Apple plans self-checkout for stores

Apple storeApple is said to be planning to make buying its products even easier than ever, with changes to its retail store iOS app pretty much doing everything short of handing you the funds to buy the latest piece of kit. The change builds on the self-checkout concept that is now a familiar sight in many supermarkets, and will allow customers to order and buy items direct from their mobile devices. Roving sales staff already help customers purchase on the go.
Under the new system widely rumoured to be rolled out in time for the Christmas buying season, Apple is said to be ready to enable customers using the retail store app to buy accessories and other items made by the company. The charge will be made via the customer's iTunes account.

In-store staff will be on the lookout for anyone trying to walk out without paying for their purchase, and it's thought that buyers will be able to show an emailed receipt as proof of purchase. Currently, customers who manage to catch the eye of an Apple store staff member can make a purchase via staff EasyPay devices, but this latest change means the customer can do the job themselves.

Apple retail stores

The system is thought to be for buying accessories and peripherals, rather than computers and phones. If you want to buy a high value product you'll still need to go to a store employee, as these products are not stocked on the shelves in Apple retail stores, but in stockrooms.

Apple has also been testing a system which allows customers to have their online orders shipped to their nearest Apple store for pickup. The programme has been running at three stores in San Francisco and is due to roll out to all 16 stores in the Bay Area soon.

This system is also set to be tweaked so that a single order of multiple items can be shipped to a number of different addresses. So if you want to buy all your friends and family some Apple products for Christmas, you can make one order and get the whole lot delivered direct.

The slickness with which you can hand over your money and consume is, truly, a modern wonder of the world.
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