A new Apple retail store will open in South Korea soon. Apple confirmed the news to Reuters last Friday. The store will go head-to-head with Samsung in its home country.
Rumors of a new Apple retail store in South Korea swirled in September 2016. Forbes reported that a Korean publication and Wall Street Journal heard a store was imminent. The tech giant did not say where or when the store would open. Nevertheless, The Korea Herald reported the availability of a 530 square foot space in Sinsa-dong. WSJ‘s sources believed the site to end up in one of several places.
Apple started listing jobs for its future Korea-based retail locations.
“We’re now hiring the team that will offer our customers in Seoul the service, education and entertainment that is loved by Apple customers around the world,” the company said in its statement.
Furthermore, this news marks the latest ante of Apple’s war with Samsung. South Korean smartphone makers, LG and Samsung, dominate the Korean market. Combined both companies comprise over 80 percent of South Korea’s phone market. Globally edges out Apple 21 percent global share to 12.5% for Apple.
South Koreans support their national brands. But Apple’s iPhone made a mark there as well. Something Samsung noticed. The company tried to take advantage of weak iPhone sales and, rumor has it, Samsung rushed the Note 7.
Unfortunately, the move backfired. The phone’s batteries burst into flame. Then came the massive recall. Of course, the PR fiasco followed. And an intended triumphant moment became one of 2016’s tech failures.
As Samsung’s struggles continue, Apple has begun making moves of its own. Apple will expand its Raleigh, North Carolina Apple Store. Crabtree Valley Mall spokesman Brian Asbill said the store will move to a new location in the complex.
“That will be the largest Apple store presence in the market, Asbill said. Apple will be moving from a space of about 5,500 square feet to a space of about 9,000 square feet. Asbill says the format will follow the company’s new minimalist prototype design with very limited signage.
“We are delighted that Apple has chosen Crabtree Valley Mall for their first new prototype store in the market,” Asbill says. “With the expanded space and the reimagined store, we believe Apple’s move will continue to elevate the shopping experience for Crabtree Valley Mall customers. It also continues to reinforce the fact that major retailers view Crabtree Valley Mall as one of the pre-eminent locations for their brands.”
A New Apple Retail Store and Stronger Partnerships
Plus, Apple’s flagship Fifth Avenue store in New York City will move for a short period. The store will undergo renovations. The tech company started renovations on its stores to give customers more space.
In addition, we reported on Apple’s efforts to solidify its relationships with Asian countries. Tim Cook visited China on a “charm offensive”. He networked with app creators and wooed Chinese officials.
The South Korea store looks like another prong to Apple’s effort.