Photo: Flickr/ed and eddie
Apple opened a new retail store in Palo Alto at the end of October.With Italian stone floors, a huge glass ceiling and entrance, it’s a typically gorgeous Apple store.
There’s just one tiny problem. It’s “unpleasantly, almost unbearably noisy,” according to Jean-Louis Gassee, a technology industry veteran who lives in Palo Alto.
The problem is that Apple’s glass and concrete can’t absorb sound. Therefore the conversations of dozens of people rattles around the space creating a terrible din.
Gassee measured the sound in the store, and found it to be at 75 dB. He stepped out on the street and measured the noise of traffic, and found it was 65 dB. And this was on a quiet day in the store. When he visited the store on the day of the iPad Mini launch, he said it was even noisier.
However, Gizmodo writer Mario Aguilar thinks Gassee might be making too big a deal of the noise. He says the average conversation registers at 65 dB. And city traffic tends to register at 85 dB. A toilet flush registers at 75 dB, says Aguilar, who burns Gassee and the good folks of Palo Alto saying, “Indeed, 75 dB is probably only a big deal for library-loving nerds from Stanford.”
Still, Gassee spotted a device for measuring the sound pressure in the store. So, it looks like Apple is at least somewhat concerned that its beautiful store in the heart of Silicon Valley is too noisy.
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