Apple exporting retail stores

Are foreign ears safe?

It can only be hoped that Apple will leave the advertisements for its iTunes Music Store behind as the company takes its retail stores overseas.

Fifty-seven Apple retail outlets have sprung up over the last two years, leading to more than $650 million in sales. Apple plans to continue closing in on reseller territory with 20 new stores in the next year, including the first non-US shop in Tokyo's Ginza shopping district.

As Apple turns toward the land of the Rising Sun, people in the U.S. have been assaulted with a lame follow up to the "Switcher" ad campaign. The white screen is back, but this time an odd assortment of musically inept, iPod carrying drones have replaced the switchers.

Seeing a poor man's Opie pretending to be the real Slim Shady was a painful interruption to last night's Texas showdown between the Dallas Mavericks and San Antonio Spurs for the conference basketball championship. Just as the game reached its apex, this bastardized Eminem (If that is possible - Ed) appears, hawking the iTunes Music Store with little class and less grace.

A second ad depicting a Sir-Mix-A-Lot impersonator was not much better. Never have the lyrics "Ooo, Rumplesmoothskin" been more abused.

Perhaps the Japanese will be saved from the commercials.

U.S. Apple fans will certainly find the ads playing in new stores opening up in Chicago and San Francisco.

The San Francisco outlet will be housed in Union Square just a few blocks away from a CompUSA with an impressive Apple collection. We'll be sure to walk down later and ask the prominent Apple reseller about this turn of events. ®