Earlier this summer Apple began testing the expansion of its updated Maps data in Italy, a rollout that started with North America before continuing in the United Kingdom, Ireland, Spain, and Portugal. Today, the company officially launched its new Maps data in Italy, San Marino, Vatican City, and Andorra, along with a host of related features.
Posts tagged with "italy"
The first European iOS app development center, previously announced by Apple in January, will officially open in October 2016. The center, now called iOS Developer Academy, will be hosted at the Università di Napoli Federico II:
The Università di Napoli Federico II (Naples, Italy) today announced it will host Europe’s first ever iOS Developer Academy in a new partnership with Apple that will see hundreds of students given the practical skills and training on developing apps for the world’s most innovative and vibrant app ecosystem. The iOS Developer Academy will officially open in October 2016 with more than 200 students taking part in the first year and more to follow in the years ahead.
Students will take part in a nine month curriculum designed and supported by Apple, with a dedicated facility at the new Campus in San Giovanni a Teduccio. The facility includes labs and access to the latest Apple hardware and software.
Great news for the Italian iOS developer community. More details are available at the official website here.
Apple today announced the creation of Europe’s first iOS App Development Center in Italy, to give students practical skills and training on developing iOS apps for the world’s most innovative and vibrant app ecosystem.
The iOS App Development Center, to be located at a partner institution in Naples, will support teachers and provide a specialized curriculum preparing thousands of future developers to be part of Apple’s thriving developer community. In addition, Apple will work with partners around Italy who deliver developer training to complement this curriculum and create additional opportunities for students. Apple expects to expand this program to other countries around the world.
Details are scarce at this point, but according to Repubblica, Italian prime minister Matteo Renzi lauded Apple’s commitment to innovation for “over 600 people” (a figure only Renzi shared) and announced he is going meet with Tim Cook tomorrow to discuss the initiative.
Fascinating analysis by Matt Richman on why the iPhone is less popular in Italy than in the United States:
From September 1st to December 19th of last year, I studied abroad in Rome, Italy. The experience changed my life for the better. Starting as a complete beginner in a foreign country and leaving it 110 days later able to read, write, and speak basic Italian was one of the hardest and most rewarding things I’ve ever done. Anyone with the chance to study abroad should do it.
One of the first things I noticed in Rome was that the iPhone is less popular there than I unconsciously assumed it would be. Coming from the US, where iPhones are extremely prevalent in rich and cosmopolitan areas, I was shocked and confused to see so few of them in Rome.
And I didn’t see too many of them elsewhere in Italy, either. In Florence I saw iPhones in the hands of tourists but rarely in the hands of Florentines, and in Todi, a small town in central Italy, I didn’t see a single resident with an iPhone.
As someone who’s lived in Italy his whole life and writes about Apple for a living, the topic is close to me. I only partially agree with Matt’s points on retail and the iPhone as a status symbol.
While we don’t have chains with thousands of locations such as Walmart or Target in Italy, we do have chains with dozens of stores such as Unieuro and Media World – which often feature their own in-store mini Apple stores with iPhones, iPads, and Macs laid out on Apple Store-like wooden tables. And, it’s easy enough to find iPhones at any electronics or carrier shops inside malls, not to mention smaller independent stores in towns like Viterbo, my hometown. I wouldn’t say that Apple has a third-party retail penetration problem speaking from personal experience – if anything, I’d argue that Apple’s own stores should have a wider presence. It’s relatively easy to find an iPhone at a non-Apple location these days.
As for the status symbol discussion, Matt’s points about fashion and prioritizing other purchases seem likely to me, but I don’t have experience with other countries to compare what I see here. However, I don’t completely buy the argument that iPhones aren’t an important status symbol in Italy. Again, speaking from anecdotal experience, I know and I’ve met lots of people who buy the latest iPhone just because it’s an iPhone – it doesn’t matter which new features or improvements it offers. Having an iPhone is, for better or worse, a fashion statement (I also see that reflected in how many choose to customize their devices with branded cases or other blingy accessories).
