Comments on: palmOne Opens Airport Store in Pittsburgh

palmOne has opened a new concept electronics store at Pittsburgh International Airport's Airmall. The store offers palmOne's line of handhelds, smartphones and other electronics and accessories.
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onestar @ 7/6/2004 4:17:45 PM #
These stores are all well and good, but unless you're a ticketed passenger with a boarding pass, you can't get to them.

Believe me, It's great for the traveler, but for everyone else, they're not that helpful.

It used to be (pre 9-11) that you could go to the Airmall in Pittsburgh and shop. It was a great selling point: You could shop in a "secure" environment and pay prices equivalent to other malls.

Merely an observation...

One by one, the penguins are stealing my sanity.

RE: Eh.
LiveFaith @ 7/6/2004 5:19:18 PM #
I think flyers are the main objective here. Obviously more warm bodies is a good thing, but P1 still sees their target market and is going for future "brand loyal" customers.

Pat Horne;
RE: Eh.
tstetz @ 7/6/2004 5:34:15 PM #
I'm an employee out at PIA and checked out the store on Saturday.

In regards to it only being open to ticketed passangers: that may change come September. It was discussed about reopening the Airmall to the public in June but it was put off due to summer security concerns. Its on the table again for September though.

Re: Store itself

Its pretty nice with a fair variety of stuff. Only palmOne PDA's of course though. I didn't see any laptops offhand but I could have missed them. Although the store isn't huge I was working at the time so didn't spend that long checking it out :-)

I don't know how knowledgeable the guys at the store really are or not. They didn't seem to know what my Tapwave Zodiac was and when I asked if they'd heard anything on the T4 rumors they looked at me blankly :-)

Prices didn't look too hot though. I looked at a Belkin 100m USB dongle and it was $89. The same model was $59 at Comp USA this weekend and it had a further $30 in rebates on top of that. So if I'd have bought it at the palmOne store I'd have been out $70!

Still, I'll be keeping on eye the place to see how it develops.

RE: Eh.
RoadKnight @ 7/6/2004 5:56:26 PM #

These stores are all well and good, but unless you're a ticketed passenger with a boarding pass, you can't get to them.

Believe me, It's great for the traveler, but for everyone else, they're not that helpful.

Ahh, but everyone else has these places called "Malls" they can go to. Big huge expansive buildings with lots of shops inside, free parking, 0% chance of being whisked off to the body-cavity search room. Maybe you've heard of them?

Who this is good for is the European or Asian traveller who didn't have time to go shopping while they were in the US and even w/inflated airport prices, getting it in the terminal still beats having to pay VAT and shipping.

RE: Eh.
palmdiva @ 7/7/2004 9:40:21 AM #
Everyone else may have malls but they don't have stores dedicated to Palm. The only mall near Philadelphia with a dedicated Palm store or in this case Palm Kiosk is Montgomery mall in Bethesda, MD. We were in the area a few weeks ago right after I bought my treo and stopped there. It was very small, comparable to the Dell kiosks in malls. The salesperson was fairly knowledgeable and I did by the a phone to stero adapter and the car charger. The headset adapter was cheaper there than it was on the PalmOne site. apparently there stock room is a floor below the booth, so he has to leave it unattended, although I give him kudos for going dowstairs and making sure he had every treo accessory and Zire 71 accessory he could find for another customer and I. It's been said before, but it was sheer lunacy to not put a store in the King of Prussia Mall. It's a flagship mall in the northeast and in the heart of upscale consumer and corporate users. The Apple store there is always packed.

RE: Eh.
elo @ 7/7/2004 11:54:26 AM #
As the previous poster said, the Pittsburgh Int'l Airport may get a loophole in the usual security regulations, largely because the airport has such a good mall inside. For those of you who haven't flown into Pittsburgh, the mall is in a central hub so everyone starting or stopping passes through the mall. Definitely one of the best airports in this country.

The "buzz" strategy is interesting, but I think the buzz ought to be somewhat measurable in immediate sales. Will the stores allow Treo purchasers to activate phone service?


Chicago is in dire need for one

vesther @ 7/6/2004 4:45:39 PM #
Bring a PalmOne Direct Store here in Chicago, I'm pretty sure it will benefit Chicagoland.

Sooner or later, all Palm-Powered Handhelds running under Intel's PXA27X line of processors need to implement Centrino Technology in addition to Intel's XScale technology and Intel's WMMX.
RE: Chicago is in dire need for one
MikeInDM @ 7/7/2004 1:34:50 PM #
Not sure I would really understand why. Does the palmOne store have something you can't purchase elsewhere? Between CompUSA and FranklinCovey, I find 99% of the stuff I need.

Sure, a palmOne store would be nice...but dire need? Doesn't Chicago have a greater selection of stores selling Palms than we have here in Des Moines?


RE: Chicago is in dire need for one
RhinoSteve @ 7/9/2004 7:33:11 AM #
True but there are many reasons why they went with Pittsburgh over Chicago. I knew some people from Pittsburgh and it was explaned to me that there has been a major program for the past 30 years to upgrade the airport so half of the exchange traffic would be moved from Chicago to Pittsburgh.

