Apple challenge cards are sent to Apple employees who participate in company-sponsored events, usually with a gift to celebrate the accomplishment of successfully completing the challenge.
These challenge cards include:
Close Your Rings Challenge (2022)—Hooray! You did it. Congrats on finishing the Close Your Rings Challenge with flying colors. We hope this journey has inspired you to keep the momentum going (and your body moving). Wear this Apple-branded pullover shirt as a reminder to keep on closing those rings—you’ve earned it. Mindful Minute Challenge (2022)—Your presence is a gift. Relax, reflect, and remember your practice can be flexible (and comfortable). Use this cozy pillow-blanket combo to rest your head, take a seat, or elevate your mindful practice any way, or anywhere, you wish. Be present and keep going. You’ve got this.
This bright green t-shirt features Apple’s environmental logo that has been featured in Apple Stores, often as a part of Earth Day recognitions. The logo features a white Apple logo with a green leaf. This t-shirt was given to Apple retail store employees in 2022.
In 2020 Apple reached a major environmental milestone when they reported that their facilities were carbon neutral—and they further state the goal that “By 2030, all our products will be too.” In 2022, Lisa Jackson, Vice President, Environment, Policy & Social Initiatives, wrote:
“In a year where the technology we make touched more lives than ever, teams across Apple never stopped innovating to protect the planet. Whether it’s using more recycled materials in our products, or transitioning our supply chain to 100 percent clean energy, there is no part of Apple this work does not reach.”
This t-shirt is size XL and is printed in the tag area with “100% Recycled Cotton” and “Made in Vietnam.” The shirt is in its original packaging.
The @AppleEDU Twitter account was started in January 2012 and as of 2023 has one million followers. Its description reads:
“Spark new ideas, create more aha moments, and teach in ways you’ve always imagined. Follow @AppleEDU for tips, updates, and inspiration.”
This set of vinyl stickers is printed with @AppleEdu in Apple’s San Francisco font in a variety of colors—red, orange, green, blue, hot pink, and black. Oddly, the Twitter account name is @AppleEDU (with EDU in caps), but the stickers use the “CamelCase” convention from the 1990s—an odd inconsistency given the usual fussiness of the Education Marketing team.
These stickers were available at technology conferences for attendees who visited Apple’s dedicated area. At the EdTech conference I attended, Apple had a part of a hallway and a dedicated conference room where various sessions and activities were offered where attendees could learn about Apple’s programs and offerings for schools.
Each sticker sheet measures 4 x 1.25 inches. Removed from the backing, the custom-die-cut sticker measures approximately 3.5 x 0.625 inches.
Released in November 2016, Designed by Apple in California was a photo book that documented 20 years of design at Apple. The book contains 450 photos depicting products from the original 1998 iMac to the original Apple Pencil released in 2015. The book “also documents the materials and techniques used by Apple’s design team over two decades of innovation.”
In the book’s foreward, Jony Ive, Apple’s Chief Design Officer, stated:
“While this is a design book, it is not about the design team, the creative process or product development. It is an objective representation of our work… We strive, with varying degrees of success, to define objects that appear effortless. Objects that appear so simple, coherent and inevitable that there could be no rational alternative.”
The book itself was described by Apple:
“Designed by Apple in California is available in two sizes and printed on specially milled, custom-dyed paper with gilded matte silver edges, using eight color separations and low-ghost ink. This linen-bound, hardcover volume was developed over an eight-year period. It is published by Apple.”
The large book measured 13 x 16.25 inches and was sold for $299. The small book was 10.20 x 12.75 inches and was sold for $199. The book could be purchased at apple.com and at selected Apple Stores, including Apple SoHo, Apple Fifth Avenue, Apple Upper East Side, Apple Williamsburg and Apple World Trade Center in New York; Apple The Grove in Los Angeles and Apple Third Street in Santa Monica; Apple North Michigan Avenue in Chicago; Apple Lincoln Road in Miami; Apple Northpark in Dallas; Apple Union Square in San Francisco; Apple Palo Alto and Apple Infinite Loop in Cupertino.