I think Matt is absolutely spot-on about iPhone prices. In Italy, iPhones (and Apple devices in general) are expensive, and I wouldn’t be surprised to hear that, statistically, fewer Italian households can afford an iPhone (or multiple ones) compared to American ones. The recession hit Italy hard, and the iPhone is as close to a luxury smartphone as you can get – especially if you choose to buy any iPhone above 16 GB unlocked with no contract.
This last aspect ties into a point Matt didn’t cover: Samsung and Android smartphones (and, to a lesser extent, Windows smartphones). Based on what I’ve seen in Rome and traveling around Italy, Samsung has enjoyed great success with their Galaxy devices over the past few years. Samsung has been quite aggressive with ad campaigns and promotions (discounts) in partnership with the aforementioned chains. Galaxy smartphones aren’t cheap, but there’s usually a good chance you’ll find pretty good deals around; also, there’s a lot of choice in the Galaxy family, which you don’t get with only two new iPhone models released every year.
What I’ve also noticed, particularly in the last two years, is that decent Android smartphones have gotten really cheap here – I have many friends who moved from an iPhone to Huawei phones (another company that’s been running TV commercials aggressively) simply because they needed a new phone but didn’t have the money for a new iPhone and Huawei had a good enough option for much less. If you apply this to hundreds of other Android devices sold in malls and electronic chains, it would explain why, anecdotally, I’m seeing more types of smartphones in the streets of Italy compared to a few years ago.
Matt has raised some interesting points in his article. The more I think about it, though, the more curious I am about stats for used iPhone sales in Italy. Every time I had to sell an iPhone – either to close friends or by posting it online – it took me less than 48 hours.
I live in Viterbo, a small town in Lazio, Italy, not too far away from Rome. My town is a beautiful place to visit with a rich history behind its Etruscan origins; unfortunately, it is often vastly undervalued by its citizens and municipal administration. My town lives and breathes in history, but very few people seem to appreciate its roots.
I took a walk in the center of my town today, and I ended up gazing upon an original Apple I. And an Apple II. And a Lisa. And a Macintosh. Today, the medieval buildings that make Viterbo an evocative architectural tapestry of art and history became, for a moment, a gallery for the modern history of technology.
Thanks to the efforts of Medioera, a festival of “digital culture” at its third annual edition here in Viterbo, Marco Boglione’s original Apple I gained a prominent spot in the gorgeous Piazza del Gesù (take a look at the location) alongside other Apple computers from the 70’s and 80’s, as well as Atari, Commodore, and IBM machines.
Earlier today, Apple updated its Terms and Conditions for the Italian iTunes Store to include information about iTunes Match, the company’s music service powered by iCloud. Launched in November 2011 in the United States (here’s our original hands-on), the service was later brought to more countries on December 15 and January 17, including South America, the UK, and other European countries.
Lei può abbonarsi a iTunes Match pagando un canone annuale. Per abbonarsi Lei deve aver registrato una carta di credito valida nell’archivio di iTunes. L’abbonamento non è rimborsabile (salvo richiesto dalla legge applicabile), e si rinnoverà automaticamente per periodi di un anno finché Lei non lo cancellerà. Il Suo account sarà addebitato non più di 24 ore prima della scadenza del periodo di abbonamento corrente. Lei può annullare il rinnovo automatico modificando le impostazioni dell’account iTunes Store sul Suo computer. Lei non sarà più in grado di accedere ai Suoi Contenuti iTunes Match su iTunes Match dopo la scadenza del Suo periodo di abbonamento.
Back in March, it was reported that Apple was holding a series of meetings with SIAE – the Italian association that represents “artists and editors” – to get the green light on launching iTunes Match in Italy.
According to Apple’s official support document about iTunes Match and iTunes in the Cloud availability, Italy still isn’t listed among the countries with support for Match and iTunes in the Cloud; as of today, iTunes Match is available in 37 countries worldwide.
