Apple to roll out retail-based ‘Joint Venture’ service in coming weeks

There has been quite a bit of noise recently about a quarterly, morning meeting for Apple retail employees scheduled for this Sunday, February 27th. Apple retail staffers have been asked to sign a non-disclosure agreement — not a standard procedure for such meetings — sparking speculation about Macbook Pro, iPad, and other hardware-related unveilings. BGR has learned that the topic in question is a new, retail-based service being called Joint VentureFirst rumored back in March of last year, Joint Venture is an extension of Apple’s current Genius Bar services aimed at small businesses and prosumers. Subscribers of the new service will be able to speak with a store-based Apple technician — lovingly referred to as Geniuses — over the phone for one-on-one consultation and troubleshooting, or they can request an on-site visit. Currently, Apple’s Geniuses are not allowed to provide support remotely via the phone or in-person outside of Apple’s retail locations. A source has confirmed that Apple will reveal these plans to retail employees this Sunday, explaining how to properly position, explain, and sell the new offering. Not quite as sexy as new hardware or software, but it’s something, right?

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