Apple today announced plans to launch dozens of new educational sessions next month in all 495 Apple Stores ranging in topics from photo and video to music, coding, art and design, and more. The hands-on sessions, collectively called “Today at Apple,” will be led by highly-trained team members, and in select cities world-class artists, photographers and musicians, teaching sessions from basics and how-to lessons to professional-level programs.
“At the heart of every Apple Store is the desire to educate and inspire the communities we serve,” said Angela Ahrendts, Apple’s senior vice president of Retail, in a statement. “‘Today at Apple’ is one of the ways we’re evolving our experience to better serve local customers and entrepreneurs. We’re creating a modern-day town square, where everyone is welcome in a space where the best of Apple comes together to connect with one another, discover a new passion, or take their skill to the next level. We think it will be a fun and enlightening experience for everyone who joins.”
The free programs focus on the features of Apple products customers love most, across all skill levels and ages. For example, an iPhone user interested in photography can start with six How To sessions that cover shooting, organizing, editing, and more. More advanced photographers can join experiential Photo Walks that leave the store to dive into techniques including light and shadow, portraits and storytelling. Going further, a Photo Lab features accomplished photographers on topics such as capturing candids, building a brand on social media or simply sharing their perspective.*
Apple will also offer special programs for families and educators. Teachers can come together for Teacher Tuesday to learn new ways to incorporate technology into their classrooms, or aspiring coders of all ages can learn how to code in Swift, Apple’s programming language for iOS and Mac apps.** Families can join weekend Kids Hour sessions ranging from music making to coding with robots. Small business owners can engage with global and local entrepreneurs in the new Business Circuits program.*
Many sessions will be taught by new Creative Pros, the liberal arts equivalent to Apple’s technical Geniuses. Each Creative Pro is an expert in one or more areas of the arts, and highly trained to pass along their knowledge to Apple users of all levels.
“Today at Apple” Programming
“Today at Apple” offers programs with more than 60 different sessions in creative skills, including:
• Studio Hours are Apple’s version of a professor’s office hours. Creative Pros host 90-minute sessions on topics from art and design to documents and presentations. Anyone is welcome to bring in a personal project for advice from experts, or to use the space to work alongside others.
• Photo or Sketch Walks help attendees go beyond capturing moments by exploring new techniques hands on as they interact in their local community. Photo Walks include sessions such as framing architecture or capturing action on video, while Sketch Walks explore observational drawings, watercolor and brush techniques, and more.
• Kids Hour is designed to spark imagination and creativity through fun, hands-on projects. Sessions include coding with Sphero robots, Creating Music with GarageBand, and Making Movies Together with iMovie.
• Coding sessions are meant to introduce anyone to coding through Swift Playgrounds, an iPad app designed to make coding interactive and fun for beginners. These sessions will explore coding concepts with the same code professional developers use every day.**
• Photo Labs bring in talented photographers to experiment with new techniques and styles or uncover a new point of view in hands-on sessions. Similarly, Music Labs explore different genres and beats to introduce new tools to musicians of all levels.*
• Pro Series take advanced users on a deep dive into Final Cut Pro X and Logic Pro X with sessions on color correction and grading to post production, or audio mixing to editing for emotion, and more.*
• Perspectives and Performances, offered at select stores, feature influential artists and musicians talking about their creative process or sharing their talents live.
To deliver the new programs, each store will receive new Forum Displays, mobile screens created by Apple’s design team specifically for “Today at Apple” sessions, and updated seating and sound.
“Today at Apple” will launch worldwide in May, with sessions in every store.
*In select stores
**In most countries
Source: Apple Inc.
MacDailyNews Take: Obviously, these free sessions are valuable and will draw people to the stores. We just wish the smaller stores had a quieter place for these programs to take place; some Apple Stores are so noisy it’ll be hard to conduct the classes. Some Apple Stores really need fewer acoustically “shiny” surfaces and more sound-absorbing materials!
Apple is overhauling its stores, and wants them to be the new Starbucks, says Angela Ahrendts – April 25, 2017