On a national air route map, the two cities are not that far away from each other for exchanging for coast to coast travel. Also, I'm sure the Pittsburgh airport gave PalmOne a much better retail space deal than the Second City.

I'll check the store out next time I change flights there.

Who buys a PDA at the Airport?

Gekko @ 7/6/2004 8:57:39 PM #
What if you had to return it?

RE: Who buys a PDA at the Airport?
shogun @ 7/7/2004 8:02:31 AM #
I am assuming that they would treat the purchase as if it was done online and therefore, your return policy would be with P1 instead of the brick and mortar shop itself.

I am wondering how they would setup Treo 600's at the airport. If I need data service, doesn't that mean that I am getting a cell provider ( AT&T, Cingular, T-Mobile, etc)and local # for the location I am purchasing it in unless I currently use that provider and could swap my sim card?

I am not sure users would want to have a phone # that is long distance to everyone or confuses people.

RE: Who buys a PDA at the Airport?
SeldomVisitor @ 7/7/2004 9:38:13 AM #
PalmOne, during some presentation that I forget, explicitly said they were not looking for sales in these stores, but buzz.

RE: Who buys a PDA at the Airport?
Gekko @ 7/7/2004 9:50:38 AM #
>"PalmOne...explicitly said they were not looking for sales in these stores, but buzz."

Oh, this is a novel idea!!! Forget about sales and just focus on "buzz"! I'm sure if Michael Dell heard this he'd be laughing his a$$ off!!!!!!!!!!

RE: Who buys a PDA at the Airport?
SeldomVisitor @ 7/7/2004 3:46:47 PM #
According to a couple well-reinforced threads on TreoCentral, the Verizon TREO is (1) essentially available NOW for order and (2) the same outrageous $500 (or $500+) price.

They should have super-rapid chargers

whitemiata @ 7/7/2004 11:35:37 AM #
I'm thinking that it might be beneficial for Palm to develop some sort of super-rapid charging technology to use in these stores.

If I were stuck in an airport for a few hours I could see paying a premium for a PDA if I knew they could stick it in a special charger and had it fully juiced in 10 minutes for me.

That would allow folks to go through the manual and play with their new toy DURING their trip.

Oh yeah, that means that it'd be nice if they also sold print manuals for a nominal fee in these stores.

just sayin'

P.S. I've had Palm handhelds for years now. If there's one thing that may sway me to the dark side is the incredibly annoying sig on here... don't remember the dude's handle... but the sig goes something like "A Palm handheld is the peanut butter and jelly of many people, if you don't have one your progress is for donuts" or something like that (yeah I know, for naught)

RE: They should have super-rapid chargers
hkklife @ 7/7/2004 1:14:05 PM #
PalmPress were supposed to release a Zire "glorified manual" book...."How to use your new Zire handheld" or some similar title but I never saw anything more on it.

What I'd actually like to see would be a quickie paper getting started book (more than the foldout sheet they currently include) in all new Palms other than the cheapest Zires. For Tungsten users, I'd like to see an old-fashioned thick, printed manual with a $15 or so store-bought "Power users' guide".

I really think that PLMO needs to start doing more to offer incentives to purchase higher-priced models (aside from more memory, mhz, and networking features).

For example, ideas for all Tungsten models (and possibly Treos too):

1. Printed manual of some kind
2. Complimentary 1-year warranty/1 discounted screen replacement
3. Decent bundled carrying case
4. Promised/guarantee of at least one installment of OS/core app updates and a discount on future OS upgrades (like from OS5 to OS6) for models that can technically handle it.

It wouldn't cost THAT much to implement most of the above en masse and it would go a long way about convincing business users & corporate buyers that PalmOne still takes them seriously and has not abandoned that market for the flavor-of-the-day candy colored consumer-oriented Zire line.

RE: They should have super-rapid chargers
statik @ 7/7/2004 3:00:47 PM #
Print manuals have been cut out of most products in order to save costs, plus, at least in my experience, consumers are too lazy to read a big thick manual.

The alternative that I would like to see is to have PalmOne sell an SD card with a "how to use your PalmOne PDA" video that starts up the moment you insert the SD card.

The best set up guide I've ever seen was back in the 80s when Atari released their ST computer line. Every computer came with a manual, but more importantly it came with a video tape set-up guide.

You plopped the video into your VCR and it walked you through all the basics. Everything from how to set up the computer to how to use the mouse and do word processing.

Crazy 'bout a Mercury

RE: They should have super-rapid chargers
palmdiva @ 7/7/2004 4:20:49 PM #
I was actually shocked that the treo came with an honest to god printed manual. I had already ordered "how to do everything with your treo", because having owned them for other gear they are well written and helpful. I bought the Zire book for a friend who just got her first Palm. I found it in a Microcomputer center store. The Palm store didn't have it in stock. An SD card with the manual on it would be a great idea, so you would have it handy for refeence as ou get use to the device



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