Apple iPods top sellers via vending machine

“Apple Computer Inc.’s hot digital music players may be better associated with the Cupertino, California, company’s hip Apple Stores, but over the past few months, they’ve also started to pop up next to less exotic products in special vending machines built by Zoom Systems,” Robert McMillan reports for IDG News Service. “Since April, the San Francisco company has been selling iPods across the U.S. in ‘robotic product delivery systems’ (don’t say the words ‘vending machine’ around Zoom Systems executives; they find the term archaic). The first iPods were sold in Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, and the players can now be found in “Zoom Shop” machines operating in malls, hotels and grocery stores across the country, the company said.”

McMillan reports, “Though Zoom Shops sell plenty of other products, including digital cameras and snacks, the iPod is the top seller, said Rick Cusick, Zoom Systems’ executive vice president of merchandising. ‘It seems to unleash an incredible impulse opportunity,’ he said. ‘You can walk up and buy and iPod in 20 seconds.’ …Having just phased out the iPod Minis, the company is now selling the iPod Shuffle and iPod nano in its machines. Next month, it plans to begin selling Apple’s latest video-enabled iPods.”

Full article here.

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17 Comments

  1. So I’m in the airport, about to get on my transatlantic flight to Guam or whatever, and I decide I have just enough time before boarding to buy an iPod.

    And then to my horror, I realize I have no way to (1) charge it or (2) but anything on it to listen to (unless it is the U2 iPod I suppose?)

    If this was married to a iTMS kiosk system that allowed purchases and transfers of files to the iPod I could see it.

    MDN word: ways

  2. So anyway .. didn’t Doug Adams get right quick with whipping out an Applescript which utilizes the Yahoo Video Search RSS capability to automatically search out links for .movs and .mpegs and then automatically load ’em into your iTunes as Podcast episodes? Damn straight, he did.

    http://www.dougscripts.com/itunes/scripts/ss.php?sp=yahoovideosearch

    And didn’t that circumstance cause me to download this here Bizzaro iPod video about an iPod Store on the very first search? Yup, again. I dunno where it actually came from on the Yahoo Video Search (that part isn’t identified once it’s downloaded), but Gizmodo has a link to it, so …

    http://www.gizmodo.com/images/bizzaro_ipod.mov

  3. Just a few links to see what this Zoom Store looks like:

    http://www.zoomsystems.com/home.html

    http://www.zoomsystems.com/products.html

    and an interesting quote from the products page:

    “The products we sell are the same types of products that you would find in a staffed shop. We are not limited to low cost items; in fact our highest sales levels have been achieved with consumer electronics in the $99 to $500 price range.”

    There’s a link for a testimonial video (http://www.zoomsystems.com/home_video.html) but I I get is a page not found error.

    MDN MW = property
    Hmmm… I wonder how Zoom Systems secures its property in such public places.

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