DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) - Apple has opened its first retail stores in the Arab world with two shops in the United Arab Emirates.

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) Apple has opened its first retail stores in the Arab world with two shops in the United Arab Emirates.

The two new stores for the Cupertino, California-based technology giant are in Dubai's Mall of the Emirates and Abu Dhabi's Yas Mall. Both opened Thursday.

Apple has focused its attention outside of the Arab world since beginning its retail operations in 2001. Resellers and gray-market stores filled the gap for years, with most new iPhones regularly available from mall kiosks across Dubai soon after their U.S. release.

Now though, analysts say Apple wants to reach wealthy consumers like other high-fashion brands at Emirati malls. That's especially true as Apple tries to sell its new Apple Watch line, with some of the high-tech timepieces costing as much as $17,000.