Apple Stores to focus on converting PC users?

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Apple MacBookAn analyst has suggested that Apple will shift the focus of its retail stores, at least Stateside but probably worldwide, to enticing and converting PC users.

Though iPod sales in the stores have been disappointing recently, Charles Wolf (from Needham & Co) says that this is because iPods are now on sale in many other outlets. On the other hand, Mac sales represented 47% of store sales, up 30% on the previous year.

He now believes Apple will target Windows users, using Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard and Boot Camp to encourage them to make the switch to Mac.

“We expect the stores to play a pivotal role in educating the hoards of Windows users visiting the stores about Boot Camp,” he said.

The stores will also be important for the more general consumer-oriented products, such as the iPhone and Apple TV.

He states that the majority of visitors to Apple stores are in fact Windows users, probably because of the popularity of the iPod. “The stores represent the ideal venue for enticing these people to switch.”

Apple Stores haven’t taken such a hold in the UK yet, but it will be interesting to see if and how they change over time. 2007 won’t be the iPhone’s year in the UK, but Leopard will be out soon and I’m sure Apple are as keen for British PC users to make the switch to Mac.

(Via MacWorld)

Related stories: Apple TV (working title iTV) coming to UK in February | Selfridges sells iPod lessons | New Apple Store opens in Birmingham

Andy Merrett