When you buy an iPhone 15, Apple may try extra hard to make you set it up in-store, according to an X post from Mark Gurman on interesting goings-on at Apple Stores prior to the Apple September event scheduled for tomorrow.
Gurman writes that "Apple will also push in-store setup further more than in prior years and is implementing new software and employee metrics to track this."
You may not have known you could set up an iPhone at an Apple Store, but this is something Apple's offered for a while in the form of Personal Setup sessions. These are available to anyone who bought an iPhone (or other Apple device) less than 90 days ago from Apple itself, and can be done in-store or online.
iPhone 15: Why do an in-store set-up?
Apple offering iPhone 15 buyers a hand with set-up sounds generous, especially for users who may struggle to get an iPhone running themselves, such as the elderly or those with certain accessibility needs. But in-store set-up is also rather inconvenient. Being able to sort out your new phone in the comfort of your home and on your own time certainly appeals to me more than hanging around in an Apple Store waiting for your data to transfer. Especially since Apple offers one-to-one online help appointments for those who need it anyway.
There are some theoretical benefits for Apple if more people take the in-store set-up route. Having staff on hand to help ensure users move into their new device smoothly could reduce the number of iPhone 15 buyers clogging up their support channels with set-up questions, as well as strengthen the public perception of Apple's customer service.
Helping users with iPhone set-up could speed up the trade-in process too. There's already a deadline for sending an old iPhone to Apple to get a discount on your new iPhone, but having the assurance from an Apple staffer that the data migration process has all gone according to plan may help people prepare to part with their old device quicker.
To be fair, the iPhone 15 will likely offer a fair number of features that are new to people, such as the Dynamic Island for the regular iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus. And I'm sure people will have questions about the supposed transition from Lightning to USB-C. The iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max are both tipped to sport a new Action button, so in an in-store setup option could help some shoppers figure out how to set it up and what to do with it.
It feels like a toss-up whether Apple would talk about this new in-store set-up focus during the Apple September event tomorrow. But we should know more soon.
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Richard is based in London, covering news, reviews and how-tos for phones, tablets, gaming, and whatever else people need advice on. Following on from his MA in Magazine Journalism at the University of Sheffield, he's also written for WIRED U.K., The Register and Creative Bloq. When not at work, he's likely thinking about how to brew the perfect cup of specialty coffee.