The same folks who designed Apple's retail stores will be making Helio retail stores, the first of which is to open this October in Santa Monica. Eventually, the wireless carrier's stores will show up in other cities, like Denver, San Diego, and the granddaddy of them all, New York.

Apparently, the Helio retail stores will host a whole bunch of innovative features, like customer check out and configuration "pods." They're even throwing in "spa kits" to clean and preen careworn devices. We promise not to have countdowns to these stores' openings, though.

Helio Stores: Now With More Tentacles! [Gearlog]