Apple Store App

I’ve never really gotten the point of the Apple Store app for iOS. I mean, do you really find yourself shopping for iPhones, iPads, and other Apple products so often that you need to install an app on your mobile device instead of just visiting the website?

But now it looks like Apple could be rolling out an update that will allow you to use the Apple Store app in a novel way in bricks and mortars stores. According to MacRumors, you’ll be able to use it for self-checkout.

In other words, you walk into an Apple Store. Pick up an item off the shelf and scan it with your phone’s camera and your iTunes Store account will be billed. You can now walk out with your item without ever going up to the cash register.

While you’ll be able to pick up cables, cases, and other accessories this way, big ticket items will still hang out in the stock room. You won’t be able to walk out with an iMac or a MacBook Air without asking for assistance. But you will still be able to pay on your device and just stop a staff member to help you collect your item before leaving.

I suspect that friendly employee standing near the front of the store might also want you to flash your digital receipt before you exit, but if the rumor is true, it’s a pretty remarkable way to blur the lines between digital shopping and real-world shopping.

Brad Linder

Brad Linder is editor of Liliputing and Mobiputing. He's been tinkering with mobile tech for decades and writing about it since...