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Apple on track to open 33 new stores by fall

New Apple stores could pop up at a rate of one every two days from Canada to Italy between now and late September, according to an Australian retail tracker.

An Apple store in Beijing.

After a lull in grand openings this year, Apple may be preparing to open a bevy of new stores as the school year kicks off.

The Mac maker plans to open 33 new stores between now and the end of September, according to Australian retail tracker Current.

A Current report cites an Apple source as saying the company plans to increase its total store count from 330 to 363 by September 25.

According to Ifoapplestore, which maps Apple stores around the world, the company didn't open a store for more than four months this past winter, the longest period ever between grand openings. Only six stores have been opened so far in 2011, five of them in Europe and one in Valencia, Calif. Opening 33 more would enable Apple to hit the target trumpeted by executives earlier in the year of opening 40 stores in fiscal year 2011.

It's likely to be a busy back-to-school and holiday season in Apple stores. While the debut of Mac OS X Lion is expected this week, the release is entirely digital, letting consumers grab the new software from home. Nonetheless, the company is expected to release a new version of the iPhone, unveil an updated iPod line, and refresh a handful of its Mac computers in the coming months.

Possible locations for the newest Apple stores are literally all over the map, with guesses in locations from the United States and Canada to Europe and China. Some of the most likely candidates for upcoming openings, based on job listings and reported construction, include Murray, Utah, on Fourth Street in Berkeley, Calif., in Anchorage, Alaska, in Little Rock, Ark., in Burlington, Ontario, in Florence and Catania, Italy, and in suburbs of Paris and Madrid.