Apple’s Online Store Is Currently Offline For Updates

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Apple’s online store went offline on Thursday evening — sporting the usual “We’ll be back. We’re busy updating the Apple Store for you and will be back soon” missive  (h/t to AllThingsD which spotted the store was AWOL). The store has been down for at least three hours.

Apple typically takes its online store offline ahead of new product launches, but with no Apple event officially scheduled, it’s not clear what the latest swathe of downtime relates to.

We recently reported an Apple investor’s claim that Cupertino plans to send out invites next week to an event that will unveil a smaller iPad — but the event itself is not apparently due to take place until October 17 so it’s a little early for Apple’s store to go offline to get ready to list an iPad mini.

Friday does mark the one-year anniversary of Apple founder Steve Jobs’ death — but the Apple homepage would seem a more fitting place for a tribute to Jobs.

Update: The Apple store is now back on line after several hours of downtime but it’s not immediately obvious what has been updated.

Update: The Apple homepage now carries a tribute video commemorating Steve Jobs’ life — followed by a note from CEO Tim Cook which includes the line: “Steve’s passing one year ago today was a sad and difficult time for all of us. I hope that today everyone will reflect on his extraordinary life and the many ways he made the world a better place.”