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Notes: London Apple store, Virtual PC 7, shareholders meeting

Apple tops London location with dome

Gary Allen of ifoAppleStore has done some digging on the site of Apple's forthcoming flagship retail store on Regent Street in London. According to Allen, the building at 229-247 Regent Street is protected by Britain's "Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas Act 1990" and has been assigned a Grade II listing.

According to the developer, Stanhope PLC, this law requires that any amendments or modifications to the façade of the location be approved by local authorities. Stanhope PLC reportedly told Allen that the historic nature of the building's façade will be retained, ruling out Apple's stainless steel and backlit Apple logo prototype. However, it appears that Apple may be making some interesting modifications to the top of the building.

London Dome
London Dome


Last week, AppleInsider reader, Matthias Ballmann of Hamburg, Germany, noticed that the ongoing construction on the site has recently yielded a mysterious dome-like structure atop the building. While Ballmann — whose first hand account also produced the two photos above — speculates that the structure would provide a handsome view, it may simply act as a skylight for one of the upper floors.

Virtual PC Delays
In what appears to be semi-public news, sources said that Microsoft has delayed the release of Virtual PC 7.0 by approximately two months. While Office 2004 Gold edition is expected to begin shipping in mid-May, Office 2004 Professional edition (which includes Virtual PC) will reportedly not ship until sometime this summer.

Microsoft officials have confirmed the delay, though no further details were provided.

Apple Shareholders Meeting

Apple shareholders on Thursday reelected the company's six-member board with 82 percent of shareholder support. Shareholders also voted against a proposal to restrict executive pay, and in favor of retaining KPMG as the company's auditor. U.S. pension fund giant CalPERS had previously objected to all three moves, and said it would withhold voting its 1.48 million shares from support of the measures.

Speaking at the meeting, Apple CEO, Steve Jobs, dismissed an overture from RealNetworks to open up the iPod, stating that there would be an initial and ongoing cost to allow the iPod to work with other music services. "To be honest, it's just not worth it," Jobs said.

Tim Cook, Apple's executive vice president of sales and operations, also defended an executive decision earlier in the month that saw the closing of the companies Sacramento-based Elk Grove manufacturing plant. "We could save the company over $3 million per quarter by doing this."