This post is part of a series of posts about switching to a Mac – here are links to all the posts:
- Switching to Mac Part 1: The Decision
- Switching to Mac Part 2: The Retail Experience
- Switching to Mac Part 3: The Unboxing
- Switching to Mac Part 4: In Use
- Switching to Mac Part 5: Finding a Photo Editor
I recently bought a Mac after years of using Windows PCs. If you want to know how I came to the decision, see part 1. The act of buying a Mac from an Apple store is kind of unusual in itself.
The Apple store in Exeter is welcoming. Very welcoming. Maybe a little too much so, with staff on both sides of the doorway waiting to pounce, and numerous staff around waiting to speak to you as you look around. They’re not pushy, though, just chatty. I felt a bit uneasy going in – I’m nowhere near hip enough to enter an Apple store, and wasn’t sure if I’d be allowed in without becoming much cooler somehow. It turned out not to be a problem. I suspect I got away with it because I had a Lowepro bag – there are probably special rules to let photographers in even if they’re a bit unhip.
On the second visit, I was there to buy. I bypassed the door guards swiftly, and headed straight for the 24″ iMacs. A friendly assistant called Hannah turned to ask if she could help, so I just said “Yeah, er, 24-inch iMac, wireless mouse, and a copy of Aperture”.
There was a short pause, and she said “Oh. You want that? That was easy!”
She explained that upgrading to wireless keyboard as well as mouse was almost no difference in cost compared to buying the extra wireless mouse, so I went for that option. She then explained a special offer they had on printers, that would give me a fairly decent HP inkjet for free through a cashback offer. Since our only printer at that point was a Windows GDI printer, which wouldn’t work with a Mac, I took that too. She offered me Apple Care, which I turned down, but may consider later anyway.
Ringing up the Sale
This part was the first real surprise. There are no tills. Hannah just opened a browser on the display machine we were looking at, and logged into Apple’s retail system from there. The sale is rung up through a web browser on the display machines, and set for delivery to one of the two desks in the middle of the sales floor. The browser then showed the progress of the order being picked and brought to us while we just chatted about cameras. Sam wandered off to fondle the iPod Touch.
After a while, the stuff was all brought down the glass stairs. Hannah pulled a card machine off a holster on her belt, and took the payment. She took my email address, and the receipt was emailed to me there and then. No paper needed.
All done. She made sure I had the details of their training courses and demos, and where to do the rebate for the printer. The iMac box turned out to be surprisingly heavy, but I turned down the offer of help taking everything back to the car, and made away with my new toys.