Apple is said to be gearing up to make changes to third-party products sold in its stores around the world, reducing its inventory to items with packaging that's been co-designed by the tech giant.
The Cupertino company has been working with a number of third-party accessory makers "to redesign boxes so that the experience more closely matches the boxes of Apple's own products," 9to5Mac reported Monday, citing a notice sent to store employees as its source.
The new-look accessory section could be unveiled as early as next week, and will likely feature products from companies including Tech21, Sena, Incase, Mophie, Logitech, and LifeProof. The suggestion that Apple is looking to overhaul parts of its store design, with particular focus on the accessories section, first surfaced last month.
9to5Mac says the packaging for future third-party products sold in Apple's stores is likely to be mainly white -- similar to boxes for Apple's own range of hardware and accessories -- and feature "simpler fonts, new photography, higher-quality materials, and more consistent compatibility labeling."
Perhaps the most surprising thing about the news is that it's taken this long for Apple to make such a move. The iPhone maker is well known for its laser-sharp focus on controlling its product experience, as well as its attention to detail when it comes to presentation, with such characteristics extending to all parts of its business.
Its stores -- part of a hugely successful retail empire carefully refined over the last 14 years -- are famous for their clean, minimalist design, among other things. Today, 450 stores worldwide welcome around a million customers a day, with the Apple Store now raking in more revenue per square foot than any other retailer on the planet. It's a safe bet Apple had little difficulty persuading those third-party accessory companies to have their packaging redesigned for its stores.