Michelle Lodge:

Apple users head to their local mall’s Apple Store, owned by Apple Inc. (AAPL) , with their iPhone or laptop in tow for service or to take a course.
 
 Then while waiting for repairs or on the way in or out of the mall, they may stop at a Nordstrom (JWN) and drop $300 on a shirt or look at a loveseat at a Brookstone for about $200.
 
 The mall trip could also mean picking up makeup at MAC, owned by Estee Lauder Companies Inc (EL) , or maybe even dinner at P.F. Chang’s. $Ka-ching, $ka-ching, $ka-ching.
 
 Apple Stores turn out to be very good neighbors, and have become the new mall anchor store, a role once held by department stores, because they draw lots of foot traffic, which also benefits the smaller stores.
 
 In the U.S., there are roughly about 140 million customers with iPhones, estimated Gene Munster, a partner in Loup Ventures in an interview with TheStreet, and those millions usually need to go to a bricks-and-mortar store for service.