Apple shuts down all its 272 US stores ‘until further notice’ over fears of coronavirus
- Apple updated the banner on its US site to say stores will be close indefinitely
- The move comes after the firm closed locations for two weeks around the world
- However, it is not clear if the new closure is just for the US or all its stores
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Apple is shutting down all of its 272 stores in the US over fears of the coronavirus ‘until further notice.’
The tech giant had previously closed its locations outside of China until March 27th, but the banner on its US website has been amended to make closures indefinite, as first spotted by 9to5Mac.
In the US, more than 4,000 people have tested positive for coronavirus and 93 have died as of Tuesday morning – globally there are more than 180,000 cases and over 7,000 deaths have been reported.
It is not clear if Apple has informed its US stores of the change or if the global locations will follow the same policy, as the FAQ page still lists March 27th as the re-opening date.
Apple had previously closed its locations outside of China until March 27th, but the banner on its US website has been amended to make closures indefinite
Apple announced last week that it would be closing the doors to its stores outside of China for the next two weeks with March 27th as the re-opening date.
Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO, made the announcement on Twitter early Saturday morning, saying that the measures will help prevent the spread of coronavirus.
‘In our workplaces and communities, we must do all we can to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Apple will be temporarily closing all stores outside of Greater China until March 27 and committing $15M to help with worldwide recovery,’ reads the tweet.
While the temporary closures are in place, Apple will continue to pay its hourly retail workers their wages.
It has also extended its leave policies, which will include recovering from illness, caring for families, mandatory quarantining or for those who have to look after their children during school closures.
Apple announced last week that it would be closing the doors to its stores outside of China for the next two weeks with March 27th as the re-opening date. Pictured is a sign hanging at a location in Chicago, Illinoise
It is not clear if Apple has informed its US stores of the change or if the global locations will follow the same policy, as the FAQ page still lists March 27th as the re-opening date. Apple’s empty flagship store on 5th Avenue pictured above after the company announced it will shutter for two weeks
A man in a protective mask walks past a closed Apple Store on Fifth Avenue which is closed, along with most other Apple Stores around the world. However, this location is no shutdown until further notice
Workers pictured inside the Apple flagship store in New York cleaning it up as its closed to the public
Empty tables at the Apple store in the World Trade Center pictured above
In a statement, Cook said that one of the most effective ways to minimize the risk of spreading coronavirus was to reduce density and maximize social distance.
‘As rates of new infections continue to grow in other places, we’re taking additional steps to protect our team members and customers,’ he said in the statement.
The company will also allow employees outside of China who work in offices to work remotely if their job allows.
‘Extensive, deep cleaning will continue at all sites. In all our offices, we are rolling out new health screenings and temperature checks,’ Cook said.
Alongside the temporary measures, Cook said the company will match employee donations two-to-one to to help with ‘worldwide recovery’, and effort which has now reached $15 million.
A general view shows a solitary customer looking through the glass of the Apple Store in Cardiff
A man wearing a face mask passes by a closed Apple Store in Paris, France on Saturday