This example is the large version of the book, unopened in its original box. I purchased this book at the Chicago Apple Store on Michigan Avenue.
Apple’s fifth “Close Your Rings” employee challenge was held in 2021. According to MacRumors contributor, mikedop, the Close Your Rings Challenge:
“…is an internal challenge hosted by Apple’s Wellness team, which challenges employees to close their Apple Watch activity rings every day for an entire month. The challenge can be won at three different tiers: gold, silver, and bronze… Employees log their fitness in their Apple Watch, and after the month, are shipped a prize if they meet the qualifications. This challenge is offered to all employees within Apple, down to the retail level.”
Successful participants in the 2021 Close Your Rings challenge were sent a set of three microfiber towels that use the colors and designs of Apple’s Activity rings. Each towel is primarily black and has a two-sided tag with the Activity rings on one side and the Apple logo on the other. Each towel features a different design woven into the microfiber: one uses three thin stripes in the colors of the Activity rings along two sides, one uses a “21” design in a unique, triple-stroke font style using the Activity ring colors, and a third towel shows half of the three filled Activity rings.
My collection includes the stripe and “21” designs, but I do not have the half-Activity ring design.
The towels were packaged in a custom white box with the Activity rings printed on top. The towels were created by Sunscope USA under a brand DiLA, Designed in LA (Los Angeles).
This Mindful Minute fleece was only available to Apple employees who participated in and completed the “Mindful Minute” challenge.
According to MacRumors writer mikedop, who has extensively researched and written about the challenges:
“Those who completed the 2019 Mindful Minute challenge received a soft fleece blanket. The blanket measures four feet by six feet in size (4×6) and contains no designs except for an embroidered mindfulness icon and Apple logo in a light teal.”
The blanket is made from black fleece. For the logo design, the mindfulness icon was simplified to use six interlocking circles in a circle. The design is similar to the Breathe app (which uses eight transparent interlocking circles).
Beginning in 2020 Apple began offering Apple Watch band designs that were specifically sized to wrists. These bands included the Apple Watch Solo Loop and the Apple Watch Braided Solo Loop. These Apple Watch bands were available in sizes 1–12.
In order to allow individuals to determine their Apple Watch Band size, Apple provided three methods:
1. Printable Tool (online PDF)
2. Everyday items (using a “tailor’s measuring tape” or a narrow strip of paper)
3. Sizing Tool (in-store paper tool)
Options 1 and 2 were available online. After measuring your wrist, Apple provided an online converter that allowed users to enter their wrist size to a maximum of 10 15/16 inch (although the Solo Loop only fit wrists to a maximum of 8 2/16 inches).
This Sizing Tool was available to Apple Store Customers. The tools includes the directions on the outer package, instructing individuals through diagrams to open the package, peel back an adhesive dot, wrap the tool around the wrist, and determine the band size based upon the location of arrows printed on the Sizing Tool.
This example is unopened and was obtained at the Apple Store Michigan Avenue in Chicago in December 2021.
This dark gray mug features a matte finish and a white Apple logo. The mug is relatively tall and tapered from bottom to top. It is approximately 4.5 inches tall, and has a bottom diameter of 3.5 inches and a top diameter of just under 3 inches.
These multicolor Apple logos are made from embroidery thread and have an adhesive back. One set of embroidery stickers are on a transparent plastic film with the adhesive still tacky, and another set are separate with dried adhesive on the back. The adhesive on the separated stickers is yellowing.
This product is featured on page 59 of the Spring 1993 Starting Line: Apple Marketing Communications Catalog. Its description reads:
Embroidered Appliqués Wear our adhesive-backed, embroidered logo appliqués proudly on your lapel, or add them to the cover of event materials. They’re outstanding giveaways. 250 per roll. APL520
Because the stickers are made primarily of thread, each has a slightly different shape, especially the individual stickers with hardened adhesive backs. The individual sticker dimensions vary, but the least-distorted example measures 20mm x 25mm for stickers on the plastic backing, and 18mm x 23mm off the backing.