Apple support website now allows customers to schedule Apple repairs in Apple authorized third party service providers in addition to its own stores ( originally via The Loopinsight). Many people (including myself) did not know (before this) that you could get your Apple devices repaired / serviced in non- Apple stores with or without Apple care. Why is this huge? Well because in many cities in the U.S. Apple stores are so overwhelmed that if you want to schedule an appointment, you have to wait for days or even weeks. This new development will allow for a lot more customers to be serviced in a more timely and a in a more non-chaotic manner.
Apple's customer base has grown exponentially in the last few years or so, mainly thanks to its iPhone, that even Apple was taken back by surprise. Hence many Of their infrastructure (like data centers for cloud series) and services like (Genius bar appointments) were severely unprepared for this humungous growth. Though Apple has been feverishly working on improving these aspects of its business, it has a long way to go and this news is definitely a welcome move towards this cause.
One thing I am not yet sure is that as of now this expansion of allowing repairs to the third party Apple support stores seems to be limited to the U.S. This new allowance by Apple will particularly be helpful in other countries like India, where there is still not even one Apple store, till date. But there are scores of third party Apple support stores and even more Apple customers in need of some support in that country.