Retail

Man, mad at Internet seller, texts him Shakespeare (all of it)

Getting mad occasionally results in getting even, but often only in getting madder.

Ultimately, the whole point of revenge isn't even to get even at all. It's to feel that you have.

Edd Joseph needed to feel better about an internet transaction. As the Bristol Post declaims it, he bought a PS3 online for 80 British pounds (around $132) on the Gumtree site and the transaction went perfectly.

Except for the tiny detail that he didn't receive his PS3.

This he deemed an arrow of outrageous fortune. So he mulled and cogitated and pondered and thought therefore … Read more

Your new disease, America: Compulsive gadget-hoarding

If we can't unearth a new illness, syndrome, or phobia at least once a month, we are not America.

I am delighted, therefore, that by merely keeping my eyes open I can bring news of the latest.

Americans are suffering in hordes from compulsive gadget-hoarding.

I hope that, by merely writing that sentence, I can confront you with something that you know is true.

I hope that you can look your friends in the eye at your next social event and declare: "Hullo, I'm Claudia. And I'm a compulsive gadget-hoarder."… Read more

Staples to shutter up to 225 stores amid online pressures

Staples will start closing stores to improve its chances of competing with online retailers.

The company on Thursday announced that it plans to close as many as 225 stores between now and the end of 2015. The closures, which will affect only North American retail locations, are expected to help Staples save $500 million. The move follows the 40 net store closures Staples initiated last year.

Staples has been making a major push for the online space. The company reported that at the end of 2013, it had more than 500,000 products available on Staples.com. At the beginning … Read more

Samsung opens the throttle on its retail expansion

Samsung might not have the same sort of brick-and-mortar storefronts as Apple and Microsoft, but it is hard at work beefing up its presence in the retail sector.

Last spring, the South Korean electronics giant revealed its intention to launch Samsung mini stores in Best Buy stores and Best Buy Mobile locations across the United States. The company said that it would operate those Samsung Experience shops for three years, and then evaluate with Best Buy whether to continue the arrangement.

On top of its 1,400 US locations, Samsung is now pushing ahead with plans for a greater presence … Read more

China's Alibaba plans US e-commerce push with 11 Main

China's e-commerce giant Alibaba will soon enter the US with an online-shopping site, according to a new report.

Alibaba, through subsidiaries Vendio and Auctiva, will launch an e-retail site known as 11 Main, the company told Reuters on Tuesday. According to the report, the marketplace will feature technology items, jewelry, and fashion goods. The sellers will be "hand-picked shop owners," the company told Reuters.

The news that Alibaba will come to the US on the back of 11 Main could be important for sites like Amazon and eBay. A huge company with serious retail cache, Alibaba could … Read more

Apple closer to opening 'iconic' 'flagship' San Francisco store

Apple is known for opening haute-design retail stores. There's the massive glass cube in New York City, the high-columned facade in Berlin, and the futuristic transparent cylinder in Shanghai.

The company announced last May that it was planning to open the mother of all retail stores in San Francisco -- near its Silicon Valley home base. Of course, projects like these must go through copious planning meetings, blueprint revisions, and city approvals.

But now, Apple is now one step closer to its vision. The San Francisco Planning Commission voted to accept Apple's plans (PDF) for its new store … Read more

Apple to open first retail store in Brazil next week

Apple is finally launching its first store in Brazil.

The Web site for the new store points to Rio de Janeiro's VillageMall shopping center as its locale and February 15 as its launch date. The store will be Apple's first in Latin America, joining its hundreds of other outlets, most of which are in the US and Europe.

The store will host a couple of workshops on opening day devoted to the iPhone and iPhoto. A workshop on the following day will focus on the iPad, while subsequent workshops will cover iCloud and the Numbers app.

Apple first … Read more

Apple store using sniffers to combat B.O.?

Have you noticed that not everyone cares too much about the odor they emit?

Do you recoil at times when you walk past an apparently pleasant-looking person, as the olfactory experience they incite might call for fumigation?

I confess that one place where this might be an extreme problem is the Apple store.

Apple stores are so full of humanity at most times of the day. One has to squeeze through, in order to venerate a product or two.

A report suggests that Apple is aware of this slightly stinky problem. Rocco Pendola of the Street says that the very … Read more

Teen signs for neighbor's online package, gets arrested

These days, we seem to be buying more and more things online. Which means more deliveries come to our doors, sometimes at odd hours.

When we're out, there's an expectation that a neighbor might sign for it. We'd do it for them, after all.

On occasion, this can get us into trouble. It did for one teenager in the UK, who signed for a delivery on his neighbor's behalf and promptly got arrested.

As the Telegraph reports it, 19-year-old James Sutcliffe had no idea what was inside the package.

The police thought they did, however. So … Read more

Amazon eyes payments biz with Kindle checkout system -- report

Brick-and-mortar retailers may soon have a good reason to partner with Amazon. The online giant reportedly plans to offer physical retailers a checkout system that would use Kindle tablets to process payments.

The system could be ready as soon as this summer, according to a report Wednesday in The Wall Street Journal (subscription required). The system, which would initially be offered to small and midsize retailers, could involve either a combination of Kindle and credit card readers, or other services such as data analysis and Web site development.

The move would both strengthen Amazon's relationship with physical retailers and … Read more