According to Mark Gurman from Bloomberg, Apple is starting to ship products from its network of Apple Stores to speed up shipping in Canada and the United States.
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“Now that items in stock can be shipped directly to consumers from a network of nearly 300 stores spread across the United States and Canada, according to people familiar with the matter,” Gurman reports.
In Canada, Apple uses UPS for deliveries, which can arrive as soon as one day after orders are placed. Shipping from stores will provide faster deliveries to customers who live further away from distribution centers. Sources note that “the program will apply to customers living within 100 miles of a store.”
The new delivery system was beta tested in the summer in a small number of stores, but not all stores in the US and Canada are part of this yet. Apple told staff that the change contributes to lower costs, can improve product margins and is environmentally friendly.
Apple’s operations team will decide whether an order is shipped from an Apple Store or not, with customers unable to choose the option.
With some Apple stores now becoming shipping centers for online orders, the company can continue to sell products under COVID-19 locking. Some stores already have backrooms converted into smaller customer centers, joining some Apple Store employees who have worked from home as online support and sales staff.