Verizon concept store is very Applesque
Regardless of how you feel about Apple as a company, the one thing you can't argue with is the exceptional design quality of everything Apple from the devices all the way up to the Apple Stores themselves. It's also one of the things that you rarely see competitors copying, because Apple design tends to be so unique. However, it looks like Verizon wants to make its stores a bit more Appley.
Sure, the reality is that all Verizon has done to its stores is take out some clutter, add some empty space and some tables to display devices, but the overall effect is still quite similar to that of an Apple Store. The movement lines around the store are clearer. It's easier to get an understanding of where everything is from a glance. And, there are big visual splashes with posters on the walls. It's brightly lit, with clean white tables, and hardwood flooring.
Overall, it looks quite good, and definitely an improvement over traditional Verizon store layouts. The first concept store, called "Evolution 2.0" (which is a name so ridiculous that we intend never to use it again), is in Toms River, New Jersey. The store is 3100 square feet and will have 21 full time employees. And, Verizon is also making the store completely paperless and have teaching workshops just like Apple Stores.
As of now, this is just a concept store, and there's no guarantee that Verizon will continue the redesign in other stores, but frankly we hope that these changes make their way to more Verizon stores and more companies in general. There will undoubtedly be plenty of people to claim that Verizon and others are just copying Apple, but these are changes that make perfect sense, and really should become ubiquitous. Why wouldn't customers want stores that are easier to navigate, have more helpful options, and are less wasteful? It's just common sense.