By Carl HoweifoAppleStore.com has an excellent analysis of the revenue impact of the Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) retail stores to date. His take: Apple retail stores now contribute more than a billion in revenue to Apple's income statement each quarter.
I believe that the Apple retail stores actually have a larger overall effect on Apple's business results because they are very powerful marketing and support tools as well. After all, back in the dark old days when Apple relied on the likes of Best Buy and CompUSA to sell its computers, it didn't have nearly as good results, largely because those retail outlets didn't really market its products well or properly. And no one should discount the positive effect that the Apple Genius Bars have had on its customer satisfaction -- it really is a huge plus to be able to take your iPod or computer to the Genius bar and have it seen to personally.