After our attempt at explaining the 500% markup on Apple’s new solar array yesterday, further information has now confirmed that Apple’s new stores – starting in the brand new San Francisco location – will be utilizing a new walkable solar glass floor technology for electricity generation. According to a document on Onyx Solar’s website, Apple “has decided to commit itself to OnyxSolar’s designer photvoltaic technology for its new stores. The first of these is located in the heart of San Francisco, the company’s home town.”
It’s no secret that Tesla’s retail strategy is inspired by Apple’s. In 2010, the automaker hired George Blankenship as VP of Store Design & Development. Blankenship was a GAP veteran who led Apple’s real estate business from 2000 to 2006 and to whom Apple Store’s early success has been largely attributed.
Blankenship retired in 2013, but apparently it wasn’t the end of the connection between the retail strategies of the two companies. We learn that earlier this month, Tesla hired the team leader of the architectural team for Apple Stores at Callison, an international architecture firm.