Yesterday, Peking University added an Apple Store in the unusual and controversial location of the library.
As one of the most prestigious educational institutions in China, some of the studious students are outraged that Apple would disrupt their valuable study area. “Learning and shops should be separate,” said one student. Other views are less harsh and don’t see it as a problem, “as long as the price is reasonable and does not affect the study environment, its alright.” Another student said. I remember in my University in Sydney, we also had an Apple Shop next to but not inside the library.
Titled “Liangyu Apple Experience Center” it is meant to showcase the latest range of products, but will not allow on-site sales. However if people do want to purchase something, they can order through the store and must show student ID to get a discount. The store itself is an authorized distributor but not an official Apple store.
Other Apple stores exist on university campuses around Beijing, but they are all in non-academic areas. Some examples are Tsinghua University, Beijing Film Academy, Beijing Normal University and Capital Normal University.
This could be just a wild prediction, but in the future, there might not even need to be a library full of physical books. Students of the future could very well likely be walking around with their tablets and downloading content to use at their leisure. Imagine not having to carry around a stack of heavy books in your bag or having to remember when to return them, or worry about losing them and paying a fine. I know the library is often the centrepiece of a university campus and some people love them, but in the future they probably won’t be a real need for them at all.