Whilst the update of iTunes’ terms and conditions to include additional iTunes Match certainly confirms the company has made progress on obtaining rights to launch the service, it should also be noted that, back in February, Japan was rumored to be getting support for iTunes Match soon. In the case of Japan, however, only support for iTunes in the Cloud was spotted (and was eventually launched), whilst today’s updated agreement specifically mentions iTunes Match in Italy.
(The location of the Apple Store at Porta di Roma. Image via Macity)
As first noted by setteBIT, Apple officially acknowledged the existence of its 10th retail store in Italy, at the Porta di Roma shopping mall. As previously reported, the retail store is rumored to be opening on Saturday, April 21, albeit no official confirmation in regards to the grand opening has been made yet. The “Galleria Porta di Roma” shopping mall, located near the GRA highway of Rome, is open from 9 AM to 10 PM during the weekends, and it includes 220 retail stores. The new store’s dedicated webpage will be available here.
Two weeks ago, a rumor suggested the Porta di Roma Apple retail store would open on April 21st; on the same day every year, the city of Rome commemorates its founding in 753 BC, The celebration is known as “Natale di Roma” (Birthday of Rome), and such date would certainly provide an opportunity for Apple to play around the marketing tagline of the store opening.
Apple’s first retail store in Italy opened in April 2007 at Roma Est, another shopping mall located outside Rome. The new Apple store at Porta di Roma will be the company no. 365 worldwide, Italy’s 10th, and the 118th to open outside the United States.
According to a report by Italian website Macity [Google Translation], Apple’s upcoming retail store in Via Roma, Turin, will become Italy’s “most important” one as it debuts later this year, with an opening date apparently set for September 2012. Citing “sources with access to information about the new store”, Macity claims the store in Via Roma will cover an approximate area of 1000 square meters (10763 square feet, possibly including warehouse and back of the store) on two floors. Previously owned by Mondadori, the empty store is now being completely emptied so to let Apple rebuild it to fit the store’s style, which will be “different” from the current retail stores in Italy (9 out of 10 are located in shopping malls, with the exception of Via Rizzoli). Last, according to Macity, once open, the new store will be as “prestigious” as other Apple retail stores in Europe, specifically in France and the United Kingdom.
Apple was long rumored to be on the verge of launching a new flagship store in Milan, although the company didn’t manage to get permissions from the city, losing an auction for the Galleria space to fashion firm Prada. The new store in Via Roma will join Apple’s other store in Turin, at Le Gru. [via GGD Milano]
Apple’s online store with updated prices
Apple today took down its online store in Italy, raising prices for several products in order to account for Italy’s increase of value-added tax (VAT, known as IVA – “imposta sul valore aggiunto” – in Italy) from 20% to 21% as part of the recently approved austerity bill.
iOS devices have seen a small bump in prices with the 1% VAT increase. The 16 GB iPad 2, for instance, rises from € 479 to € 483; the 32 GB and 64 GB models have changed to € 583,83 and € 684,65, respectively. The entry-level iPhone 4 rises from € 539 to 543,50; the iPod touch goes from € 239 to € 241. The iPod line sees another minor bump with the iPod nano (€ 169 to € 170,40), iPod shuffle (€ 55 to € 55,45) and iPod classic (€ 247 to € 249,05). The Apple TV goes from € 119 to € 120.
As for the Mac, the biggest change can be seen in the standard configuration of the Mac Pro, updated from € 2399 to € 2419. Apple’s online store just came back online, and its VAT (IVA) footnote still reports 20%. Changes, however, can be compared in the screenshots above and below.
When the UK’s VAT rate changed from 17.5% to 20% earlier this year, Apple took down its online store to modify the prices accordingly, without absorbing the tax increase by reducing their prices.
Apple’s online store before the VAT increase
[image via setteB.IT]