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Monday, August 16, 2004, 12:20 pm PT (03:20 pm ET)

Apple to open retail store in Japan's Aichi region

Apple Computer has plans to open a retail location in Aichi, Japan, inside the industrial city of Nagoya, according to reports.

The Nagoya location, which first appeared in a confidential company hit-list of over two dozen prospective retail store locations in Japan, is likely to become the country's third Apple retail store, ifoAppleStore is reporting.

The future store, scheduled to open sometime in 2005, is reportedly within close proximity to both the 13-story Takashimaya Department Store and a Japan Railway (JR) train station.

According to Apple research documents, the Aichi region retains a prefecture population of approximately 7,043,000 with 1,430,000 active rail station users. By comparison, Apple's current flagship locations in Tokyo and Osaka feature prefecture populations of 12,064,000 and 8,805,000, respectively, but see significantly less traffic from rail station patrons.

Unlike the Tokyo and Osaka locations, which topped the confidential hit-list and carried the highest of priority, the Nagoya location appears as the eleventh listing and was assigned a second tier priority. According to the document, the store will be an estimated 4,000-square-foot location within a shopping center that provides street access.

Earlier today, word began to spread that Apple will also open three retail stores in the Taiwan region, including a massive flagship store in downtown Taipei.