Apple sizes up Genius Bar at expanding N.J. locale

The company might be trying out a double-row Genius Bar at one retail outlet as a way to take advantage of more space, report says.

Caroline McCarthy/CNET

Apple could be overhauling at least one of its retail stores to add more space for the Genius Bar and the customers themselves.

The company's Garden State Plaza store in Paramus, N.J., is reportedly the target of the renovations, according to Apple blog site ifoAppleStore. The store itself is moving to a larger space in the shopping mall that will triple its square footage.

Sources told ifoAppleStore that the Paramus store originally occupied a space 30 feet wide but has since outgrown that and has run into problems of overcrowding. The new location will open up room for a double-row Genius Bar with one row behind the other and parallel to the store's rear wall.

This wouldn't be the first time Apple has tweaked its Genius Bar to make better use of space, according to the blog. A "floating" Genius Bar was added to the Los Gatos, Calif., store last July that sits 90 degrees off the rear wall. Other stores have expanded the length of their Genius Bars. So far, the record for the longest Genius Bar is held by the Amsterdam store in the Netherlands at 82 feet.

Greater store space and bigger Genius Bars may be in order after Apple unveils its next-generation iPhone.

Expected to debut today, the iPhone 5 should attract a healthy number of upgraders and new customers. That means Apple stores will have to prepare for huge crowds of buyers and lots of people asking for advice and assistance on the iPhone.

CNET contacted Apple for comment and will update the story if we get more information.

Tune in Wednesday starting at 9 a.m. PT for our Apple iPhone event live blog.

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