Apple is taking extreme, but sensible, measures in China due to the outbreak and spread of Coronavirus. After initially closing just one store in the region, the Cupertino-based business has taken the difficult decision of temporarily shutting down all stores and offices through to February 9th.
Like a lot of other companies, Apple had initially taken a decision to close part of its business in the region due to the risk of staff and customers contracting, or spreading, Coronavirus to additional people.
Now, with the virus spreading wildly throughout China, and with cases appearing in other countries around the world, the company has decided to close all stores, corporate offices, and contact centers in China, as per a statement issued to Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman:
Our thoughts are with the people most immediately affected by the Coronoavirus and with those working around the clock to study and contain it. Out of an abundance of caution and based on the latest advice from leading health experts, we’re closing corporate offices, stores, and contact centers in mainland China through February 9. Apple’s online store in China remains open. We will continue to closely monitor the situation and we look forward to reopening our stores as soon as possible.
It makes perfect sense that Apple has taken this precaution in that particular region. We know that Coronavirus started in Wuhan, China, but it’s already managed to take the lives of 200 people in China, a lot of which are outside of the Wuhan region.
— Mark Gurman (@markgurman) February 1, 2020
The situation has also been declared to be a public health emergency on a global scale by the WHO, causing many countries to initiate a ban on people returning to those countries from China. Apple shutting down is very sensible in light of all of that information.
The official statement mentions Apple’s stores, contact centers, and corporate offices in mainland China, but it doesn’t give any information about the company’s production operations, run by companies like Foxconn.
We currently don’t know if Foxconn will be shuttering its doors for the same period of time. The virus is already known to be impacting the production of hardware for other companies so we wouldn’t be surprised if Apple’s production halts, also.
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