. There is no reason for Apple not to take their store down, and it has many benefits for them.
 

neven

macrumors 6502a
Oct 10, 2006
815
0
Portland, OR
People would just cancel their orders and re-order, so Apple may aswell just prevent them. There is no reason for Apple not to take their store down, and it has many benefits for them.
I see - Apple's order cancellation says that you can cancel within 90 minutes. If the store is down for longer than that, they will bounce some cancellations.

I wonder if that just increases the number of returns, though...
 

Sean Dempsey

macrumors 68000
Aug 7, 2006
1,617
3
They do it to give a raging hard-on for all of us here. I know when I see the sign, I am so excited I might just burst.