Apple continuation patent shows company is pushing ahead on next-gen virtual store

“A newly published Apple continuation patent today relates to a next generation Apple virtual store,” Jack Purcher reports for Patently Apple.

“The patent titled ‘Enhancing Online Shopping Atmosphere’ illustrates that the virtual store will involve some 3D dynamic whereby ‘Apple Reps’ will greet online visitors to assist them with their purchases and/or answer questions about specific products,” Purcher reports. “Apple was granted a related patent titled ‘Method, system, and medium for representing visitor activity in an online store’ in February of this year.”

Purcher reports, “Apple’s continual push on this front, at minimum, shows us that they’re keeping this interesting project alive.”

Full article, with Apple’s patent application illustrations, here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Arline M.” for the heads up.]


  1. Ummmm. No. I don’t want ‘Flo’ helping me buy $hit. I guess it depends on how it’s implemented. But seems like adding a layer of customer service I don’t need. Geeze, better not be a paperclip dude.

  2. anyone else thinks its funny that if you go to on your iPhone that they don’t have an iPhone optimized site and Apple Store? Why not? Seems like it should be a given.

  3. The whole concept seems like a step backwards. The idea of ‘e buying’ is to get rid of cs people ‘helping’ me. That’s why 90% of what I buy is online. If human cs reps aren’t bad enough, imagine an avatar rep hounding you. Takes the sims to a new level. I say ‘delete’.

  4. When I call my local Apple store with questions they say that they have a time limit. That’s fine, it’s a business. So I think if they have reps that could provide a short presentation on something of interest that it would be great. I’d hope as well that a 3D experience could improve iTunes. I prefer a store like experience to flip throught CDs etc that the flat 2D store doesn’t offer. Knowing Apple, if they do it, they’ll set the standard just like their brick and mortar stores do today.

  5. Hey I like video game worlds like Bioshock and I’d definitely check out the Apple store when some new hardware came out to try and get a better perspective of a product. I don’t always have the time to go down to our Apple Store in the mall especially in the winter when I hate to drive. You can’t go by patent graphics which just shows a concept. The real design will likely blow us away knowing Apple.

  6. I’d like to think that Apple will create a new kind of store from thier brick and motar kind. Think of a massive Apple book store where I could roam in and out of isles like I do at a book store. I’d like that more than a 2d flat design where I just scroll forever. good idea really.

  7. I think that toby has an idea here. Apple could use a new kind of store to try-out new kinds of products to see if they would fly. Then again, Apple’s too secretive for that. But maybe a store like this could help with feedback etc. i dunno.

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