Jean-Louis Gassé’s piece in The Guardian:
I came back from a trip on 2 November, the day the iPad mini became available, and immediately headed downtown. The new store is big, bold, elegant, even more so at night when the very bright lights and large Apple logo on its front dominate the street scene. (So much so I heard someone venture that Apple has recast itself as the antagonist in its 1984 commercial.)
The store is impressive… but its also unpleasantly, almost unbearably noisy. And mine isn’t a voice in the wilderness. The wife of a friend walked in, spent a few minutes, and vowed to never return for fear of hearing loss. She’d rather go to the cramped but much more hospitable Stanford store.
A few days later, I heard a similar complaint from the spouse of an Apple employee. She used to enjoy accompanying her husband to the old Palo Alto store, but now refuses because of the cacophony.
Yikes. Gassée describes about the ambient noise hitting nearly 80dB, louder than the traffic outside.
This harks back to the recent story of the floor cleaning problems with the first Apple mini-store.It’s no secret that with some Apple products form takes priority over function (the white MacBooks with the cracking top cases is a classic example) and The same can usually be said of the stores when moving to newer designs.